Developers and IT pros: Download Windows 8.1 RTM, Visual Studio 2013 RC and Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM now

Starting Sept. 9, Microsoft is extending availability of the current Windows 8.1, Windows 8.1 Pro and Windows Server 2012 R2 release to manufacturing (RTM) builds to the developer and IT professional communities via MSDN and TechNet subscriptions. The Windows 8.1 RTM Enterprise edition will be available through MSDN and TechNet for businesses later this month. Additionally, Microsoft is making available the Visual Studio 2013 Release Candidate, which you can download here.

“We heard from you that our decision to not initially release Windows 8.1 or Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM bits was a big challenge for our developer partners as they’re readying new Windows 8.1 apps and for IT professionals who are preparing for Windows 8.1 deployments,” said Corporate Vice President Steve Guggenheimer in a blog post. “We’ve listened, we value your partnership, and we are adjusting based on your feedback. As we refine our delivery schedules for a more rapid release cadence, we are working on the best way to support early releases to the various audiences within our ecosystem.”

Visual Studio 2013 RC enables development teams to build, deliver and manage apps that take advantage of today’s devices and services. With the release of Visual Studio 2013 RC, Microsoft has made available additional features and functionality to enhance developer and development team productivity and agility. For more information on what’s new in Visual Studio 2013, see the blog post from S. Somasegar.

With these updated platform and tools bits, developers can build and test their Windows 8.1 apps. The RTM versions of tools, services and platform are required for store submissions, which will open up for new Windows 8.1 apps beginning at general availability on Oct. 18.

“Given the accelerated rate of technological advancement we continue to see in the industry and here at Microsoft, it’s an exciting time to be an app builder,” Guggenheimer said. “We recognize the critical role developers play – the breadth of our apps ecosystem is a key pillar of the Windows experience. It’s an essential end-to-end relationship – we deliver the tools, services and platform to give developers the flexibility and opportunity to innovate and build experiences for Windows that make all our lives more productive and fun.”

For more information and resources, read Guggenheimer’s blog post.

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Steve Clarke
Microsoft News Center Staff