The October 22 launch date is good news if you've been using the Beta version, which will start acting like a royal pain in the backside come Juyl 1, when it begin rebooting every two hours.
While those not willing to fork out for the full version (pricing yet to be announced) will be able to keep using the Windows 7 Release Candidate for another year until June 1 2010, if you're keen to make the jump to the retail version, then October 22 is the date to mark on your calendar.
So what if you're buying a laptop or desktop in the meantime? Dell and other vendors have been hinting to us for a while now that Microsoft may partner with retailers to offer some type of upgrade deal, so you don't have to fork out for the full cost again, just after you've paid for a shiny new Vista box.
The good news is that Microsoft has confirmed there will be an "Upgrade Option" program, though we're yet to see any prices, or what date it kicks in. This is what Microsoft's Brendon Le Blanc said on the Windows 7 Team Blog:
"Some people may not be able to wait for Windows 7 to arrive before having to order a new PC (like parents who are sending their sons or daughters off to school who need of a PC to take with them). Fortunately, there is no need to wait. Soon, customers will be able to take advantage of the Windows 7 Upgrade Option Program. This program enables participating retailers and OEMs to offer a special deal to upgrade to Windows 7 for customers purchasing a qualifying PC. I'll be doing another blog post about this program with a date and more details when we get closer to availability."
You can also download the free Windows 7 Release Candidate here.
You can read more in our feature about the 30 Best Features of Windows 7.