If you haven’t grabbed your free beta copy of Windows 7 yet, there’s good news: you’ve now got 2 weeks to do so.
Microsoft made the offer Saturday evening after what started as a well received offer turned into a potential PR disaster for Microsoft as servers failed and many people were simply unable to get their hands on the promise download.
Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc writes on the Windows 7 blog:
Due to an enormous surge in demand, the download experience was not ideal so we listened and took the necessary steps to ensure a good experience. We have clearly heard that many of you want to check out the Windows 7 Beta and, as a result, we have decided remove the initial 2.5 million limit on the public beta for the next two weeks (thru January 24th). During that time you will have access to the beta even if the download number exceeds the 2.5 million unit limit.
While the move will be welcomed by many, I’ve got a better proposal: why doesn’t Microsoft give Windows 7 away for free, not just a time limited beta, but the end product. A free upgrade from the fail that was Vista might go along way in winning Microsoft fans and also counter some of the damage Vista has done. Better still: open source it. All these beta’s floating around are going to get their expiry dates cracked anyway, and tens of millions of people won’t be buying a copy now they’ve got a free copy, so why not go the next step.