Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/01/11/windows_7_public_beta_live/

Microsoft smooths Windows 7 snafu

Public beta goes live

By Cade Metz

Posted in Operating Systems, 11th January 2009 06:43 GMT

Microsoft's Windows 7 public beta is now live, a day after Redmond servers seemed unable to handle traffic from would-be downloaders and the company announced a delay in the code's release.

A company spokeswoman emailed The Reg at around noon Pacific time today to say the beta is available to the web public at large. Redmond also provided notice via the Windows blog.

The public beta was scheduled to go live yesterday. And for a better part of the morning, according to reports from across the web, both the public beta download page and Microsoft.com were intermittently unreachable, as would-be downloaders angled for position.

By the afternoon, Microsoft announced it was "delaying" the public beta, so it could add infrastructure and "ensure customers have the best possible experience when downloading."

In conversations with The Reg yesterday, Redmond claimed it had yet to actually post the public beta. But one Reg reader says he was working his way through the download process when Microsoft's site went "tits up." CNet confirms that download links did indeed go live at some point, and today, Microsoft seemed to indicate that users experienced problems while attempting to download.

"Due to an enormous surge in demand, the download experience was not ideal, so we listened and took the necessary steps to ensure a good experience," reads another post to the Windows blog.

In any event, you can now download the public beta here.

Redmond released beta build 7000 to MSDN and TechNet subscribers on Wednesday. And the same code is available to public beta testers. Microsoft said earlier this week that it would limit the public beta to 2.5 million users, but it has now decided to offer unlimited downloads for the next fortnight. "We have clearly heard that many of you want to check out the Windows 7 Beta," the company burbled. ®