Microsoft this afternoon announced to its beta testing community that Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) will soon be available for testing with a public release date of Q1 2008. Windows XP SP3 will also be out for testing and publicly available in the first half 2008.
Microsoft revealed that a small group of testers have had the Vista SP1 in their hands for a couple of weeks now and that Microsoft TechNet and MSDN subscribers will be able to download SP1 in the coming weeks. The beta will be 50MB, but the public standalone final version will be 1GB to support all Windows Vista platforms and languages.
So what exactly will SP1 cover? Microsoft has an entire white paper you can read if you'd like the dirty details, but here's a quick rundown from that paper.
Security improvements that will be in Windows Vista SP1 include:
Windows Vista SP1 will include improvements that target some of the most common causes of crashes and hangs, giving users a more consistent experience. Many of these improvements will specifically address issues identified from the Windows Error Reporting tool. The following list describes some of the reliability improvements that Windows Vista SP1 will include:
The following list describes some of the performance improvements that Windows Vista SP1 will include:
According to Microsoft Installing the Vista SP1 service pack will require a large amount of free disk space (7 GB for x86 and 12 GB for x64). However, most of this space will be reclaimed after installation.
Windows XP SP3
SP3 will essentially be just a roll-up of all the security updates and hotfixes that have occurred since SP2 was released. There will be no new features in SP3 other than adding Network Access Protection to XP -- a feature that exists in Windows Vista already. Release of Windows XP SP3 is scheduled for sometime in the first half of 2008.
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