Windows users are eagerly expecting the first public preview of Windows 9 which will bring back not only the Start-button but also open the desktop for immersive apps to be run there like any other Windows-application. So far we have only seen screenshot-leaks and still expect the first unofficial iso-images to pop up. While these might not be the killer features you expect from a new system, Windows 9 could cause an update-revolution for another reason: Microsoft is rumored to make Windows 9 a free giveaway for nearly all existing Windows users.
Various sources report that a free Windows 9 still is not off the table. The discussion just started to heat up again on the My Digital Life Forum where it had made the rounds already in May.
Also Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet still considers the free Windows 9 an option which isn't off the table and says it might include upgraders of Vista or even XP. While we hear this rumor talk about free updates for Windows 7 since a while, the XP-option would definitely mean a shift of Microsoft's general OS strategy. There are basically no windows-systems running on versions older than XP, which means Microsoft would make Windows 9 a free system for all current legal users of the OS.