AMD64 version of Windows enters pre-beta

The Inquirer is reporting that resellers are being invited to take part in pre-beta testing for Microsoft's AMD64 version of Windows. Since the Athlon 64 should run 32-bit code faster than current Athlon XPs, AMD isn't worried about the fact that an AMD64 version of Windows won't be available when the Athlon 64 launches. However, if the operating system is only in pre-beta now, it seems unlikely that the final version will be available before next year.

Currently, only resellers are able to get in on the pre-beta action, but I'd hope that Microsoft would let early Athlon 64 adopters join some sort of beta program when the processor launches. The Athlon 64's 32-bit performance should be a major selling point for the processor, but it would be a shame to see its 64-bit capabilities go untapped by Windows users until next year.

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