Windows Vista Beta 2, RC1 and RC2 set to expire

On 31 May 2007, all Customer Preview Program (CPP) pre-release versions of Windows Vista will expire.  If you are running a pre-release version of Windows Vista (Beta 2, RC1 or RC2), you will begin to receive warning notifications about the upcoming expiration on 18 May.  To avoid work disruption and loss of data, we strongly recommend […]

On 31 May 2007, all Customer Preview Program (CPP) pre-release versions of Windows Vista will expire.  If you are running a pre-release version of Windows Vista (Beta 2, RC1 or RC2), you will begin to receive warning notifications about the upcoming expiration on 18 May.  To avoid work disruption and loss of data, we strongly recommend that customers running any of these pre-release versions of Windows Vista migrate their PCs to the final version of Windows Vista prior to 31 May.

For more information on migrating away from CPP versions, please go to http://www.windowsvista.com/preview.mspx.  We've included below a listing of frequently asked questions to help those of you still running a pre-release version of Windows Vista on your PCs to get started.

CPP Expiration FAQ

1. Can I install editions of Windows Vista other than Windows Vista Ultimate?

Yes, it is possible for you to install other editions (except for Windows Vista Enterprise) of Windows Vista (e.g., Windows Vista Home Premium).  To install a different edition, you will need to purchase the Upgrade version of that edition and perform a clean installation.  You must back up any data, as this process will overwrite all data that you have on your hard disk or on your installation partition.  The overwritten data will be lost and unrecoverable.

2. Are there any discounts available to Customer Preview Program participants?

There are no product discounts specifically for participants in the Customer Preview Program; however, because you are using a pre-release version of Windows Vista Ultimate, you can purchase and use the Upgrade version of Windows Vista.

3. What will happen to my data after the expiration date?

After 31 May 2007, customers who continue to use pre-release versions of Windows Vista will be able to log in for 2-hour sessions to retrieve data.  After 2 hours of use, the PC will automatically reboot without providing the opportunity to save data.  The opportunity to log in normally for these 2-hour sessions will be available only until 28 August 2007.  It is strongly recommended that PC users running any of these pre-release versions of Windows Vista migrate their PCs to the final version of Windows Vista or another operating system prior to 31 May.

4. What will happen to my PC after the expiration date?

After 31 May 2007, customers who continue to use pre-release versions of Windows Vista will be able to log in for 2-hour sessions to retrieve data.  After 2 hours of use, the PC will automatically reboot without providing the opportunity to save data.  The opportunity to log in normally for these 2-hour sessions will only be available until 28 August 2007.  It is strongly recommended that PC users running any of these pre-release versions of Windows Vista migrate their PCs to the final version of Windows Vista or another operating system prior to 31 May.

5.  Is there a breakdown of the upgrade options available to users of the various CPP pre-releases?

From/To 

Windows Vista Ultimate RTM

Other editions  of Windows Vista RTM

Previous version of Windows

Windows Vista Beta 2

Clean install with Ultimate Upgrade

Clean install with Upgrade version of desired edition

Clean install with full version

Windows Vista RC1

In-place upgrade or clean install with Ultimate Upgrade

Clean install with Upgrade version of desired edition

Clean install with full version

Windows Vista RC2

Clean install with Ultimate Upgrade

Clean install with Upgrade version of desired edition

Clean install with full version

A clean install means your current version of Windows, including all of your files, settings, and programs, is automatically replaced.  You must back up any data as this process will overwrite any data that you have on your hard disk or on your installation partition.  The overwritten data will be lost and unrecoverable.

An in-place upgrade means you can install Windows Vista and keep your programs, files and settings from your current version of Windows.  It is still strongly recommended that you back up any data prior to initiating the upgrade.

6. Can I install Windows XP on my PC?

Yes, it is possible for you to install any operating system including Windows XP on your PC.  To install Windows XP on your PC, you will need the CDs of the full version of Windows XP or the original OEM CDs that came with your PC (if any).  You must back up any data as this process will overwrite any data that you have on your hard disk or on your installation partition.  The overwritten data will be lost and unrecoverable.

7. Can I "roll back" to Windows XP?

As was noted at the outset of the Customer Preview Program, you cannot roll back to the previous operating system installation -- you will either have to purchase and install the final released edition of Windows Vista or re-install a previous version of Windows.

Please, do yourself a favor and upgrade to any edition of the RTM version of Windows Vista before 31 May.

Source:→ Windows Vista Team Blog

Microsoft, Windows Vista, Beta 2, RC1, RC2, Release Candidate, Expiry, Featured News, Announcement