A little over a month ago, Microsoft released the first CTP of Windows Thin PC (WinTPC), an OS targeted at legacy systems with lower resources. Now, Microsoft has delivered the first Release Candidate (RC) of WinTPC.
WinTPC is built from Windows Embedded Standard 7 and is designed to provide a generalized version of the lightweight Embedded OS that is typically used in kiosks and various other embedded systems. Windows Thin PC continues the trend of Windows Fundamentals (WinFLP) which was also built from the Embedded edition of Windows XP. Like WinFLP, Thin PC is available to only Microsoft’s volume licensing customers. AnandTech recently reviewed WinTPC and praised its ability to maintain application compatibility while lowering installation time and resource usage.
The new RC build of WinTPC is available from Microsoft's Connect website. Microsoft has been quick to note the great success of the Technology Preview program with over 12,000 participants. With the ability to use write filters in the OS and easy management with System Center, WinTPC is able to naturally fit in to the corporate workspace and leverage existing hardware and resources.
Microsoft also announced that they plan to RTM WinTPC within this quarter (Q2 CY2011). As previously noted, WinTPC will only be available as a Software Assurance benefit and further information is available in the WinTPC FAQ. With such an enthusiastic response to the program, one would hope that Microsoft may consider releasing the RTM build of WinTPC to a broader base of customers.