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October 19, 2006

Windows XP and Server 2003 service packs move right

Posted by David Hunter at 9:29 PM ET.

The folks at Neowin have been checking the Windows Service Pack Roadmap and noticed an update this Tuesday that preliminarily placed Windows XP SP3 in 1H2008 and Windows Server 2003 SP2 definitely in 1Q2007.

XP SP3 had already been delayed from 2006 to 2007 and this latest move received a poor reception with Vista marketing conspiracy theories abounding. Whatever the Microsoft rationale, the primary utility of a late service pack like SP3 is to roll up all the fixes since the last service pack - in this case, XP SP2 in August 2004 making nearly 4 years of patches. Given the number of monthly security patches Microsoft is generating these days, it’s already quite an annoyance installing an XP SP2 system and then downloading and applying all the patches and this means no relief is in sight. That’s why 3rd parties are creating their own rollups (e.g. AutoPatcher) in the absence of official service packs. With the users creating their own security patches and their own service packs maybe Microsoft ought to consider subcontracting?

As for Windows Server 2003, SP2 availability had been expected this year, but the delay is less annoying since SP1 was released in March 2005, so it’s only about a two year gap. Speaking of which, reports that Beta Refresh 2 of SP2 was released to testers today.

Filed under Beta and CTP, OS - Client, OS - Server, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows XP

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3 Responses to “Windows XP and Server 2003 service packs move right”

  1. More Microsoft server announcements from IT Forum -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Speaking of which, the Longhorn Server roadmap was updated: there will be a Beta 3 due in 1H2007. Also, a release candidate of Windows Server 2003 SP2 was made available to the Customer Preview Program. The last we had heard was that SP2 release wasn’t going to make 2007, and that still seems to be the case. [...]

  2. Microsoft releases Windows Server 2003 SP2 -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 2 page has links to all the various downloads and tools and the SP2 Technical Overview explains the installation paths for the various versions as well as explaining what’s new and improved. Although SP2 was expected in 1Q and there isn’t much of that left, it arrived without warning and that has some system administrators a little grumpy. Filed under OS – Client, OS – Server, Windows Server 2003, Compute Cluster, Windows Server 2003 R2, Microsoft, XP x64 [...]

  3. Windows XP SP3 beta coming in September, AutoPatcher killed -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Microsoft loves the mantra that service packs are superfluous due to the joys of Windows Update which misses the point that installing new systems is a huge pain due to all the separate patches that have to be downloaded and applied, which at this point for Windows XP is four years worth. That’s why Windows enthusiasts had developed AutoPatcher which combined all of the available fixes for easy application in the same way as a roll-up service pack like SP3. Now the Microsoft lawyers have gotten involved and stopped that: Microsoft Legal defies logic today by forcibly removing a free and trustworthy software package which makes updating Windows more convenient and accessible. [...]

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