Microsoft have released the second consumer preview of Windows 8, making it the second ‘alpha’ release (although no ones calling it that). Next comes beta, then the RTM, exciting stuff. We had a quick look at what changed over the previous release, and found some of the annoyances we encountered smoothed out, notability the keyboard\mouse interface (that old method ey?), and various other little quirks which made usability really alien.
You can grab a copy here, though be warned - we had some fun experiences with the ISO that truly did remind us of our first ever Windows XP betas, here’s how it went. We start with the ISO installation on a virtual machine. The guest had 4GB of RAM, and we gave 2GB of that to the Windows 8 machine. Probably a little too much in retrospect, because before even booting - the machine ground to a halt, and became unusable. So much for that plan.
Next, we moved to something slightly meatier, an ESX server - Armed to the teeth with memory, processors and storage space - we booted the ISO to be greeted with the very first blue screen of Windows 8. A quick look around the MSDN forums shows others are clearly encountering this on virtual installations, but none of the fixes seem to work for our meaty ESX server, alas we’ll keep trying, and hope you get Windows 8 up and running soon, but it’s not a great start, is it?