Volume licensing customers will get earlier access to the English version of Vista Service Pack 1.
Microsoft has made Windows Vista Service Pack 1 available to its TechBeta
customers, and will release the English version of the service pack to its
volume licensing customers Feb. 15.
MSDN and TechNet subscribers will get access to the service pack later in
February, while general availability is still planned for mid-March, Mike Nash,
Microsoft's corporate vice president for Windows product management, said in a
post on the Vista team blog
When Microsoft released the final code for Windows Vista SP1 to
manufacturing Feb. 4, Nash said the final product would be made available to volume licensing customers
The reason for the delay was largely because there were still issues involving
a small set of drivers that needed to be reinstalled once SP1 was loaded onto a
machine, he said.
That meant that when SP1 was made available via Windows Update, and if the
update system determined that the machine had one of the drivers Microsoft knew
to be problematic, then Windows Update would not offer SP1, Nash said.
"But, as some customers may want to update to SP1 anyhow, the download
center will allow anyone who wants to install SP1 to do so from mid-March,"
Nash said at that time.
In his post Feb. 11, Nash said there was an issue with the way the device
drivers were re-installed during the SP1 update process and not with the
drivers themselves. "This type of issue can be addressed by our more
technical customers since they are comfortable reinstalling drivers," he
said, pointing out that the driver issue would not affect new PCs with Windows
Vista SP1 pre-installed.
Microsoft is working with the device manufacturers to get these drivers and
their install programs updated, as well as on other solutions to ensure a
smooth customer experience when updating to SP1 over Windows Update, he said.
Nash also made clear that Microsoft had no intention of making any changes
to the final Vista SP1 code before it is made publicly available, despite the
"Windows Vista SP1 is final. It has been fully released to
manufacturing and we do not plan to make any changes to the SP1 code prior to
public availability. ... Our goal here is to address the needs of our customers
while delivering the best experience," he said.
SP1 brings improvements in the reliability and performance of Vista,
as well as changes such as speeding up everyday processes like copying or
moving files around a PC, home or corporate network.
Many business are hopeful that Vista SP1 will deliver the improvements Microsoft has been promising.