Microsoft Windows XP SP2b Available in Japan

Windows XP SP2b seems to have appeared in Japan. It is somehow strange because at the shops, there are boxes which are labelled SP2b but Microsoft has not make any official announcement of a SP2b.

There is no special marking for the CDROM except the box that holds it (see picture).
Windows XP Professional SP2b retails for 19210 Yen and Home Edition SP2b retails for 12780 Yen.

Image: Box shot
News source: OCW Forums
Link: Neowin Discussion

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There's nothing about it mentioned on Microsoft's website for OEM's. I even searched for it and turned up nothing. There is however one technet article that refers to it, but only as a requirement for whatever the article was about.