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Microsoft: Vista Downloads Maxing Out Its Servers

Order the DVD instead, Microsoft says, as downloads of Windows Vista Beta 2 cause the company's servers to experience extremely high demand.
Microsoft was still warning users Monday to order a DVD copy of Windows Vista 2 rather than download the massive multi-gigabyte files, saying that it couldn't pump out bits any faster without impacting the Internet as a whole. On Friday, the Redmond, Wash. developer posted a message on the Visa 2 Beta download and order page that said company servers were experiencing extremely high demand.

"The wait time to start the download is very long and many customers may be unable to access the download site. To guarantee participation in the Customer Preview Program (to receive both Beta 2 and RC1) we recommend you use the DVD kit order option," the message read.

As of Monday morning, the statement remained on the site, even though TechWeb was able to access the servers and begin multiple downloads.

According to Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional) Steven Bink of Amsterdam, Microsoft said last week that it was serving up downloads as fast as its servers could. It also claimed that the Vista download was the biggest ever.

An unnamed Microsoft representative told an online gathering of prominent Microsoft-oriented Web sites -- Bink runs Bink.nu -- Friday that "we are literally saying that if we increased our bandwidth any further there's a possibility of taking down the Internet - people might have problems with World Cup viewing, etc."

Microsoft also reportedly considered using BitTorrent to distribute Beta 2, but ultimately rejected the idea.

Windows Vista Beta 2 -- officially dubbed the Consumer Preview Program (CPP) -- was posted for download last Wednesday.

Microsoft was not immediately available for comment Monday on the status of its servers.

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