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MSBLOG Exclusive: Windows Vista testers get free copy of RTM

November 16th, 2006 by Zack Whittaker


Not everyone saw it coming… nothing came in Office 2007 for testers but Vista was always a hell of a lot bigger than Office 2007. Windows Vista released to manufacturing last week, and MSDN and TechNet Plus subscribers could get it… and those with Volume Licensing access… and now fellow testers can!

If you’re a Vista tester, Windows Vista Business (by default, Ultimate if you ask for it) is yours – check your email account associated with your Connect profile. If you qualify (if, that is) then you’ll get a free copy in form of a unique Connect invitation to a new sub-page with the build on. You must have submitted one bug at least to get a free copy and be on the technical beta.

You can activate the copy of Vista unlimited times on one machine (not entirely sure how the licensing thing works, just going off internal sources). Anyway, those who have contributes certainly deserve it – enjoy your reward 🙂

Update: Due to the load from Connect, MSDN, TechNet, etc. the X64 images have been removed.  If you have already begun a download, you will be able to finish, but no new X64 downloads will be permitted until the load has lessened. Additionally, the Vista team will be intermittently stopping new downloads for periods of time when the servers reach capacity. 

On a side note: Remember the last time that the Connect servers were having this much trouble at the Beta 2 Launch? Well, the connect sercers are currently seeing ~2.5x the traffic that we did for Beta 2.  No wonder Connect is suffering. 🙂

Posted in Beta News, Windows Vista | 90 Comments »

This entry was posted on Thursday, November 16th, 2006 at 11:50 pm and is filed under Beta News, Windows Vista. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

90 Responses

  1. Artur Says:

    Hi, how can I get free copy of Vista ? Could you give me a link to download or something else ?

  2. Artur Says:

    How can I get free copy of Vista to test it ?

  3. Adam Says:

    I called in and submited a several mistakes but I have’t recieved my email either :/ Anyone have anyguess what we shoud do about this?

  4. Patrick S Says:

    well …I hope i get one ,but i think you had to be a PAID Member
    of MSDN to be in the technical beta…and thats over $1000.00
    for a subscription. so a lot cheaper to goto the store or an OEM copy
    Err no? Be be in the technical beta you had to be invited to beta test by Microsoft! MSDN is a completely seperate thing!

    I called in and submited a several mistakes but I have’t recieved my email either :/ Anyone have anyguess what we shoud do about this?
    As i said above: Ask in the NG’s or email the Vista team (i suspect they are getting sick of people asking but give it a try anyway) Also include in the email the ID numbers of the Bugs you submitted (you can see this on Connect under Feedback)

  5. michal Says:

    Hey. How can I be a windows vista beta tester???

  6. Robak Says:


  7. alter Says:

    Well. I am felling upset cos Beta Experience users I guess are not included. I hope I am wrong but I don’t think so. Just a few first days of my testing was over 200 bug reports, later I’ve sent much more so I think I did a few things

  8. Daniel Says:

    When are they sending the emails? I have submitted several bugs for Vista RC1 and RC2 and no email! whats going on?

  9. Moshpit Says:

    I’m hoping Zack will come back and actually read the comments. There’s more then a few of us here who obviously qualify, yet 3 days after it was announced for download none of us have seen any email link. Don’t let us down Zack, we didn’t let you guys down.

  10. Adam Says:

    I totally agree with moshpit, please don’t let us, those who helped the beta, down.

  11. sen my free copy email Says:

    free copy

    michael hagelquist ,skive 7800 jutland denmark

    i am a beta boy

    thanks for all

  12. sen my free copy email Says:

    free copy

  13. Dez Says:

    I was part of the Customer Preview Program starting at Beta 2 and submitted a few bugs, although not through the Connect program, but via the beta feedback tools for Vista and Office(send a smile). I understand though that the CPP is totally different from being part of pre Beta 2 testing. I can only imagine how many bugs Vista had prior to Beta 2.

    The people who worked hard and made Beta 2 and therefore RC1 and RC2 deserve to be rewarded, and its nice that Microsoft has done so.

    Hopefully I can get on the Vienna beta trial.

  14. Patrick S Says:

    Thats the attidude Dez…. Youre the sorta person they need!

  15. Sean Says:

    Anyone who has submitted at least one bug while has not get the invition may send an email to with the feedback ID.

  16. Moshpit Says:

    Can anybody confirm what “Sean says” posted?

  17. Thomas Palmer Says:

    Looks like Sean might be trying to scam us, that e-mail address does not even look legit. However, if he did find something, it would be nice if told us instead of trying to …basically steal from us.

  18. Dave Says:

    All employees at Microsoft appreciate the efforts of all the Beta testers who jointly assist us to develop products to better suit their needs. Thank you. I hope you are happy with this new release & it makes you more productive in work & play.
    That said. I do not believe we have made such an offer & would suggest to those reading this article they should not spend too much time on it.
    As a MS Employee I’ve asked a number of different people/groups if they created or were aware of such an offer. Or if they were aware of anything that we said that could’ve created such an expectation. Not one said they were aware of such an offer. Many gave reasons why we would not make it. These are the people that make those types of decisions.
    It is possible that the author may have misunderstood some aspect of the Early Adopter Program where occasionally we offer a variety of resources (sometimes this includes a discount on product) to participating large organisations who deploy the product in significant numbers prior to the Release of the Product. This is to ensure we’ve sufficiently tested the “Large enterprise” scenarios & to ensure that the release is truly enterprise ready.
    I hope this clears the air on this.

