An interesting ComputerWorld article discusses how Microsoft will essentially allow users to use Windows 7 RC for 13 months from release so that early adopters can thoroughly test the software.  For those familiar with the Vista launch, 13 months is a significant extension which expired on June 1, 2007.

By visiting the Customer Preview Program site on TechNet, people will be able to get as many keys as they’d like.  Organizations can begin large-scale pilots.  I already know a few organizations who are comfortable deploying RC into production.  Other than mission critical scenarios, I see no reason no to take this offer and enjoy the bliss that is Windows 7!

The preview program is completely public and has no major restrictions other than signing in to download the image and key.