As you may have heard by now, Windows Vista Release Candidate 1 (RC1) is complete! See the announcement from Platforms and Services Co-President Jim Allchin. If you’ve been waiting for a Release Candidate to start your testing, the time is now.

Since we were only able to give out 75 DVDs of build 5472 in our giveaway last month, I wanted to tell everyone how you can get RC1 (build 5600):

  • RC1 has been released to the “connect” site for TAP customers and TechBeta testers.
  • This week, customers who signed up for the Beta 2 Consumer Preview Program (CPP) will receive details on how they can download RC1, and RC1 will be available for MSDN and TechNet subscribers to download.
  • Next week, we will make RC1 available to all customers, either through download or on DVD.

Stay tuned to for updates on availability.

We’ve made a lot of improvements since Beta 2. We’ve made some UI adjustments, added more device drivers, and enhanced performance. On the security front, we’ve made a lot of improvements in the User Account Control (UAC) area in particular. Read about the improvements we’ve made to UAC in RC1. We’ll also post more details about security-related changes in RC1 here in the next month.

- Alex Heaton