  19. Patrick S Says:

    David have forwarded you the email to your Microsoft Address regarding this topic… This will further prove to you that it is indeed a real offer that you guys are giving to Vista testers who have submitted one bug or more.

    Patrick S

  20. yskwon Says:

    very good. thanks a lot

  21. Lutz Frank Says:

    … sorry to bother you, but I can’t hold back my disappointment on the latest Vista-Beta – after having now contributed as technical beta tester for nearly twenty years – finding now on Connect the statement:

    “Free Copy of Vista – To qualify you must have submitted a bug on Connect during the beta.”.

    I’ve started testing OS for you with all the OS versions since Windows 95 from Millennium till now Longhorn aka. Vista. And I’ve been always proud to be able to contribute to the Microsoft community- my Beta ID I know by heart is “375885” – but the sentence above did highly disappoint me … OK, I wasn’t able to provide an accepted Bug for Vista this testing cycle but I spent numerous hours creating and restoring images on my test machine, loading the latest test version and installing them, testing and fighting the little things which are the reason I love being a beta tester – even had some fights with my family spending too many time “for free”. The complimentary copy received was always seen as a sign of appreciation for all the hours spent and the efforts put into the program. (It was just a symbol – I easily could have bought them myself).

    The first time feeling a bit sad was after the sudden finish of the MCE Beta, which ended just in the note to return the test equipment – not even a letter/e-mail expressing the appreciation (which would have been enough). But seeing the notice on Connect on the eligibility to receive this little gift tops it.

    After heaving spent several hundreds of hours and dedicated terrabytes of bandwidth to Microsoft for free, I would have expected something else.

    Sorry, I had to ‘unload’ this from my soul …

  22. Ben Anderson Says:

    I feel your pain dude. The only person at a loss here is Microsoft.

  23. bhoh Says:

    Wow! Unbelievable…^^
    If I’m a Vista tester, it’s great chance in my life..
    God Bless for Windows Vista.. haha

  24. Josue Barahona Says:

    OK Nice!

  25. mondea Says:

    Can I send mail to Vista Beta Team to offer me to get this RTM copy?

  26. Prashant Says:

    Vista always comes up with a COM SURROGATE error. Every time u open up a folder it gives you this kinda error.
    Secondly, with RC1 the system always crashed once i installed the Sigmatel HD Audio driver.
    Vista is not compatible with Sony Ericsson PC Suite. Even under compatibility mode it does not allow you to install the PC Suite Software.

  27. Dez Says:

    Hey can I ask a quick question:

    Is this a legit Microsoft website

    It says you can watch videos to get a free copy of Office 2007/Windows Vista (you just pay taxes)? I just want to know if its not a phishing site?


  28. lukefirewalker Says:

    Could’nt get the free version of vista:Was this a scam?

  29. AriGuz Says:

    I tested many version of Vista and not recived any mail of free copy. When I joined on Beta program I did not hope to receive nothing in return, but now, the form with which she ignored people who step many hours lowering, installing and proving the different versions generates indignation.
    I will hope the date of the launching to buy the final version and I will have left as consolation that I put my sand grain to contribute with the same one.

  30. Your Windows Vista Ultimate Product Key Is Ready!! » MSBLOG Says:

    […] Last month it was announced by Microsoft that testers would get a Free copy of Windows Vista RTM for those who had submitted One or more bug in the Technical Beta (it seems not many people can understand those two words =/ ) […]

  31. lee Says:


  32. choo young jin Says:

    I wish connect window vistar

  33. Andrew Says:

    i submited a bug, i got no email 🙁

    /me starts to cry…

  34. Alif Jan Says:

    Hi Try vista themes and and wallpapers. And lots of other stuff here for vista users.

  35. Anothai Wimolkaew Says:

    Can’t install DBT-120 Bluetooth usb

  36. Peter Says:

    I just saw this and I was wondering what if you did not notice a bug? I tested the os on my desktop and did everything to it that I normaly would. Heck I just recently reinstalled my old HDD with XP. So I guess people who had a sucessfull test (no problems) are being left out!?

  37. Patrick S Says:

    If you did see a bug i guess you could email it through to the Vista team, HOWEVER this prob wont be fixed untill another service pack or the next version of Windows aka Vienna.

    Left out of what?

  38. xxdesmus Says:

    I beat you by a whole day on this “exclusive” …way to go.

  39. BSHER Says:

    i submited a bug, i got no email

  40. gaston Says:

    been testing since 5384 all the way through rc2 and havent gotten no email what do i need to do??? I reported many bugs from creative drivers causing bluescreens to to Azureus crapping out. Is there anyway to contact them.