Some enthusiast sites are predicting that Microsoft will peg the release-to-manufacturing date of Windows 7 to July 13, the start of the company's Worldwide Partner Conference. A report on GeekSmack.net suggests that Microsoft will finish the OS by the 13th and post the software to its MSDN and TechNet developer sites shortly thereafter.
Although the timing would certainly be convenient, it's also the case that Microsoft is primarily focused on making sure it has stamped out any last-minute bugs.
Microsoft said when it announced the October ship date for Windows 7 that it would have to finalize the code and get it to computer makers by the second half of July.
To meet that goal, Microsoft is no doubt doing long-term regression testing on any builds it thinks could be the final one.
Another Windows 7 date to keep in mind is July 11. That's when Microsoft plans to end a preorder program through which people can buy an upgrade version of Windows 7 Home Premium for $49 or Windows 7 Professional for $99. The software maker has also said that preorders could end earlier if it hits a predetermined sales level, although it hasn't said how many copies it is willing to sell.
The preorder program has been a hit on Amazon, where the Home Premium upgrade remains the top seller in both the software section as well as the overall "computers and add-ons" category.