(Via Tom Archer) The much anticipated December Community Technical Preview of Windows Vista has been released. It’s build 5270, available in x86 and x64 versions, and the downloads are listed here. They include:
WinFX Runtime Components (RTC) – WinFX redistributables (runtime binaries) for executing WinFX applications
Windows SDK – Includes the header files, libraries and help documentation for developing the next generation of Windows applications. Note that this release (and all future releases of the Windows SDK includes the WinFX SDK).
Visual Studio Code Name “Orcas” CTP WinFX Development Tools – provides developers with support for building WinFX applications using the final released version of Visual Studio 2005. This support includes XAML Intellisense support through schema extensions for the editor, project templates for the Windows Presentation Foundation and the Windows Communication Foundation, and WinFX SDK documentation integration. New to this CTP is a preview of the Visual Designer for Windows Presentation Foundation (code name “Cider”).
Windows Vista – substantial advance in Windows with significant innovations in the developer platform. Combining Windows Vista and the Windows SDK makes it easier than ever before to build applications that are more secure, reliable, and manageable.
There’s more by following the link, but note that all of the above except Windows Vista itself are publicly downloadable. Vista is only available to MSDN Universal subscribers and official beta testers. Robert McLaws reports that it may be a couple of days before it actually appears on MSDN. ActiveWin has some screenshots and a detailed list of new features.
Update: Nate Mook has a good overview of new features at BetaNews.