Download Windows 8.1 RTM, Visual Studio 2013 RC and Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM Today

Download Windows 8.1 RTM, Visual Studio 2013 RC and Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM Today

Starting today, we will extend availability of our current Windows 8.1, Windows 8.1 Pro and Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM builds to the developer and IT professional communities via MSDN and TechNet subscriptions. The Windows 8.1 RTM Enterprise edition will be available through MSDN and TechNet for businesses later this month. Additionally, today we’re making available the Visual Studio 2013 Release Candidate which you can download here.

We heard from you that our decision to not initially release Windows 8.1 or Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM bits was a big challenge for our developer partners as they’re readying new Windows 8.1 apps and for IT professionals who are preparing for Windows 8.1 deployments. We’ve listened, we value your partnership, and we are adjusting based on your feedback. As we refine our delivery schedules for a more rapid release cadence, we are working on the best way to support early releases to the various audiences within our ecosystem.

In providing the best developer tools to our customers, Visual Studio 2013 RC enables development teams to build, deliver and manage compelling apps that take advantage of today’s devices and services. With the release of Visual Studio 2013 RC, we’ve made available additional features and functionality to enhance developer and development team productivity and agility. For more information of what’s new in Visual Studio 2013 see today’s blog post from S. Somasegar.

With these updated platform and tools bits, developers will be able to build and test their Windows 8.1 apps. The RTM versions of tools, services, and platform are required for store submissions which will open up for new Windows 8.1 apps beginning at general availability on October 18.

Given the accelerated rate of technological advancement we continue to see in the industry and here at Microsoft, it’s an exciting time to be an app builder. We recognize the critical role developers play—the breadth of our apps ecosystem is a key pillar of the Windows experience. It’s an essential end-to-end relationship – we deliver the tools, services and platform to give developers the flexibility and opportunity to innovate and build experiences for Windows that make all our lives more productive and fun. 

We also recognize that our commercial customers need time to perform application compatibility and other testing and validation to best plan for their Windows 8.1 deployments following general availability on October 18.

The primary purpose of Windows 8.1 RTM and Visual Studio 2013 RC availability is for testing as our engineering teams continue to refine and update the product and tools in preparation for Windows 8.1 general availability on October 18 and the release of Visual Studio 2013 RTW.  Third party apps may require final refinement to onboard into the Windows Store at the October 18 GA milestone.  However, we’re confident this pre-release will enable developers to ready their Windows 8.1 apps for customers while validating their existing apps function as expected on Windows 8.1

Similarly, we continue to validate the Windows Server 2012 R2 software with our partners and expect to make further updates to the build for general availability on October 18 as well. 

We are pleased to provide non-production support for Windows Store app development and testing for Windows 8.1, via forums and assisted support channels.  For links to those resources, along with existing Windows 8 support options, please visit the Dev Center support options page. We will also provide assisted support for Windows 8.1 RTM and Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM through standard commercial support channels.

We are excited about the innovation we are delivering in such a short amount of time, and are pleased to be able to share these pre-releases with the communities.  Thanks for your continued support and feedback, you can reach out to me anytime, either using the comments here or on twitter @StevenGuggs.

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  • Please add 4 and 5 and type the answer here:
  • Post
  • Visual Studio _2013_ only supports XAML _2006_, not XAML2009.

    This joke is no longer funny. Yawn....

  • @KL - Thanks for the suggestion, but removing the cversion.ini file did not appear to work. Still get the same two options:

    - Keep personal files only

    - Nothing

    At this point it looks like you will lose your your apps and need to reinstall everything. I also found this note on that same screen in setup:

    Note: If you’re upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1, you won’t see “apps” as an option of things to keep, and you’ll need to reinstall your apps using the original installation media.

    That really worries me since i was looking to upgrade a Windows 7 machine directly to 8.1. Am I missing something here?

  • I have a question about Surface RT. I know that there is no Win RT 8.1 RTM right now, and VS 2013 RC doesn't support Win 8.1 Preview. I would like to know if I upgrade my PC from Win 8.1 Preview to RTM, and VS2013 to RC, can I still run or debug my program (under 8.1's framework) on Surface RT with Win 8.1 Preview? If not, is there any solution before Win 8.1 RTW release?

  • Am installing 8.1 on a fresh machine. I have 4 x different 8.0 Pro keys, and the 8.1 'Enter the product key to activate Windows' screen will NOT accept any of the 8.0 license keys. They are all valid, and legitimate 8.0 keys.

    Means that I am unable to continue the setup process, and install 8.1

    Any ideas?

  • @DrPhilGood:

    You'll need a valid 8.1 key in order to install 8.1. A Windows 8 key won't work, just like a Windows 7 key wouldn't work to install 8.

    If you're an MSDN subscriber, you can grab an 8.1 key off of your My Product Keys page. If you're not a subscriber, and you're working with a leaked build, why are you here asking for help again?

  • But W8.1 is only an update to 8.0 - why would it need a new key?

  • I still cannot see Windows 8.1 RTM in our "Microsoft Action Pack Development and Design" list of available software. When can we expect the availability there? Thanks.

  • Is there any way now orin the future to do an upgrade from 8.0 to 8,1 without losing all our installed programs (I don't mean apps) - I really can't face installing Office, VS, SQL etc etc again just for this upgrade.


  • To assist with some questions above:

    1. To "unlock" upgrade and keep your files/apps/settings, you need to follow @KL instructions. I tested the utility and it works ( Evidently, first uncheck "read-only" for the ISO Win8.1 file.

    2. You need a valid 8.1 product key, the old Win8 key does not work. Get one from TechNet (My Product Keys).

    I have one question:

    I try to upgrade my Win8 which is on VHD. I get an error "You can't install Windows on a virtual drive".

    I then tried booting from a USB stick with Win8.1, but upgrade option is not possible unless I run installer from within the existing Win8. Which gets me back to my previous problem.

    Any hint ?

  • Definitely a step in the right direction, just keep on walking the “Software and Solutions” way

    M a r c

    A TechNet subscriber maintaining 8 VMs in his lab that he doesn’t want to reinstall every 180 days.

  • Any news on when this is coming to Volume Licencing / VLSC?


  • Hi Steve,

    Do you know where the KMS Client Setup Keys for the Server 2012 R2 RTM are located?

    This page does not list them and the Preview keys don't work.

  • @tassos  and @KL

    Many thanks - tried that but still only offered to allow me to keep my files

    Any other ideas ?


  • MSDN subscribers can download it from:

    TechNet subscribers can download it from:

  • Does anyone know when Server 2012 R2 RTM will be available on the MS VLSC with SA?  Thanks.

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