About an hour ago, Tom Warren at the Verge broke the news that Windows 10 has hit RTM (release to manufacturing). Quoting "sources familiar with Microsoft's plans," he says:
Microsoft has selected build 10240 as the final RTM copy, allowing PC makers to start loading the software onto new machines ready for release. We understand that Microsoft is signing off on the build internally today, and may announce the RTM publicly by the end of the week or choose to ignore the milestone and focus on the launch.
Shortly afterward, Brad Sams at Neowin confirmed the story.
Unfortunately, neither source has word on when the bits will become available for Windows Insiders. Microsoft has promised to release the "first final" version to Windows Insiders on July 29, but there are at least three possibilities:
- Microsoft may decide to release build 10240 early, possibly stress-testing its upgrade mechanism in the process. That, of course, is what most testers would like to see. Microsoft discontinued distribution of beta builds of Windows 10 last week, likely in anticipation of a massive upgrade test.
- Microsoft may decide to release some other build to stress test the upgrade process. Likely candidates include build 10176, which was rumored to be an RTM candidate. Presumably, that stress test will be followed by a release of 10240, on or before July 29.
- Or Microsoft may decide to sit tight and wait for July 29. That, to me, seems the least likely of the options. Microsoft's building a lot of buzz, and a late release would draw jeers from the peanut gallery.
That's from official sources. It remains to be seen how quickly and effectively the Win10 Tech Preview sieve will leak. Rumor has it that each RTM copy going out to hardware manufacturers could be branded. If true, we may not see any leaks at all.
Hang on. We've seen the white smoke. Expect some sort of official announcement shortly.