One million copies of the consumer preview of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system were downloaded in the first 24 hours of its availability.
Microsoft disclosed the download milestone in a BuildingWindows8 tweet Thursday.
Microsoft began offering the consumer preview version of the software on Wednesday following a press conference at the Mobile World Congress. Windows 8 is the next generation of Microsoft's flagship product that's widely expected to be generally available later this year.
In addition to perpetuating Microsoft's dominant position on desktop PCs, Windows 8, which also will run on ARM-based tablet computers, is the keystone of the company's efforts to become a player in the mobile computing arena.
Microsoft began offering a "developer preview" version of the operating system at its Build conference last September. But this week marks the first time a version of the software has been available to the general public.
Almost overlooked in the hoopla over the Windows 8 client software was the fact that Microsoft debuted a beta of the next release of Windows Server, code named "Windows Server 8" on Thursday. A preview version of that product for developers and hardware partners also was made available in September.
Microsoft is calling the server software its "cloud-optimised" operating system because of its ability to leverage Microsoft's new Hyper-V virtualisation technology to create a multi-tenant platform for cloud computing.
Also new are advancements in high-availability and disaster recovery capabilities, such as File Server Transparent Failover, and new tools for multi-machine management and automation including Windows PowerShell, Intellisense and improvements to Server Manager.