Windows 8 RTM allegedly leaked already

On Wednesday, Microsoft released Windows 8 to manufacturing. Now, barely two days later, we’re hearing that the same Windows 8 build has already leaked into the wild, well ahead of the operating system’s October 26 commercial launch.

As CNet News reports, the leaked build appears to be Windows 8 Enterprise N. The "N" means the operating system doesn’t come bundled with Windows Media Player, per a European Commission ruling from several years back. CNet News notes the rapidity of the leak, which is surprising, given that MSDN developers aren’t scheduled to get their hands on the RTM version of Windows 8 until August 15.

WinBeta has posted some additional details, including a screenshot that looks fairly legit. The site says the leaked build can be found on BitTorrent sites as a 2.83GB ISO file with the file name, "MICROSOFT.WINDOWS.8.ENTERPRISE-N.RTM.X64.VOLUMN.ENGLISH.NON_BOOT_DVD-SAMOVARWZT." Note the "NON_BOOT" part. WinBeta speculates that the ISO might lack the files necessary to make it bootable; it also points out that the 2.83GB file size is a little on the small side. For reference, the x64 version of the Windows 8 Release Preview weighs in at 3.3GB.

It’s not clear whether the leak is genuine or not, in other words, but I’m sure adventurous users will have no problems figuring that out for themselves—so long as they don’t mind stepping on the wrong side of the law. Either way, it almost seems like a given that we’ll see further leaks after the MSDN release on August 15.

Comments closed
    • Sahrin
    • 7 years ago

    What do you mean ‘already’?

      • mnecaise
      • 7 years ago

      Well, betas and the RC have been available for some time, if you’re a developer. I don’t see what the rush is though… the RTM version will be available to technet and msdn subscribers in a couple days.

    • ronch
    • 7 years ago

    I see myself sticking with Win7 for a long time unless Win8 really knocks my socks off.

      • mnecaise
      • 7 years ago

      edit: replied to wrong thread. Sorry dude.

    • Krogoth
    • 7 years ago

    Saw this coming a mile away once the built went RTM.

    It is kinda hard to keep tight on a high profile target like Windows franchise.

    • Tristan
    • 7 years ago

    Thanks Ballmer !!!
    Good move for rapid adoption !!!

      • kvndoom
      • 7 years ago

      Considering how many people said they wouldn’t use it unless MS gave it away, maybe we’re on to something.. 😉

        • ronch
        • 7 years ago

        Heck, perhaps M$ should just make it open source!

    • JohnC
    • 7 years ago

    Meh… I’ll wait for 15th when it will be released on TechNet.

    • bthylafh
    • 7 years ago

    This appears to legit. I’ve got it working in a VMware Player VM and am posting this comment with IE10.

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 7 years ago

    I don’t get why they can’t just release the OS digitally. The $40 deal requires you buy it online anyway. If the OS is done, is being manufactured, then just put up the link and order page, let people go hog wild (if anyone is “wild” for Windows 8 to begin with). A lot of people are pirating it just to see what the RTM version is like.

    So Microsoft could resolve the whole thing by putting it up for digital sale right now. Plus, they could cancel a whole mess of discs, too.

      • mnecaise
      • 7 years ago

      Because they have to wait for the VARs, OEMs and retail partners to get their products ready and build stock so that when it’s released for general availability, regular people can get it. As far as the general public is concerned, the RTM event is basically meaningless. They will hear it’s available Oct 26th and line up to get it then.

      For the rest of us, it’ll be available for download at technet and msdn in a couple days — then you can play till your heart’s content. If you’re in a hurry… and you do a lot of tinkering… a basic technet subscription really is worth the money.

    • bthylafh
    • 7 years ago

    It’s not bootable because it’s a straight file archive, not an image. You have to make it bootable yourself. One way is to have a sufficiently large USB stick, create an NTFS or FAT32 partition on it & mark it active, then dump the contents of the installation folder (labeled “Win8rtm_vl”) into the root.

      • neoritz
      • 7 years ago

      Here’s a fairly easy to follow guide on how to create a bootable iso file from the leaked setup files:
      [url<]http://technoritz.com/post/28639838067/make-bootable-windows8-rtm-iso[/url<]

    • albundy
    • 7 years ago

    leak or no leak, I wanna know how many of those peeps will revert back to win7! poll time!

