Windows 9 is most likely the hottest project currently prepared by Microsoft at this point and even though the company says absolutely nothing about it, we still have quite a lot of details about the operating system that's expected to revamp Redmond's modern platform.
Now a new report published by The Verge and citing unnamed sources that preferred to remain anonymous for obvious reasons is revealing that Microsoft is planning to launch a Windows 9 preview version sometime this year, thus trying to give users the chance to try out the upcoming operating system before the public launch.
Nothing is confirmed so far, but according to previous reports on the same matter, the software giant is preparing two different beta versions of Windows 9 that would be shipped to developers before the April 2015 launch when the operating system is expected to see daylight.
The same source claims that Windows 9 will come with a Start menu, in an effort clearly supposed to help Microsoft better tackle the PC market and tweak the operating system in such a way that it would better address those still relying on a mouse and keyboard as the main input method.
At this point, it's not yet clear whether the preview versions of Windows 9 would be released to everyone or only to developers, but we're hearing that the company is trying to prevent future leaks with tightened security measures that would help identify the owner of a leaked copy of the operating system.
Every single build of Windows that's coming out of Redmond for testing purposes is digitally signed with a unique key, so Microsoft would be capable of finding the one who leaked it much easier than before.
Voices familiar with the matter also revealed that Windows 9 might be offered free of charge to those running fully up-to-date installations of Windows 7 and Windows 8.1, of course in an effort that would in the end be meant to move more users to newer versions of Windows.
Surprisingly, Microsoft is also trying to convince Windows 8 users to upgrade, which might be an indication that this particular operating system didn't perform well and the company is hoping to make it history as soon as possible.
Again, these details are still in the speculation stage, so just take them as rumors and wait for Microsoft to break the news on the Windows 9 project.