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Will Microsoft's new service pack reinvigorate Vista sales on the eve of Windows 7?

Microsoft is preparing new service packs for Windows Vista and its server counterpart, Windows Server 2008.  The pair of service packs, according to sources, will likely land before the release of Windows 7 which is set to debut in late 2009 or early 2010.  Microsoft confirmed that the project was in the works, with a Vista spokesman saying, "Microsoft is working on a second Windows Vista service pack (Windows Vista SP2) and will share more details in the coming months."

Windows Vista already saw the release of its first service pack in May of this year.  The first release was marred by compatibility difficulties, which forced Microsoft to take it offline for a short time.  Amid slower than-hoped-for adoption growth, Microsoft launched a reinvigorated push to convince people to adopt Windows Vista, highlighted by its "I'm a PC" commercials.

Reports indicate that Microsoft is hard at work preparing the second generation service packs, to help further this new campaign.  It has reportedly delivered a beta of the Vista pack to select hardware and software partners.  This is similar to its current distribution method for early builds of Windows 7.  Microsoft also posted a placeholder article for Vista SP2 on its Knowledge Base site.

Details on the new packs are scarce, but sources with Microsoft say that the biggest deliverable for the Server version will be the integration of Hyper-V bits with it.  Sources also say the reason Microsoft is pushing to release the pack before Windows 7 is to limit confusion about whether to upgrade to Windows 7 or choose the newly more functional Vista.

The service pack for Windows Server 2008 will also reportedly be called SP2, despite it being the first service pack for the OS.  This because Windows Server 2008 was built on Vista with the SP1 service pack included.  Still, the first real service pack for the server OS will be an essential boost as many corporate partners are hesitant to buy an OS without service packs.

Microsoft is remaining tight-lipped about the server SP2 as well, except to acknowledge that its coming soon.  A Microsoft spokesperson stated, "[The] comment [on Vista] serves for Windows Server as well; Microsoft is not commenting further on the timing/release plans for the WS08 SP2 at this time, but will share more details in the coming months."

The Beta 1 releases for the two SP2s are expected within the next couple months.  This will put some pressure on Microsoft's developer team to quickly complete the service pack, as the Windows 7 Beta 1 is slated for mid-December release.

It is rumored that Microsoft may be including some aspects of Windows 7's functionality into Vista via the new service packs.

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Learning from experience
By crystal clear on 10/18/2008 11:33:28 AM , Rating: 1
M.S. has learnt from its mistakes & experience with VISTA.

M.S. realized that its 2 products,namely 2 O.S. - WinXP & VISTA were competing with each other rather than competing with other competiting O.S. namely Linux & O.S.x (Apple).

M.S. also realized that releasing Vista purely due to marketing consideration,namely time to market has backfired, landing themselves in a crisis situation.

Instead of the O.S.(VISTA) selling itself, M.S.was pushing hard with a marketing campaign to sell the O.S. via those Tier 1 OEMs.

Vista was marketed by OEMs as an option rather than a serious product that was to replace the WinXP as a major upgrade.

Blame the OEMs for exerting unnecessary/exessive pressure on M.S. to release VISTA earlier than it should have,thereby depriving M.S. the crucial time to carry out further testing to remove those glitches/bugs etc & further refinement of Vista.

Blame M.S. for setting itself a deadline date/s which it could not meet/deliver Vista for release to OEMs & the rest.

Blame those hardware/software manufacturers who failed to deliver their drivers in time of the release,& or drivers without any issues. To name a few H.P.,Nvidia etc to enable the smooth transition from WinXP to Vista.

Blame the OEMs for using Vista & Vista marketing funds to dump recklessly on the buyers their hardware,with explicit purpose to boost their revenues/sales/marketshare & profits.

Blame the OEMs for promoting WinXP openly instead of Vista for the same motive namely profits & revenues.
They forced M.S. even to give you the down grade option all for their own profits & revenues.

Enough of the blame game...M.S. cannot undo whats done....

Now the course of action is to work hard & deliver the SP2 for Vista without any issues,to make Vista more efficient/reliable/easy to use.

The focus should be on user experience.

The message M.S. has to deliver is very simple-

1) Vista is here to stay on for a long time & its time to move on from XP with no further delay.

2) Vista should NOT & must NOT be skipped to buy/use the next O.S. namely Windows 7.

3) Dont compare the WinXP with the Vista-accept Vista as it is & await further improvemnts/refinements after the SP 1 through updates & the SP 2 .

M.S. could find itself a very wierd situation & even a very serious crisis,when it finds out that people start comparing the Windows 7 to the WinXP,when in fact they should be comparing the Vista to Windows 7.

There are NO guarrantees that Win 7 will be what people are expecting it to be - expectation are very high,built on speculations/ rumours/ wishful thinking/ guess work of many (claiming inside information/sources etc) posted on blogs & websites.

M.S. should do all it can to make people realize its not worth waiting for Win 7 by staying on with WinXP & skipping Vista.

Rather Win 7 is the next upgrade after Vista ,just as Vista was & should have been the next upgrade after Win XP.

On another note M.S. committed a serious blunder by NOT going the Intel route/roadmaps for the ATOM & the NETBOOKS & NET TOPS.

The need for M.S. to come up with a slim & effecient O.S. that fits the requirements for the ATOM.

Yes the WinXP is there as a stop gap measure thereby extending its life (E.O.L.), but observing the runaway success of the ATOM, a slim/efficient Vista version would ride on the high wave of success of the ATOM.

To summarize it-

Keep those Vista updates flowing in & the SP2 to be followed after the necessary testing.

As for the Win 7 M.S. should not repeat those blunders mentioned in this comment.

RE: Learning from experience
By crystal clear on 10/18/2008 1:32:25 PM , Rating: 2
"Windows Vista is good, Windows 7 is Windows Vista with clean-up in user interface [and] improvements in performance," Ballmer said

Ballmer: Windows 7 is Vista, just 'a lot better'

RE: Learning from experience
By Cypherdude1 on 10/18/2008 3:04:36 PM , Rating: 2
Yes! Correct! Windows 7 is really Vista SE in disguise!

B ^D

RE: Learning from experience
By crystal clear on 10/20/2008 1:15:49 PM , Rating: 2
Microsoft sends Vista SP2 invites - beta release in 4 weeks

"Folks that want porn can buy an Android phone." -- Steve Jobs

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