The next Windows has just been released as a preview, both as desktop and as server.
Downloading from MSDN took some time. It looked like I was not the only one downloading ;-)
When I tried to install the Windows 8 desktop as a virtual computer i vmware, the initial boot failed with a "HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAILED".
A little browsing using my favorite web search engine, I found several indications that the problem is a new HAL (Hardware Abstraction Layer) in Windows 8. A HAL that vmware 7.n can not handle...
The next version of vmware (8.0) was released 2011-09-13, but the licensing is not open until the week of 2011-09-19.
Still it was no problem to acquire a trial license and install it (vmware workstation) on my desktop running Windows 7 Ultimate x64.
On the new vmware the Windows 8 installation went without any problems. :-)
The vmware tools also installed on the virtual Windows 8 without any issues.
One thing I learned the hard way is that installing the vmware tools locks the GUI on the virtual Windows 8.
I tried to install SQL Server "Denali", but it failed right in the beginning without any clues. No folders are created, and no entries are made in the registry.
The installation of SQL Server 2008 R2 (Developer Edition, x64) went as on Windows 7. Installing Service Pack 1 went as normal.
Also it looks like everything is running fine. :-)
The new Start menu in Windows 8 holds the SQL Server 2008 icons like this: