No MSDN or TechNet? There's a Windows 8 "Eval" for that

If you are developer and are bummed that you don't have an MSDN or TechNet account but want to get your hands on Windows 8 today, Microsoft has a solution for you. Microsoft is offering a 90 day trial of Windows 8 for developers if you agree to their terms. Microsoft states that the trial is for Enterprise individuals who want test out the product before purchasing a license:

This evaluation provides a 90-day trial of Windows 8 Enterprise edition. Both 32-bit and 64-bit versions are available as ISO images in the following languages: Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), English, English (UK), French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese (Brazil), and Spanish. In order to use this evaluation, you must register and the product must be activated online with Microsoft-hosted activation and validation services. Microsoft does not provide technical support for this software.

The terms are straight forward, you have 90 days to try out the product and your applications, afterwards, you must purchase a license as the trial is not extendable. Microsoft states:

Things to Know Before You Start

  • The evaluation edition will expire and cannot be upgraded.
  • To upgrade, the evaluation must be uninstalled and a non-evaluation version of Windows must be re-installed from your original installation media.
  • Consider running the evaluation edition in a virtual environment or installing on a separate hard drive or partition. The will allow you to upgrade your original Windows installation to Windows 8.
  • During registration (required) you must login with a Microsoft account and provide your name, e-mail address and country.
  • You are required to activate the product online within 10 days after installing.
  • Once the evaluation is installed, you cannot upgrade. To revert to a previous version of Windows, you must do a clean install from your original installation media.

Activation and Usage Guidelines

  • Back up your files and settings before installing this evaluation and again prior to the 90-day expiration.
  • Upon installation, you will have 10 days to activate this evaluation online. Windows will prompt you to activate. A product key is not required for this software.
  • You must complete activation before August 15, 2013, to use this evaluation.
  • Once you activate, you have up to 90 days to use the software. You can track the amount of time you have left by referring to the "watermark" in the lower right corner of the Windows desktop.
  • If you fail to activate this evaluation within the 10-day grace period, or if your evaluation period expires, the desktop background will turn black, you will see a persistent desktop notification indicating that the system is not genuine, and the PC will shut down every hour losing unsaved work.
  • Following the evaluation period, you will need to replace the operating system on your test computer and reinstall all your programs and data. It is not possible to upgrade the evaluation to a licensed working version of Windows 8. A clean installation is required.

So, if you agree to these terms and are willing to try out Windows 8 for 90 days for development and evaluation purposes, you can download Windows 8 right now. But, read the fine print carefully, you will not be able to upgrade this install after the expiration of the trial is over and will have to do a clean-install of Windows post trial.

Download: Windows 8 32bit | Windows 8 64bit

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36 Comments

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I have to agree with warwagon, Microsoft fails they should of let you Purchase it and use a trial until is time to ship the OS in October 26th, and let you run a upgrade and activate the full genuine copy... fail on there part...

David085 said,
I have to agree with warwagon, Microsoft fails they should of let you Purchase it and use a trial until is time to ship the OS in October 26th, and let you run a upgrade and activate the full genuine copy... fail on there part...

So you intentionally ignores the part where this trial is for enterprise? Not for average home users? Like seriously?

FarCry3r said,

So you intentionally ignores the part where this trial is for enterprise? Not for average home users? Like seriously?

Whether or not this is the Enterprise version is neither here nor there.
What these members are saying is correct. MS should introduce a a trial version for the general public that can be upgraded if they so desire.
They've missed a trick.

Well that sucks that you can't try it out and then buy a license and activate the trial copy. That is what Microsoft should have done. Hell if that was the case I would install it on on my workstation to see if I can get use to it. Then if I like it I would have bought a license. Shame.

At this point Microsoft NEEDS to give everyone a sure fire way to try windows 8. This would have been a FANTASTIC idea if you could buy and activate it without a reinstall.

FAIL

Microsoft can you please get your head out of your ass!

Edited by warwagon, Aug 15 2012, 6:33pm :

warwagon said,
Well that sucks that you can't try it out and then buy a license and activate the trial copy. That is what Microsoft should have done. Hell if that was the case I would install it on on my workstation to see if I can get use to it. Then if I like it I would have bought a license. Shame.

At this point Microsoft NEEDS to give everyone a sure fire way to try windows 8. This would have been a FANTASTIC idea if you could buy and activate it without a reinstall.

FAIL

Microsoft can you please get your head out of your ass!

This. I will stick with the Release Preview until the final version, Microsoft have taken a terrible decision to limit an OS to 90 days and after that in order to use your pc need to do a clean reinstall, this is simply stupid.

warwagon said,
Well that sucks that you can't try it out and then buy a license and activate the trial copy. That is what Microsoft should have done. Hell if that was the case I would install it on on my workstation to see if I can get use to it. Then if I like it I would have bought a license. Shame.

At this point Microsoft NEEDS to give everyone a sure fire way to try windows 8. This would have been a FANTASTIC idea if you could buy and activate it without a reinstall.

