RC1 CPP Now Available to General PublicFirst and foremost, if you are not "computer saavy" or if your computer is "mission critical", I would advise you to wait until the final product release. Otherwise, you can find the necessary information at the Windows Vista "Customer Preview Program" page.
A quick update on CPP status:
Windows Vista RC1 is now publicly available. This means that 32- and 64-bit downloads for all three languages (English, German, and Japanese) are live. If you did not receive and email in the previous wave, you can now both download the ISO image and request a product key (PID).
Whether you are ready now or anticipating an upgrade after final release, find out if your Windows PC can run Windows Vista with the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor RC, which works with 32-bit versions of Windows XP and Windows Vista. Note, however, that it does not work with Windows 98, Windows 2000, or Windows XP Professional x64 Edition.
From there, go to Upgrading Planning for Windows Vista to find out if your system can be upgraded to Vista or if a clean install will be required.