Microsoft Offers 64-bit Windows XP Preview

   For the first time, Microsoft has posted a free public preview of a 64-bit OS, opening up the Windows XP 64-Bit Edition for 64-Bit Extended Systems for one and all. Although the company has been testing the software since last fall (Microsoft distributed an earlier beta at October's Microsoft Professional Developers Conference--PDC--2003 in Los Angeles), this is the first time the company has broadly released this type of preview software.
   "Microsoft is now making Windows XP 64-Bit Edition for 64-Bit Extended Systems available through a Customer Preview Program \[CPP\] on the Microsoft Web site to customers with AMD Athlon 64 or Opteron hardware," a Microsoft representative told me yesterday. "This \[CPP\] enables customers interested in realizing the 64-bit capability of XP to begin developing on and working with the platform today."
   XP 64-bit Edition for 64-bit Extended Systems requires a PC based on the AMD Athlon 64 or the AMD Opteron (i.e., it won't run on 32-bit AMD chips or the more common Intel-based hardware). You can get the software for free through a 450MB download or on CD-ROM (plus shipping and handling costs). The software expires in 360 days, but Microsoft hopes to deliver the final version by late 2004.
   To sign up for the preview program, visit the Microsoft Web site. A CPP is also available for the Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition for 64-Bit Extended Systems beta, which runs on AMD Opteron-based hardware.

TAGS: Windows 8
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