FAIL

Microsoft can you please get your head out of your ass!

Why is that a shame? This version is supposed to be for enterprises. Like an enterprise would install this version on their systems (to all of their users) and then upgrade? Of course not. Think before you comment...

warwagon said,
Well that sucks that you can't try it out and then buy a license and activate the trial copy. That is what Microsoft should have done. Hell if that was the case I would install it on on my workstation to see if I can get use to it. Then if I like it I would have bought a license. Shame.

At this point Microsoft NEEDS to give everyone a sure fire way to try windows 8. This would have been a FANTASTIC idea if you could buy and activate it without a reinstall.

FAIL

Microsoft can you please get your head out of your ass!

this is absolutely laughable. the os doesnt come out for another few months,and theyre giving you a trial. for you to bitch about that is a complete joke. if you dont like it, wait a few months.

VdG said,

Why is that a shame? This version is supposed to be for enterprises. Like an enterprise would install this version on their systems (to all of their users) and then upgrade? Of course not. Think before you comment...

.

Ok so it's for enterprises. Still fail. Seeing Windows 8 just hit RTM and isn't for sale they should have let anyone who wanted to download it get an eval copy... use it for 90 days to see if they like it and if they do once it becomes for sale they can GIVE MICROSOFT MONEY!!! Then buy a license.

So Still FAIL!

vcfan said,

this is absolutely laughable. the os doesnt come out for another few months,and theyre giving you a trial. for you to bitch about that is a complete joke. if you dont like it, wait a few months.

+1

warwagon said,
.

Ok so it's for enterprises. Still fail. Seeing Windows 8 just hit RTM and isn't for sale they should have let anyone who wanted to download it get an eval copy... use it for 90 days to see if they like it and if they do once it becomes for sale they can GIVE MICROSOFT MONEY!!! Then buy a license.

So Still FAIL!

It might be just me, but I think you have no idea what you're talking about. Do you have any idea how big enterprises think about new operating systems?

About your new point of view (in your latest comment): didn't you read the news about the RTM and DP? I believe they were free previews?

vcfan said,

this is absolutely laughable. the os doesnt come out for another few months,and theyre giving you a trial. for you to bitch about that is a complete joke. if you dont like it, wait a few months.

If they are "Giving you a trial" why not let them just PAY YOU, and keep using what they've been using for 90 days. Why make people go through the hassle of reinstalling?

warwagon said,

If they are "Giving you a trial" why not let them just PAY YOU, and keep using what they've been using for 90 days. Why make people go through the hassle of reinstalling?

Shut up and accept you have no idea what you are talking about. Youre making me laugh even more

warwagon said,
.

Ok so it's for enterprises. Still fail. Seeing Windows 8 just hit RTM and isn't for sale they should have let anyone who wanted to download it get an eval copy... use it for 90 days to see if they like it and if they do once it becomes for sale they can GIVE MICROSOFT MONEY!!! Then buy a license.

So Still FAIL!


In the environment I work in, any user with this 90 day trial install who wanted to activate it and keep their machine as it is would be laughed at and the PC reimaged.

Manually install your OS at home, here... use the "approved" image and STFU.

There is no fail here.

zeke009 said,

In the environment I work in, any user with this 90 day trial install who wanted to activate it and keep their machine as it is would be laughed at and the PC reimaged.

Manually install your OS at home, here... use the "approved" image and STFU.

There is no fail here.

+1 (again)

warwagon said,
Well that sucks that you can't try it out and then buy a license and activate the trial copy. That is what Microsoft should have done. Hell if that was the case I would install it on on my workstation to see if I can get use to it. Then if I like it I would have bought a license. Shame.

At this point Microsoft NEEDS to give everyone a sure fire way to try windows 8. This would have been a FANTASTIC idea if you could buy and activate it without a reinstall.

FAIL

Microsoft can you please get your head out of your ass!

Are you running Windows 7 today (or have a license for same)? If it turns out that you *want* Windows 8, it will cost you no more than $50USD to upgrade (and to Windows 8 Pro, at that).

Or you can be safe/conservative and run it in a VM (which I will do on my WS 2012 partition) while backing up the ISO itself to DVD, USB, or both.

Actually, it does come with Media Foundation (this is NOT the N version, which lacks Media Foundation by design/default).

I hear what warwagon is saying.
by offering no route to upgrade direct from the trial, MS is closing of an easy route to collect profits from people who want to stay with it after they've tried it.

PaCpiS said,
Worthless !

I would probably had bothered if I was able to non-eval it with a proper product key (which I do intend to purchase). But meh, I'm fine with the consumer preview for a few more weeks.

SekaiStory said,
downloading Will replace it with my Release Preview dual boot.

Can I dual boot between Windows 7 and the eval of Windows 8?

Mando said,
You must complete activation before August 15, 2013, to use this evaluation.
thats today! wtf!

2013 is not this year.

Mando said,
You must complete activation before August 15, 2013, to use this evaluation.
thats today! wtf!

did u miss 2013??