The official stance from Microsoft has always been that Windows 7 would be released three years after Vista, which would put its release date somewhere in January 2010. However, various rumours already indicated a release ahead of that schedule, and if the beta and RC are anything to go by, they could release it today and get away with it. Microsoft seems to have realised this, as it has now said it will release Windows 7 in time for the 2009 holiday season.
It was Bill Veghte, senior vice president of the Windows Business at Microsoft, who was the one to break the news during Microsoft TechEd North America 2009. Both Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be released onto the world in time for the 2009 holiday season, which puts its release in December at the latest. Microsoft did not mention a specific date of release.
Apart from moving the release date forward about a month, this also means that Windows Server 2008 R2 will arrive alongside Windows 7, while the company previously stated that Server 2008 R2 would arrive some time after Windows 7.