If you've been itching to try out Windows 8 and get a first-hand look at the overhauled user interface, your window of opportunity just arrived. Microsoft unveiled its next major OS yesterday at its Build conference in Anaheim, California, and then made the developer preview available for download.
There are three versions to choose from:
Windows Developer Preview English, 32-bit (x86)
Windows Developer Preview English, 64-bit (x64)
Windows Developer Preview with developer tools English, 64-bit (x64)
The developer tools gives code monkeys an opportunity to build and test Metro style applications, with Metro being the name of Microsoft's new touchscreen-friendly interface similar to the one in Windows Phone 7. The radical new look represents how Microsoft "reimagined Windows," and if you're not hot-to-trot with the developer build, you can still see the OS in action by watching Microsoft's keynote here.
Noticeably absent from the pile of downloads is a build for ARM processors. Though Windows 8 isn't ready for preview on ARM-based systems, Microsoft says any apps developed with the development tools will run seamlessly on both platforms (x86 and ARM).
The Developer Preview doesn't support upgrading from Windows 7 and requires a clean install, and it's important to note that this isn't a beta release. That means it will be missing some drivers and features that will find their way into later builds. All that said, if you want to kick the tires and take Windows 8 out for a spin, or simply learn more about Microsoft's next generation OS, get to clicking!