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  (Source: Microsoft)

  (Source: Microsoft)
Microsoft spills the beans on Vista SP1

After months of leaks and speculation, Microsoft is finally ready to talk about Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1). Nick White, a product manager for Microsoft, posted today on the Windows Vista Team Blog that Vista SP1 will be released during the first quarter of 2008.

"We improve the Windows Vista experience by continuing to work closely with software partners to ensure application compatibility," said White. "We likewise align efforts with partners on the hardware side of the business to broaden the range of devices that work with Windows Vista and to constantly improve device driver quality."

"We didn’t design SP1 as a vehicle for releasing new features; however, some existing components do gain enhanced functionality in SP1," White added.

A new beta release of Vista SP1 is scheduled to be made available to a select group of testers during the first half of September. This is in addition to an even smaller pool of testers who have been testing a private beta of Vista SP1.

In keeping with its full disclosure on Vista SP1, Microsoft has posted a white paper on the SP1 beta. The white paper details the improvement that Microsoft has made in application compatibility and driver support as well as improvements to security and reliability.

The white paper also notes that there will be three ways of delivering Vista SP1:  Express, Stand-alone and Slipstream. The Express install will require a 50MB download from the Internet. System-specific updates will then be downloaded from Microsoft’s servers.

The Stand-alone package will be roughly 1GB in size for x86 systems. Customers, however, will be able to deploy SP1 to any Vista installation with the Stand-alone package and it will be compatible with the System Center Configuration Manager 2007 software.

Finally, Slipstream versions of Windows Vista with SP1 included will be made available to Volume Licensing Customers (and later in retail packaging). Microsoft does note, however, that "customers cannot apply SP1 to offline Windows Vista images." This could mean that customers will not able to make their own personal Slipstream copy of Windows Vista SP1 from an existing Windows Vista disc.

Installation of Windows Vista SP1 regardless of which method chosen will require a minimum of 7GB free disk space on x86 machines and 12GB free disk space on x64 machines. Microsoft does state that "most of this space will be reclaimed after installation."

As previously stated, Microsoft is targeting a Q1 2008 release time frame. That could change depending on a variety of factors according to Microsoft. "We’re first and foremost focused on delivering a high-quality release, so we'll determine the exact release date of SP1 after we have reached that quality bar," remarked White.

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RE: Vista has gone Gold
By BitJunkie on 8/29/2007 2:28:29 PM , Rating: 3
I have 3 Installations of Vista under my belt:

1) Upgraded a HP laptop from XP Home to Vista Ultimate 32 Bit.
2) Installed Vista Ultimate 64 bit on a new build cutting edge C2D system
3) Installed Vista Home Premium 32 bit on a knackered old Athlon X2 system.

I can honestly say I haven't had a major problem with any of those installs. The biggest problem I've had has been with Creative's drivers for 64 bit (which are now pretty much okay). Oh, and nVidia's lack of decent SLI support early on...which now is kind of functional if not optimised completely.

As for Vista, I love it. Not a fanboi - just call it how I see it. It's easy to use and I love the new UI in Office 2007 - as a power user of Word and Excel the streamlining of the new ribbons is a great help and a joy to use. The account control is better than Linux based systems where you have to constantly "su" to elevate.

It's just the funky thing to do - hating on Microsoft, but pretty soon people are going to realise what a good effort they actually made. My company is upgrading to Vista en masse in the next 6 months, lots of excited people.

"We don't know how to make a $500 computer that's not a piece of junk." -- Apple CEO Steve Jobs

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