Reversing course on a previous decision, Microsoft has opted to release the final code for Windows 8.1 and the Visual Studio 2013 release candidate to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. "We heard from you that our decision to not initially release Windows 8.1 or Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM bits was a big challenge for our developer partners as they're readying new Windows 8.1 apps and for IT professionals who are preparing for Windows 8.1 deployments," blogged Microsoft's Steven Guggenheimer. "We've listened, we value your partnership, and we are adjusting based on your feedback. As we refine our delivery schedules for a more rapid release cadence, we are working on the best way to support early releases to the various audiences within our ecosystem."
Microsoft released Windows 8.1 to manufacturing last month, and the new version of the operating system will reach the general availability stage on October 18. Visual Studio 2013 will be released to manufacturing on the same day.