As someone who has closely watched every major Windows development process since Windows 95 and seen them all slip further and further behind schedule, Windows 7 has been a happy surprise. Microsoft originally hinted that it would ship in early 2010, then told computer manufacturers it would be available in the fall. Now with the public beta getting a very positive reception it looks like Windows 7 might make it out the door before the end of summer.
The hint is contained in a long and rather dense post on the official Windows 7 Engineering Blog by the head of Widnows development, Microsoft Senior vice-President Steven Sinofsky.In it, he notes the success of the beta, says Microsoft sees no need for a second beta, and reveals that the next version of Windows 7 to go out to testers will be Release Candidate 1. If no serious problems turn up in a release candidate, it is typically followed by a release to manudfacturing within a few weeks.
So the odds are that we are going to see Windows 7 sooner rather than later.