back to article Microsoft delays first Windows 7 public beta

An update to this story can be found here Microsoft has postponed broad availability of the first Windows 7 beta in order to keep up with anticipated download demand. According to reports from across the web, both the Windows 7 download page and were intermittently unreachable earlier today as would-be …


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  1. Alan W. Rateliff, II
    Paris Hilton

    Should have put it on BitTorrent

    Oh, but I forgot... BitTorrent is evil and has no legitimate uses.

    Paris, no legitimate uses.

  2. Anon E Mus

    They should use existing infrastructure

    The widespread distribution of build 7000 shows that all the needed infrastructure is in place. They're probably stalling this beta for some other reason.

  3. unfunk

    I got it!

    ...well, I got it off a torrent, but after enough searching around, I found that gave me a valid download link and matching key (that I just used on my existing install). I think you have have signed in and gotten though the Technet registration process for it to work though... but it's worth a shot (change the 64 to a 32 if you're silly enough to want the 32bit one)

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Translated as.....

    The 386 handling the downloads can't cope.

    Thus we declare a marketing success!!!!!

  5. smeddy

    Why can't they just hook up a torrent server?

    It's proven technology, it's next to free, and it requires next to no bandwidth.

    Oh, and I played with a copy last week. It's looking okay, but seems really just like a new Vista/XP skin. Hopefully there's more under the hood which Im missing.

  6. Karl Tremain
    Thumb Down

    Has microsoft not heard of .torrent files?

    Since the rest of the internet downloaders have, maybe they should consider seeding a torrent, then we could all get a legal copy without this delay and the strain on their infrastructure!!! - written from IE8 in windows 7 that i got from msdn legally yesterday! (it ROCKS BTW!) :)

  7. Bug
    Thumb Down

    Never posted ???

    it insists the public beta was never posted. (Quote)

    Well this just shows how much MS knows about it's own web sites as the download was available on the UK site. I twice managed to get to the "enter your email address" page before the "server busy" appeared, followed very shortly after by 404 errors, then "this page you are searching for does not exist". Now the page address re-directs to the Windows 7 home page.

    Ah the pleasure of dealing with a well set-up software company... Not

  8. Lee T.
    Paris Hilton



    its the perfect way to do a download like this.

    but microsoft are a bunch of tossers busy demonising p2p, so it will never happen.

    Long Live those who do (WoW, TPB) :-)

    where's the PH angle?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's probably so FUBAR they can't deliver it yet.

    I'm sure some folks can't wait to punish themselves with Wizdung 7, but I doubt most people are really interested in more crapware from Microsucks.

  10. Brett Weaver
    Thumb Up

    Ha Ha... As Nelson would say..

    Microsoft has never really "gotten" the internet has it....

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Get with the times2.0 style MS

    All MS need to do is make one copy available, post a torrent file on thePirateBay and let the world wide seeder and leecher community take it from there.

    No need for any additional infrastructure spend, MS shareholders take note.

  12. Nordrick Framelhammer


    That is srange. Having just finished downloading the 32 bit ISO I am now downloading the 64 bit ISO.

  13. Steve
    Gates Horns


    I thought we have all been beta testing since 1989 with windows based products.........................

  14. Rog69


    Here's an idea, why not use Bittorrent to distribute it if they are having trouble keeping up with demand?

  15. Will Godfrey Silver badge


    Is that a large rodent I smell?

  16. Pete Silver badge

    site overwhelmed - what did they think would happen?

    I know I shouldn't be, but it constantly disappoints whenever one of these internet "events" take place,that the host almost always bombs under heavy demand. Apart from reinforcing the obvious fact that the internet isn't really that scalable - or robust, it must tell you something about the lack of forward thinking on the part fo the organisers.

    As soon as you advertise something as "free" it's pretty much guaranteed that there'll be a stampede to the trough, whether the people downloading it know/care what it is, or not. Didn't Microsoft have even the merest inkling that there'd be a frenzy and that maybe (just maybe) it might be a clever idea to add some extra capacity - or even just seed a few torrents and let the P2P kiddies do the heavy lifting?