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      not me! i miss too much from 8

      • oldDummy
      • 7 years ago

      Seems to add an extra “click” for tasks.
      Will stay and kick the tires a bit.
      Using the 8400 build with a few updates.
      IMO, currently not a must have.

    • bjm
    • 7 years ago

    Well, since Windows 8 is now here (unofficially, at least), it might be a good time to throw a plug out to the good guys at: [url<]http://classicshell.sourceforge.net[/url<] For those not familiar with it, it was originally created to bring back the hierarchical Start menu -- long before Windows 8. The full screen replacement of the Start Menu has no doubt been one of the more controversial aspects of Windows 8. ClassicShell's implementation of the Start Menu is really clean and not hacky at all. By default, it captures the keyboard's Start key and opens the menu (You can choose the XP's Classic style, Luna, Vista's, or even their own custom Metro skin) while leaving Shift-Start to be used to call the Start Screen. And even better, they implemented a search box so you don't lose that capability either. There's an option as well to boot automatically into the desktop. You'll still see the start screen upon boot, but it really just becomes a splash screen at that point. Since the Start key's behavior is captured to the menu as well as the bottom left's Start Screen activation disabled, you don't ever have to see the Start Screen if you don't want to. Thought I'd share!

      • Wirko
      • 7 years ago

      The best of all worlds!

    • tay
    • 7 years ago

    Why would you want to warez it? You are going to be screwed without windows update. Or is there no “Microsoft Genuine Advantage”?

      • bthylafh
      • 7 years ago

      To see what’s changed between it and the last preview. Just put it on a virtual machine and delete it when you’re done.

      • Forge
      • 7 years ago

      Because there are ways around that. I’d be very interested in getting RTM bits, but I’d like the X64 standard, and preferably the retail, not Enterprise. Enterprise is VOL-only, any retail can be made to install any other version. Having N is nice, but I’d like that in addition, not as my only option.

      • destroy.all.monsters
      • 7 years ago

      Just an FYI – you don’t need Windows Update to update your Windows install (in general).

      I suspect it has as much to do with trying out the new thing – and doing so ahead of everyone else; or just getting your hands on new shiny.

      • Madman
      • 7 years ago

      If I understand correctly, RTM is the image of actual Windows disk that will go to a production.

      Therefore it should be possible to enter the purchased key when the OS is released and have a fully activated Windows.

      But I’m just guessing.

      Still, given it’s Windows 8 and Metro, I wonder if there will be people who will bother to download it at all.

    • bthylafh
    • 7 years ago

    Allegedly you’re supposed to take a bootable ISO from a released beta, clear it out, then put the contents of this leak into it to make it boot. Might even be able to replace just the install.wim file.

      • Forge
      • 7 years ago

      The size would match up with install.wim being missing. I’m guessing whatever the leak’s source was, has some customized install.wim, and the leaker wanted to distribute only the generic parts. So yes, +1, I think you’re right.

        • bthylafh
        • 7 years ago

        I don’t think that’s right, because install.wim’s got the actual operating system, doesn’t it? With install.wim being gone you’ve got nothing but the infrastructure to install the operating system.

        The install.wim in my copy of the latest beta is 2.8 GB, which is about the size of this leaked image. I’d wager that we’re getting the .wim and not a whole lot else.

          • Ryu Connor
          • 7 years ago

          boot.wim is what the DVD leverages in a pre-installation environment.

          install.wim is the captured image of the OS.

          You don’t need (the official) boot.wim to lay down the install.wim image, it just makes it easier for the laymen.

            • Forge
            • 7 years ago

            Good catch, I tumbled the two. Thanks for the correction.

    • bjm
    • 7 years ago

    If it’s just a matter of the contents not being bootable, you can easily just copy the boot image from a Windows 7 disc while retaining the Windows 8 data/file structure. Windows 8 uses the same BOOTMGR, so it’ll do.

      • Ryu Connor
      • 7 years ago

      You can just boot into Windows PE and use ImageX to extract the contents of the .WIM file.

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