The latest pre-release version of the Windows 8 operating system will become available during the first week of June, a Microsoft executive said on Tuesday in Tokyo.
The Windows 8 "Release Preview" will be the most complete version to date of the upcoming version of the operating system, said Steven Sinofsky, President of Windows and Windows Live Division. He spoke at Microsoft's Windows Developer Days, an event to teach developers about Windows 8.
Microsoft has said that Windows 8 will be released this year, with media reports saying it will be launched in October.
June's Release Preview of the OS could possibly be followed by more pre-release versions, according to Microsoft Japan spokesman Masaki Ida. Typically a release candidate is a time-limited version of an operating system that's nearly complete and is shared with the public as a final test.
Microsoft released a Developer Preview of Windows 8 last year, and then a Consumer Preview in February. The latest version had notable performance issues, including with its touch interface.
Windows 8 will come in four official versions: Home, Pro and Enterprise for PCs with x86 processors, and Windows 8 RT for tablets and other devices with ARM processors.
The current version of the OS, Windows 7, was released to the general public in October 2009.