    As it is, I doubt that many of the people who download this beta release will ever get around to using it. Mostly it will sit around on people's disks, unused and unloved, until either they need the space or see the file - and can't recall what it was and just delete it, thinking "what was I doing?"

  17. stim

    seemed to work for me...

    got my key about 11pm last night (9/1/08), took an hour or two, but eventually got in...

  18. Inzomniak

    Direct microsoft download links

    While idly surfing I found these direct microsoft links which appear to be working for both 32bit & 64bit versions of build 7000

    The 32-bit release

    The 64-bt release

  19. Anonymous Coward

    Really Microsoft, not cool

    How difficult would it be to implement a bittorrent server? Or publish it to the akamai infrastructure which they already use for other things?

    Sounds like they're stalling to me (what a shock): "we tried to release it on time but didn't because too many people would have downloaded it".

    Slow downloads would be preferred to no downloads (imho).

    I'm sure that if they put it on a linux server, it could handle the demand!!

  20. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    I'm sure staff won't let Steve down?

    After Mr Ballmer promised W7 availability I am sure staff will support and make manifest his claim/assertion of availability?

  21. Brian Davies

    MS says 'don't worry'!

    Posted a few minutes ago by Microsoft's Brandon LeBlanc on the Windows 7 Blog:

    'I know many of you are concerned about getting a product key for the Windows 7 Beta and concerned about missing your chance to get a product key. I can't say much on this just yet but I will say you this: don't worry. :-)'

  22. N

    Pathetic or marketing

    This tells me one of two things, either:

    1. Microsoft cant organise a download

    2. Its just marketing to up the hype

    Whatever it is, Ive every reason to suspect that Windows 7 will be, as one poster very correctly put it: "like a new car from Detroit, lots of chrome with the same crap underneath"

  23. UBfusion
    Paris Hilton

    VMWare appliance available...

    ... for those wishing to test drive it in a sandbox environment: (torrent, 191 seeders, 2.6GB Compressed/ 5.8GB Decompressed

    According to reports it works fine - good luck!

    Paris, 'cause her lucky number is 7.

  24. TrixyB
    Jobs Horns

    and to think I tried downloading this crud...

    That explains it then.


  25. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Dear Microsoft

    is it that hard to set-up a BitTorrent tracker? even private tracker if you insist. It would have saved you from adding dozens of servers and could let people have really great download speed!

    I guess people at MS really don't like other people's technologies...

  26. Robin Szemeti
    Paris Hilton

    Call it by its proper name

    Its not "Windows 7" its "Vista with a few GUI tweaks"

    When you consider that what is putting many millions of small businesses off upgrading is the problem of supporting two architectures (XP and Vista) I cant see how adding a bunch of new GUI features that 99% of office workers will ever use addresses this.

    Paris, she's dumb enough to install it.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns

    Got to hand it to the marketing dept

    Is it just me or are others suspicious about the current amount of 'hype' surrounding Win7?

    How convenient is it that MS (who must have one of the biggest online infrastructures in the world) are having problems with such a 'popular' beta download? Front page news anyone?

  28. Mike Bronze badge


    The direct download links work just the download pages don't link there: (I obtained these from the description on a torrent download!)



    Although I hope M$ haven't gone with the "start as you mean to go on" principle, because this windows 7 beta has a "feature" where it apparently scans the hard drive and any network shares (!!) and trashes any mp3 files it finds (!!!!) so make sure you install this hotfix before letting it lose on your network:



  29. Anonymous Coward

    This link works, or at least it did for me...

    I downloaded it from here about 11.00am GMT

    Now to pray my test machine survives. :)

  30. Anonymous Coward

    No surpise here.

    Although M$ isn't the only member of the self-inflicted DDoS club. It is odd that this isn't the first time they done this to themselves. I thought that these guys were supposed to be specialists in providing enterprise-class data center hosting and application services.

    Given that the aggregate of earlier Windows variants still predominate the corporate desktop, it's no surprise that the world+dog would want to check out Win7 to see if it's worth their time to build and QA an image or three for deployment. Or with XP now 6 years long in the tooth, whether they should just go back to debugging that Linux desktop build they were planning.

  31. John Dooley

    Monge Manager

    Sometimes Old Bill's lackey's do show a spark of creativity.

