Microsoft backpedals on release delay, says it will release SP1 this month to select developers

Despite announcing that SP1 for Windows Vista was completed and released to manufacturing, Microsoft angered many IT professionals when it said that it would not be releasing the product until March.  Microsoft said that it would instead only be releasing the SP1 RTM to testers.  As the service pack fixes a number of key performance, security, and compatibility issues, many developers were eager to get their hands on it, and became disgruntled with the delay.

Now Microsoft is looking to soothe the discontent by announcing that late this month it will be releasing SP1, ahead of schedule, to MSDN and TechNet Plus subscribers.  As many developers are MSDN subscribers, this will likely quell much of the ill will towards Microsoft.

Better yet, Microsoft announced that English-language volume-licensing customers will be receiving an even faster deployment, and will be receiving the SP1 release by the end of the week.  Some foreign language developers may be disappointed, however that Microsoft gave no indication of when the foreign language versions would be released, or if their release would be bumped up at all.

The first customers to received the SP1 RTM were the testers who participated in the SP1 Beta.  These testers received the final bits of SP1 on Friday.

Windows SP1 introduces support for a number of key hardware and software standards, including the exFAT file system, 802.11n wireless networking, IPv6 over VPN connections, and the Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol.  For gaming fans Direct X 10 is updated to Direct X 10.1, which includes minor iterative improvements in rendering and a handful of new rendering tools.

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