Microsoft: Vista service pack coming in '08

Now is the time and the time is now: let's talk about Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1). Much has been made of what will or will not be included in SP1 and when it will be released (some accurate, some otherwise). I'm here to set the story straight: we're in the process of developing and deploying a Beta version of SP1. This post will describe for you what to expect from that effort and how you can be involved in the process.

First, a note on service packs. As you are aware, service packs are part of our traditional software lifecycle; they're something we do for most major products as a commitment to continuous improvement. But, the servicing situation has changed with the advent of Windows Vista, as we no longer rely solely on service packs as the main vehicle used to deploy system fixes and improvements. The Windows Update online service is one new way to deliver many OS improvements. For example, yesterday in advance of SP1 we released via Windows Update two separate improvements to Windows Vista's reliability and performance. We did this prior to SP1 in lieu of requiring customers to wait for these fixes to be rolled into a single service pack. Beyond this, we improve the Windows Vista experience by continuing to work closely with software partners to ensure application compatibility. 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.


What is SP1? What is it not?
In addition to updates we've previously released, SP1 will contain changes focused on addressing specific reliability and performance issues we've identified via customer feedback, supporting new types of hardware, and adding support for several emerging standards. SP1 also makes additional improvements to the IT administration experience. We didn't design SP1 as a vehicle for releasing new features; however, some existing components do gain enhanced functionality in SP1.
More information on what's included in SP1 can be found in the detailed white paper.

When can I get my hands on the Beta of SP1?
A Beta release of Windows Vista SP1 is slated for availability in the next few weeks. A small group of testers has been putting a preview of the SP1 Beta through its paces to help prepare for broader release. We made the choice to start with a very small group of testers because we think it's better for both our customers and for Microsoft to keep the beta program small at the start.

A later pre-release of SP1 will be available to a larger group of testers via MSDN and TechNet subscribers.

And what about SP1 itself -- when will that be available?
We're targeting releasing SP1 to manufacturing in the first quarter of 2008, but as always, 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. (FYI, in case you didn't already know: the Windows Vista SP1 and Windows Server 2008 engineering efforts are aligned, so the Server team also said on their blog today that they are targeting the first quarter of 2008 for their release to manufacturing.)

View: Windows Vista Blog
View: Windows Vista Service Pack 1 Beta White Paper

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21 Comments

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pretty soon these people will start using bittorrent to release their patches and then limit it (buying up the patents) then claim all the p2p people stole it and are corrupting the internet with their scandalous filth... what next...

Microsoft screwed up not letting you slipstream it. So what choice do we have then? Wait for this 'limited availability ISO' to show up on 'other' sites? C'mon Microsoft, you can do better.

So? If you are a Volume License customer or a new purchaser you will get a disk with it integrated in. they will probably do what they did with XP SP2 and allow you to order a 'free' DVD with it on it.
Either way it is in Beta and as this is a feature that people will want especially for a small corporate/home environment it may well be built in to the final release. People need to stop bitching about things when they are only just starting in beta. Generally what you get in beta isnt the same as whats in full release so only time will tell

It looks like you cannot slipstream.

On the white paper it states:

SP1 will change a significant number of files; customers cannot apply SP1 to offline Windows Vista images.

farther down in the white paper it does state this though:

"Slipstream. The slipstream version of Windows Vista SP1 is media that already contains the service pack, which companies can use to deploy the operating system to new computers or to upgrade existing computers. Availability will be limited. Microsoft will update Windows Vista retail media with Windows Vista SP1 slipstream media in the future. Slipstream media will also be available to Volume Licensing customers."

profets003 said,
farther down in the white paper it does state this though:

"Slipstream. The slipstream version of Windows Vista SP1 is media that already contains the service pack, which companies can use to deploy the operating system to new computers or to upgrade existing computers. Availability will be limited. Microsoft will update Windows Vista retail media with Windows Vista SP1 slipstream media in the future. Slipstream media will also be available to Volume Licensing customers."

that kind of sucks? a way for them to make more money i guess

profets003 said,
farther down in the white paper it does state this though:

"Slipstream. The slipstream version of Windows Vista SP1 is media that already contains the service pack, which companies can use to deploy the operating system to new computers or to upgrade existing computers. Availability will be limited. Microsoft will update Windows Vista retail media with Windows Vista SP1 slipstream media in the future. Slipstream media will also be available to Volume Licensing customers."

Yea, its a shame about no manual slipstream however I found this while reading about related SP1 news today.

ozzieXP said,

that kind of sucks? a way for them to make more money i guess

how are they going to make more money? its nothing different from previous OSes. when you buy a pc while sp1 or sp2 was out with xp it had the updated version installed, and a reinstall disc with xp+sp1 or xp+sp2.

they havent outright said that slipstreaming will not be possible. we'll have to wait and see. i doubt theyll want to prevent people from slipstreaming. most of the time i'd think its IT professionals and enthusiasts that make use of that feature.

profets003 said,
they havent outright said that slipstreaming will not be possible. we'll have to wait and see. i doubt theyll want to prevent people from slipstreaming. most of the time i'd think its IT professionals and enthusiasts that make use of that feature.

Yes they have. Offline servicing = integration/slipstreaming.

Flint2 said,

Yes they have. Offline servicing = integration/slipstreaming.

Eh, you will probably be able to do it with vLite when it gets updated. I'm sure there will be SOME way around it.

WICKO said,

Eh, you will probably be able to do it with vLite when it gets updated. I'm sure there will be SOME way around it.

There is, as that article linked to here which provides a guide on how to do it and also says that no tool from MS or vLite can currently integrate the main SP1 .cab file. vLite depends on MS being able to do it with their own tools as vLite uses MS's API's for wim manipulation/integration etc. If MS can't do it, then it won't be easy at all for vLite to do it.

Flint2 said,

There is, as that article linked to here which provides a guide on how to do it and also says that no tool from MS or vLite can currently integrate the main SP1 .cab file. vLite depends on MS being able to do it with their own tools as vLite uses MS's API's for wim manipulation/integration etc. If MS can't do it, then it won't be easy at all for vLite to do it.

you never know. they could still change their mind and allow slipstreaming. we're still half a year away from final release.
anyway, all these copies of vista rtm are just a dvd. the same dvd can accept different keys. copies of vista incl sp1 will be all over the place.. if you have a legit key already then you could always use that to install in the future

they should be, otherwise their servers would be hammered all day long downloading 1GB of updates (generally speaking) IT Admins would hate this if each machine had to do that and all those users (with the killing off of Autopatcher) The current leaked pre-beta doesn't ahve the switches to enable it be slipstreamed (installing it now) and it's a pain in the butt to keep formatting everytime to install a new SP1 (you can't upgrade from pre-beta sp1 to pre-beta sp1 so far)

You should read the blog post (and the white paper) on one of the two is says that if you are running the install from Windows update it requires ~50MB.

Lant said,
You should read the blog post (and the white paper) on one of the two is says that if you are running the install from Windows update it requires ~50MB.

Even so, 1GB worth of files have been changes. Thats probably over 200 files that have been motified. I don't know about you, but thats quite a number of changes.

Not bashing or anything, just really surprised about how much work they've done - and new features that will come over from Windows 2008 too