Leaked version of Windows 8 reportedly hits Web

Microsoft may have sprung a leak. Meanwhile, the Windows 8 'Metro' moniker will be tossed out the window. 

The Windows 8 OS is shown on a Microsoft Surface tablet. Both Windows 8 and Surface have not had the success Microsoft hoped for, but a new OS release in April could change all that.

Earlier this week, Microsoft officially sent the (mostly) final Windows 8 code to hardware manufacturers, bringing the much-ballyhooed OS one step closer to the Oct. 26 launch. But according to one tech site, complete Windows 8 software may have already leaked onto the Web. Winbeta is reporting that a version of Windows 8 Enterprise has hit torrent sites – although Winbeta said more testing was required to determine whether the file was real or a fake. 

Meanwhile, The Verge has also published information on a leaked copy of Windows 8 Enterprise, an OS intended for business users. Although IT professionals "won't officially receive access to the final Windows 8 bits until August 15th," writes Tom Warren of the Verge, "an Enterprise version of Windows 8 is available widely across various file sharing sites." Microsoft did not return Warren's request for comment. 

Windows 8 will ship in a range of editions, Microsoft has promised. Windows RT, for instance, is designed for tablet and smartphone users, while Windows 8 Pro is intended for hardcore users. Underneath the "daunting new interface are a wealth of smart decisions that go a long way towards dragging the behemoth that is Windows into the future," the team at PC Advisor wrote recently in a hands-on test of the Windows 8 consumer preview.  

In related news, Microsoft may be ditching the moniker "Metro," which it had been using to describe the tiled interface on Windows 8.

At least one report suggests that the switch-up has something to do with copyright infringement, but Microsoft says that Metro was always simply a code name. "We have used Metro style as a code name during the product development cycle across many of our product lines," a Microsoft rep told ZDNet. "As we get closer to launch and transition from industry dialog to a broad consumer dialog we will use our commercial names."

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