Windows 7 Beta Over Before it Began


windows_7_vienna_logo-1Just a quick update if you’re still trying to get at the Windows 7 beta. You can stop trying because it’s on hold according to CNET. They source to a post on the Windows team blog, but even hitting that gets me a “Server Busy” error. The gist of Microsoft’s message: “Due to very heavy traffic we’re seeing as a result of interest in the Windows 7 Beta, we are adding some additional infrastructure support to the properties before we post the public beta. We want to ensure customers have the best possible experience when downloading the beta, and I’ll be posting here again soon once the beta goes live. Stay tuned! We are excited that you are excited!

Maybe I’m just cranky and tired, but I’m sitting here sadly shaking my head. Yes, I realize that when you open up a beta for an OS that’s been earning pretty good impressions, you’re going to get hammered with server traffic. I truly sympathize with that situation. But if you’re a company that offers rock solid software and services to enterprises and consumers everywhere, you have to keep your own afloat. Even at a time like this. Anyway, I’m sure there’ll be an update once the situation sorts itself out. Maybe the BitTorrent leaks were a better idea? ;)


Ron P.

Im downloading now using the normal advertised Windows 7 Link. I do not knopw if they had originally employed you to use Download Manager but that seems to be the deal now.


Its back up, I got my key and even better: it activated!

Hit the main Windows 7 landing page for the link to get yours!


The CNET story above has a link to another site (Neowin, I think) that has direct links to download Win 7 Beta ISO’s (both x86 and x64) AND to get an activation key. I used those links to download the 64-bit ISO (3.2 GB, took about 4.5 hours on DSL) and to get a key (getting the key was the hardest — had to keep refreshing the “error” page for about an hour before I got one). So, even though “official” public access has been taken down, you can still get the beta directly from Microsoft.

Having said that, I agree with the comments that say this is a big FAIL on Microsoft’s part. They intentionally built up excitement for the beta, intentionally sought to limit its availability, and then completely failed to have the proper resources in place to deliver as expected. Free or not, beta or not, this IS Microsoft. This is their bread-and-butter. It’s not like they’ve never done anything like this before. Didn’t they learn anything from the Vista beta fiasco? Somebody (or -bodies) failed big time on this one.


Quite obviously, the download of the actual ISOs was not the problem. There are lots of direct links floating around and they download easily and with a very high performance.

The distribution and generation of the product keys was the weak spot of the story, so moving to P2P would probably not have resolved the issue.


Installed it on my MSI Wind and everything working great. Windows 7 seams much nicer then Vista. I’m comparing from the start I have 2GB on my MSI Wind and 2GB on my Kohjinsha SC3 with Vista. Windows 7 is using 688mb from the start and Vista 1.13GB of my RAM. Just been using Windows 7 for the last 30 minutes, going through all the settings. By the way all the drivers for the MSI Wind loaded except the Wi-Fi drivers which I just got from the MSI Wind website. Kevin you should have taken your Wind to CES. :)


Well I downloaded the torrent and if Microsoft had some sense they’d promote people to go grab the torrent (if they wanted to) and then just get a licence key from the Microsoft website. That shifts all the heavy lifting to P2P systems which is exactly what they do well (400KB/s here too Jake) and then Microsoft just need to handle the 2.5+ million requests for licence keys. Being a server/database supplier surely they could figure that bit out.

Anyway, That’s my plan and I’m sticking to it.


I downloaded both the 32- and 64-bit versions from TechNet yesterday. Was getting about 400K/sec download, so it wasn’t bad at all.


Gizmodo are reporting that the servers are back up and running now.

That means they were only down between midnight and 2am on a Friday night here in the UK ;)

Sean Brady

I was fortunate enough to get an MSDN copy Thursday. I am surprised that ms does not use bit torrent for this type of thing. I know that it could lead to an issue with fake torrents.


What a shame – this new OS get’s the same poor start as Windows Vista (that I personally like alot!) before it even hits the street. Sure 2.5 million beta testers on the hunt for ~ 3 GB of data is alot. But can’t you simply calculate what you need in terms of server infrastructures by bringing 2.5 mio downloaders for around 3 gig each together? What’s your name again? Microsoft? It really seems like you never learn…

Cheers, Lutz (who got the german version now from a “forum”, which hosted a copy of it at rapidshare…)


It IS only a beta – it still doesn’t show MS in a very good light. They have enough experience of the interest in their products that this should have been planned for in a much more professional fashion.


If it were something official, I agree, they should have their act together – but it’s only a beta.


Huh? This is a PR “own goal” of their own making – only available for one day and only a limited number of d/loads allowed? They should have KNOWN everyman and his dog would hit their servers and planned accordingly. Doesn’t hold out much hope for Azure and their SaaS strategy…

“Posted by: JBHTEX | January 9, 2009 at 4:54 pm

That’s pretty unfair. This is a 3.5 Gb download and MS servers are generally excellent. They’ve obviously underestimated demand and now they’re working to fix it….”


I just think that you’re making a big deal over nothing. People understand the difficulties involved from Microsoft’s point of view and I’m sure nobody minds that much if they have to wait a few more hours for what would be a difficult download under normal circumstances.

The other important point is that this is just the public beta. The people who really matter (in terms of actual beta testing) downloaded the images a couple of days ago from Connect.

Anyway, the downloads will be back up sooner or later and life will carry on.


Fortunately, I downloaded the beta from TechNet on Wednesday night… will be installing over the weekend to play around. :)

Everyone underestimates the interest in this type of stuff… but what do you think caused this “beta culture” that we live in? Afterall, if you build/release/post it…

Kevin C. Tofel

Jake, part of providing any service is estimating demand. Free or otherwise. As you said, they underestimated. Surest way to kill positive momentum is something like this.


Fair point. Can you imagine if Microsoft had been in charge of D-Day?

“Due to very heavy resistance we’re seeing as a result of interest in our invasion plans, we are adding some additional infrastructure support…”


That’s pretty unfair. This is a 3.5 Gb download and MS servers are generally excellent. They’ve obviously underestimated demand and now they’re working to fix it.

Also, don’t forget that its just a public beta. It’s not as if anyone paid for it.

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