    Brilliant manipulation of the press. Announce a beta, purposely underprepare the hosting server, then make big spash with claiming massive demand for thier new product, so huge it requires them to rebuild thier servers.

    That is so good, expect to see Steve Jobs and Co copy it within 12 months.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    I know demand for this is enormous, but why is it taking so long for an entity the size of MS to add additional capacity? And what poor planning on their part anyway---it's not like they haven't offered beta products for download before...

    I watched the site go from "server too busy" to "not available" to "maybe later" around 3pm EST yesterday.

  33. Anonymous Coward

    bittorrent anyone?

    Have they never heard of bittorrent? it's not just for "pirated" stuff, many Linux distros use it to avoid the need for massive download bandwidth each time a new release comes out, too.

    Typical MS always trailing 10 years behind Linux...

  34. Norbie

    Well just got my key...

    ... and it's the same as the ones that other people are getting. Supposed to be 10 installs per person/product key but they are giving out very few product key, most people are getting the same ones.

    How on earth do they plan to limit this to 2.5 million people? Microsoft really have no idea what they are doing.

    Happy face for Microsoft giving everyone a free OS.

  35. Robb Dunphy


    Are you sure? Seems fine for me. Downloaded it from the MS site, and managed to get a key and all.

  36. Eric Dennis
    Thumb Down

    "Feature Complete"??

    Yea. Feature complete. Vista was suppose to be "Feature Complete" but WinFS was missing. Have fun with that Beta. I'm not touching it.

  37. kissingthecarpet

    Code? You sure?

    They only ever let me download binaries.

    Mines the one with the leaked Windows7.sln on the USB key in the pocket

  38. Farai

    I can confirm to the contrary...

    that i have just successfully downloaded BOTH betas (64-bit and 32-bit), and ALSO got both keys legally from the microsoft website via TechNet..

    It's on!

    It's back up and running!!

    Go get your keys!!!

    Mine's with two keys in the inner pocket - ciao!

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Another MS BPE

    Funny how often Microsoft claims to want us to have "the best possible experience".

    Anybody ever had such a thing from them?

  40. Simon Davidson
    Thumb Up

    Windows 7 Now Available

    Just had a look on the website and its now available. Going to take a couple hours for me to download though :(

  41. Emerson

    Beta Now Available

    As of this time, the Windows 7 Beta is now available for download.

  42. James Whale

    Beta download only working on IE!!

    Beta's just gone live and after several attempts at clicking on "Download Now" on the download page using FireFox 3, and nothing happening, I suddenly thought to try IE7... guess what? It worked first time - the Java applet installed and the MS Download Manager started.

    FF users - if you want the beta and it's not starting, switch to IE and try it there.

    Intentional? Or just sloppy coding by MS that their applet only works with IE?

    I sense a drama coming on...

  43. Anonymous Coward

    Uhmm for once MS got something right

    I was always told that the difference between 'alpha' and 'beta' was that 'alpha software' is not yet feature complete and highly likely to contain bugs, wheras 'beta software' is feature complete but may still contain significant bugs.

    But then I've been in the industry for over 15 years, so being such a noob what would I know :p

  44. Jared Vanderbilt

    Why not beta Win7 in your download network Mr. B?

    You first. I'll wait for gold.

  45. Simon Woodworth
    Thumb Up

    Available to download now

    It's working now. Took two attempts to get the download started but so far so good.

  46. Bernie Cavanagh
    Jobs Horns


    I'm actually downloading it now no problem. OK, I know I'm probably being a masochist but even the Vole has to have the benefit of the doubt occasionally.

  47. Rafael
    Paris Hilton

    Windows 7???

    Yeah, but is it really 7, I counted and it should be 45, yada yada yada

    (cue to a long discussion about which windows version is which)

    Where's the clueless moron icon? Oh, wait.

  48. Emo


    Will they be adding containers of servers then?

    One wonders...

  49. Doug Glass


    If it has webbed feet, a bill, waddles when it walks and quacks, it's a duck. For whatever reason, here is promising but not delivering. And that is Microsoft being Microsoft at it's very best. For whatever reason, promising but not delivering.

