Do you want to get your grasping hands curled around a boxed copy of Windows 8 as soon as humanly possible? Even the most excited among us will have to wait until October 26th for the privilege, but Microsoft just announced that enthusiastic early adopters can pre-order their copies from major retailers starting today, ensuring that a packaged Windows 8 Pro DVD will have your name on it at launch.  

Amazon.com, Best Buy, Staples, Office Depot and Microsoft Stores are among the big-name retailers tapped to offer presales of the Pro version of the upcoming operating system for $69.99. The scads of new notebooks, Ultrabooks and tablets slated to ship with Windows 8 preinstalled on October 26th became available for preorder today as well.

Upgrading to Windows 8 is even cheaper and easier if you want to switch over a computer you already own. Starting on October 26th, Windows 7, XP and Vista owners will be able to download a $39.99 copy of Windows 8 Pro through Windows.com.  If you buy (or bought) a PC between June 2 of this year and January 31st of next year downloading a copy of Windows 8 Pro will only set you back $14.99, though you'll need to register your purchase with Microsoft first.

Don't dilly-dally if you're interested in making the switch; the discount offers are only good until January 31st, at which point the price transfers to full cost. What's that? Microsoft hasn't said, but sources claim Windows 8 Pro's full cost will leap from $69.99 to $199.99, while the upgrade cost will more than double, to $99.99.

Pricing details for the standard, non-Pro version of Windows 8 haven't been disclosed.

Via Windows Team Blog