Microsoft Corp. on Thursday released the fourth service pack for Windows 2000, which contains the latest updates and security patches and fixes as well as support for USB 2.0 and 802.1x on the desktop.
Microsoft released the Windows 2000 SP 3 some 11 months ago, at the end of July 2002.
This latest service pack was based on customer feedback and Microsoft internal testing. "Windows 2000 SP4 builds on the already demonstrated high quality of Windows 2000 by incorporating updates for increased security, application and hardware compatibility, operating system reliability and ease of Windows 2000 set up. Also incorporated is support for USB 2.0 and support for 802.1x—two of the biggest benefits to the desktop in this release," a company spokeswoman said.
Microsoft also updated its End User License Agreements (EULA) with SP4, which now alerts customers to the fact that they can turn off certain features they may not want to enable. These changes are documented in the "Automatic Internet-Based Services" section of the agreement and will "provide better disclosure and more control," the spokeswoman said.
Windows 2000 SP4 can be applied to Windows 2000 Professional, Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Advanced Server, and Windows 2000 with the Server Appliance Kit. The code for SP4 will be available for download from the Web and on CD. "We always encourage customers to evaluate and install the latest updates for their systems to take advantage of updated functionality," the spokeswoman said.
The release of SP4 comes just a day after Microsoft issued a bulletin warning users of a flaw in a Windows 2000 Server component that could allow attackers to execute code on vulnerable machines. The flaw does not affect machines running Windows NT, XP or Windows Server 2003.