  50. Mark

    So where's the LiveCD?

    So I can test it out on my hardware?

    There isn't one?

    When is Windows going to be ready for the desktop...

  51. Joe Earl
    Gates Halo

    Seems to be working now

    It worked for me about 4-5 hours ago (19:00 10/01 GMT), just got the x86 version and 4 product keys

  52. Shusui

    What language do these guys speak?

    "... we are adding some additional infrastructure support to the properties before we post the public beta"

    The Plain English Campaign should offer their services to Redmond.

  53. This post has been deleted by its author

  54. Chris C

    Beta testing

    "The reality is, though, that no beta can be regarded as "feature complete". The beta process designed to thrash features and also take feedback on potential additions - although such additions are rare as much of the fundamental build work is considered finished by beta-test time."

    I must respectfully disagree. (Historically, at least) the beta testing process, like the alpha testing process before it, is designed to find and fix bugs, not to add or remove features.

    The beta, like the alpha, is supposed to be a full-featured, complete version of the product. First, you create the product. Then you run it through the (small user base) alpha testing phase to find bugs. Then you fix the bugs. Then you run it through the (expanded user base) beta testing phase to find bugs. Then you fix those bugs. Then you release the product. At no time during the alpha or beta testing phases should new features be added, and existing features should only be removed if they contain bugs which cannot be fixed within reasonable time/resource constraints.

    It's only because coders are lazy and (more importantly) corporations are greedy that "beta" is the new alpha testing, and "release to manufacturing" is the new beta testing.

  55. Martin Lyne

    Sounds like..

    Vista SP2 has been made even more Fantastifail!

    The only things that have made Vista better over XP for me were the Start Bar search functionality (necessary because the start menu programs seems to be unmanageable now, but still easier than trawling) and.. er.

    Having to make 4 clicks to get to my network connections rarther than XP's 2? No

    Having to Confirm 3 UAC dialogs when making and renaming a new folder? Not that either.

    Having to go to "More" then search for "type" when I want to organise a folder by "Type"? Nope.

    But at least I still have my beloved customised Quick Launch! Windows 7 is doing what now?

    32-bit limits people to 3Gb RAM, XP or Vista will keep everyone happy. Bullshit additions like new Media player (I use Winamp), better DRM (always a selling point..) and lower memory footprint (that should be a sodding fix, not a new OS, just install XP again) won't sell. Especially not at silly prices that MS loves.

    Patches and compatibility and drivers are what we need from microsoft, not another 20 operating systems. Or something actually *different*. But they've done themselves in, the users are used to the norm, anything too revolutionary won't sell, anything too similar isn't worth buying.

    Oh and no more IEs, please? If you can't get it right after 7 attempts, just fucking give up.

  56. Ross Fleming
    Thumb Down

    Marketing spin

    Call me cynical, but MS not having enough infrastructure to support a release? Please pull the other one - they pump out service packs and patches like it's water. Win XP service packs must be downloaded millions of times on release - granted they'll be smaller than Win 7 (6), but the frequency must exponentially greater.

    What's more likely, it's a spin. "Look how many people want this, why aren't you interested yet?". Or to put it in a South Park style, it's the Eric Cartman "You Can't Come" technique.

  57. Earl Kubaskie

    Seems to be up...

    I got it downloaded (3.5 gigs) in about an hour and a half this evening. Congestion must not be THAT bad.

  58. Tony Paulazzo
    Thumb Up

    Windows 7

    Been mucking around with it some and I gotta say, I think MS is heading for a world of hurt. This is what Vista should have been and the fact that people are showing such interest in it means they want the new improved Vista - sorry, Win7, but I doubt they'll wanna pay twice for it (and I include those like me who bought new hardware with Vista preinstalled).

    Whilst having no hard numbers it feels more responsive and drivers (so far) written for Vista work on it (inc my old Audigy2). WMP kind'a glitched out on me, and Zoom player causes Aero to turn off (which doesn't happen in Vista), but overall I think this is the real XP replacer.

    And like XP, I predict it'll be the most pirated piece of software on the planet - this will prove to be a morally grey area as anybody with Vista should be automatically upgraded to Win7 for free.

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