Officials of Microsoft said late last week they already have more than enough beta testers for Windows 7, but are still extending the cut-off date for downloads of the beta release.

Windows Communications Manager on the Windows Client Communications Team Brandon LeBlanc said in a statement that, Because enthusiasm continues to be so high for the Windows 7 Beta and we don't want anyone to miss out we will keep the Beta downloads open through February 10th. Customers who have started but not completed the download process will be able to do so through February 12th.

If a user started the download before February 10, they will have until February 12 to complete the download. Also, product keys will continue to be distributed beyond February 12 for not-yet-activated downloads.

The expiration date on the Windows 7 beta is August 1, 2009. A release candidate is expected to go to go out to select testers before that date.

By third quarter of 2009, many company watchers, partners and customer are expecting Microsoft to release to manufacturing the final Windows 7 build.