Microsoft to deliver first IE8 release candidate Monday

From InfoWorld: Microsoft plans to deliver the first release candidate of the next version of Internet Explorer on Monday, according to sources familiar with the company's plans.

IE8 (Internet Explorer 8) has been in its second beta release since August, and a post on Microsoft's IE8 blog on Wednesday said the company was "about to release" IE8 RC1 (Release Candidate 1) for Windows XP and Vista. Sources familiar with the company's plans said the release will be Monday.

In Microsoft terminology, a release candidate means the software is feature complete and the code is basically stable, and a final release is imminent.

Microsoft's public relations team also has sent out e-mails to members of the press saying that Microsoft will have some news regarding IE8 on Monday but will only comment under embargo about that news.

Microsoft originally had hoped to release the final version of IE8 before the end of 2008, but as with many Microsoft product releases, the software's delivery was pushed back. Rather than set firm dates for software releases, Microsoft typically these days will say the final release of software is dependent upon user feedback from the beta process.

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