Microsoft Releases Stand-Alone Installers for Vista SP2, Windows Server 2008

Microsoft releases stand-alone installers for Windows Vista Service Pack 2 and Windows Server 2008, and posts a workaround for those who use the installation tool vLite and have trouble updating to Vista SP2. Microsoft Windows 7 represents a major comeback hope for the software company after the relative failure of Vista.

Microsoft has made available stand-alone installers for Windows Vista Service Pack 2 and Windows Server 2008, available in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. Updates include native support for Blu-ray burning and refinements to the Wi-Fi configuration.

The Vista SP2 installation requires that the user already have Vista SP1. The release features support for five languages: English, German, Spanish, French and Japanese. The download site can be found here; those wanting an installation for x64-based systems can find the site here.

Microsoft has also advised that anyone using the installation tool vLite for Vista should rely on a workaround, found here, when installing Vista SP2. Apparently vLite has a nasty habit of accidentally deleting files needed for SP2 installation.

Microsoft also issued a clarification about Windows 7 on May 26.

"Over the weekend, some of you may have received an e-mail from us reminding you that the Windows 7 Beta expires on Aug. 1, 2009," Brandon LeBlanc, a spokesperson for Microsoft, wrote on the official Windows blog. "The Windows 7 Beta does expire on Aug. 1, 2009; unfortunately, the date for when the bi-hourly shutdowns will begin for the Windows 7 Beta was incorrect."

The bi-hourly shutdowns, which make the PC stop running every 2 hours unless a version of the program that has not expired is installed, will begin on July 1, rather than the previously reported June 1.

The Windows 7 Release Candidate, which will be available through at least June 2009 and expire on June 1, 2010, will experience the bi-hourly shutdowns beginning on March 1, 2010. Microsoft, hungry for an operating system success, has focused on updating each new version of Windows 7 with a variety of patches and fixes.

For the fiscal third quarter ended March 31, Microsoft reported a 6.5 percent year-over-year decline in revenues, its first-ever quarterly revenue decline.