If you don't want to risk blowing up your laptop (like I did) and you're not interested in setting up and maintaining a virtual server, but you still want to test SQL Server 2008. Then, PASS (Professional Association of SQL Server Users), Dell & MaximumASP have a solution. Just go to SQL Server Beta. You can set up a private instance and it will persist between sessions.
I'm working through implementing SCOM, specifically the SQL Server Management Packs. I've been tweaking and tuning and for the most part I'm really impressed with how MS configured the defaults. Until today. Since I've hit all the really big and important monitors & rules (at least the ones that have caused problems) I'm starting to drill down a bit. I just hit the Duration monitor for SQL Agent Jobs. The run time for a warning state is 1 minute and an error state in 2 minutes. OK. So any backup on a database over about 2gb in size is going to go into a warning state? I don't think so. What the heck were these guys thinking of?
My fault, my fault, my most grevious fault... I installed the November CTP to my virtual machine without making a backup of the virtual first. Now I can't get the November CTP to uninstall and the February CTP won't install on top of it. ARRRGGGGH! Anyway, I'll be getting back to 2008 tomorrow, hopefully, after the admin guys get me a new virtual.