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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: Good luck with that one M$
By Master Kenobi on 8/29/2007 2:43:40 PM , Rating: 3
What you are trying to do with it is fine. It will still work.

"Slip Stream" was basically you would install the SP1 files onto the original installation DVD for Windows, so that when it installed fresh off the CD it would be at SP1 or SP2 already with no need for post-installation patching. It was doable with XP and handy, but its not that big of a deal to have the service packs on disk in their own folder for a post-installation patch.

RE: Good luck with that one M$
By ATC on 8/29/2007 2:52:53 PM , Rating: 2
I see. I'm glad it will be that way.

Slipstream would be nice but not a big deal. Having SP1 saved on disc for offline installation is a big deal for me though.

RE: Good luck with that one M$
By 1078feba on 8/29/2007 5:23:04 PM , Rating: 2
Don't want to appear dense, but if you don't ask, you never find out:

IIUYC, one cannot use an app like vLite to slipstream SP1 into a single home-made Vista install disc using your purchased copy of Vista as your starting point, correct? One can, however, download SP1 and burn it to a separate disc, then just run it after doing a clean install using the purchased Vista disc?

If this is correct, then I have a bit of an issue: I purchased a Dell back when I both didn't know anything about computers other than they fascinated me and XP had just come out (approx 5-6 years ago). It had XP Home preinstalled. SP1 came out, downloaded and installed it. SP 2 came out, downloaded and installed it, both via WinUpdate. Tried to do a clean reinstall one day only to have it tell me that I was trying to install an OS that was a previous "version" of the one I was running. Never found a way around it, comp was out-dated, built my own and bought/installed Xp Pro w/SP 2.

Is/was there a work around, or can we all with purchased Vista discs w/out any SPs look forward to this happening again?

Thanks for any light you all can shine my way...

RE: Good luck with that one M$
By DesertCat on 8/29/2007 5:33:51 PM , Rating: 2
You just needed to take another step to truly wipe out the hard drive. The most typical approach is to use Fdisk on a 3.5" floppy to wipe out any secondary partitions, then the primary partition. After that, a person can run the WinXP install CD, it will detect a totally unformatted hard drive and give you the option to partition & format it. After that the install proceeds normally.

RE: Good luck with that one M$
By TomZ on 8/29/2007 5:47:07 PM , Rating: 2
To add to that, you can easily delete partitions from within Vista setup without having to go through these extra steps.

RE: Good luck with that one M$
By DesertCat on 8/29/2007 7:27:10 PM , Rating: 2
Oooh, that's good to know about nuking partitions in the Vista install. With many machines not being shipped with a floppy drive these days, options like that are needed. A person could have a bootable USB flash drive with fdisk as well, but being able to do it inside the install is by far the most straightforward approach.

RE: Good luck with that one M$
By leexgx on 8/29/2007 10:08:20 PM , Rating: 2
whats an 3.5 floppy :)

i guess you stuck in the old days of Ms-dos you do know all NT based windows (NT4 and newer) has an option to remove partitions and format as well

sounds like you do not know how to set you pc to boot from cd-rom with out haveing to delete the partition

RE: Good luck with that one M$
By DesertCat on 8/29/2007 11:07:23 PM , Rating: 2
No that's not it. I know how to change the boot order in the BIOS just fine.

It's just that I learned how to nuke partitions back in the Win95/98 days and using a boot disk was the way it was done. It still works fine and, as a result, I never bothered to find other methods for deleting partitions. Seeing as how I only do it once in a blue moon it hasn't been worth my time to see if there was another way of doing it. Maybe it will horrify some that I still do BIOS updates from floppies as well?

The real point of all of this, though, is to explain that the fellow needed to delete partitions, not just reformat his hard drive. It really doesn't matter if it's done from a floppy or a CD. The covenience of doing it from the CD, however, is nice.

"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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