Windows 8 hasn't released yet but that hasn't stopped Microsoft from allowing students, staff, and faculty to download Windows 8 Professional for free. The final version of Windows 8 will ship on October 26th, but it doesn't look like Microsoft is going to implement any major changes to the operating system before then.
Microsoft released a full 90 day evaluation copy of Windows 8 Enterprise, which is technically the release to manufacturer (RTM), also known as the final version that's being shipped out. Windows 8 is finished and now students, staff, and faculty members have an exclusive opportunity to download Windows 8 Professional completely free from Microsoft's Dreamspark website, which is a website developed to provide Microsoft software to students and educators for no charge.
If your university is part of the Dreamspark Premium program, here's how you can download Windows 8 Pro for free.
The first thing you want to do is head over to the Dreamspark website. From there, you can read up about how Dreamspark works. On the right, you will see a link to create an account. If you already have an account, you can simply sign in.
To create your account, enter your university email address and search for your school. You are required to have a .edu address in order to proceed. There are also options to enter an Activaction Code or ISIC card number.
Once you've registered and logged in, click on this link, which takes you to the Dreamspark webstore where you can download Windows 8 Professional for free. All you have to do is start the download and wait!
Windows 8 Professional is quite a massive download so it could take a while for it to download. Unfortunately there's no way to request a physical disc to be sent in mail, for those with slow connections.
Be sure to check out our handy Windows 8 guides to get familiar with the new operating system!