Windows Vista RTM Is Imminent

My Microsoft sources confirmed this past weekend that the company is set to finalize Windows Vista as early as Monday and release the product to manufacturing sometime this week. The final build number is expected to be 6000.16386.061101-2205. (Readers might recall that, back on August 25, WinInfo broke the news that Microsoft would iterate Vista to build 6000 for the final release.)

In its quest to finalize Vista, Microsoft has faced two hurdles in recent days, one technical and one a bit unusual. The proposed final build was marred by a few late-breaking bugs, which the company expected to squash over the weekend. Meanwhile, a power outage in the Windows build lab on Friday prevented Microsoft from creating a new Vista build that night.

As I've related in my "Road to Gold: The Long Road to Windows Vista" series on the SuperSite for Windows, Microsoft was angered earlier this year after it granted analysts at Gartner unprecedented access to Vista's bug database, and Gartner published an opinion stating that the company would delay Vista past its January launch. This week, however, Michael Silver, the research vice president at Gartner, finally admitted that his firm's repeated predictions about further Vista delays were wrong, delighting those on the Vista team.

"It appears that Microsoft will beat our prediction," Silver wrote in a Gartner blog. "We will congratulate Microsoft as they hit their dates." Prepare to issue those congratulations, Mr. Silver: Microsoft is set to finish Vista this week.

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