A new Windows 7 build that may be the first release candidate has leaked to the internet, according to several file-sharing sites.
Searches on Mininova.org, for example, found multiple copies of Windows 7 Build 7057 that were added to BitTorrent late last week. Pirated versions of both 32- and 64-bit editions are available.
The appearance of Windows 7 Build 7057 follows the leak of Build 7048 by just a week. This newest edition is the third to hit BitTorrent since Microsoft stopped offering the public beta of Windows 7.
Traffic on Build 7057 has been lively. As of midday on Friday, Mininova reported that one 32-bit BitTorrent of the operating system had been downloaded more than 37,000 times.
Screenshots of the leaked copy posted elsewhere on the web, including My Digital Life, show that the end-user licensing agreement (EULA) labels it 'Microsoft Windows 7 Operating System Release Candidate 1'.
The site, however, questioned whether Build 7057 was actually a release candidate. "A more likely scenario is that build 7048 is pre-RC or RC preview build which includes the RC1 EULA," said My Digital Life.
Neowin.net, on the other hand, posted shots of Build 7057 that indicated it would expire March 2, 2010, not the mid-summer 2009 expiration date built into the beta.
Windows 7 leaks have been a problem for Microsoft since previews were first handed out in October 2008 at Microsoft's Professional Developers Conference. Since then, other versions have appeared on BitTorrent, including a pirated copy of what was later released January 10 as the beta.