Even as Microsoft prepares to make the release candidate for Windows Vista Service Pack 1 broadly available to all users this week, the Windows Serviceability Team has released a preview update that improves Vista's performance and reliability.
As the update, which will be available at the Microsoft Download Center, is a preview release, it could change before it is released via Windows Update early next year, currently expected in January, Nick White said in a posting on the Vista team blog.
"We use Windows Update to continually deliver ongoing improvements to our customers so that Windows is always up-to-date. Doing so eliminates the need to wait for larger releases like service packs," he said.
The update improves issues that have been affecting PC performance, including going into or resuming from sleep/hibernate mode under some scenarios. It also updates an issue with the disk spindown feature to improve battery life for portable systems, and improves the performance of disk I/O—essentially the copying, moving and/or deleting large files—by as much as 15 percent, White said, adding that the team "highly encourages you to install it."
A Microsoft spokesperson told eWEEK that this update will be included in Windows Vista SP1 when it is made available in the first quarter of 2008 but that, because of the instrumentation in Windows Vista, "we are able to quickly and easily identify the issues that our customers are facing and respond to those issues quickly."
Read more here about how Microsoft is making the release candidate for Vista SP1 widely available.
A Knowledge Base article that gives more information about the update says that it resolves the "Stop 0x000000A0" error when users try to switch their computer to the hibernate state, as well as the "Stop 0x0000009f" error when they switch their computer to the hibernate or standby state or resume their computer, which has a wireless network connection, from these states.
Read here about the Vista update to fix the "Frankenbuild" monster.
The update also fixes those situations where the disk does not spin down after a specified time of inactivity, the article says. But the update also cautions that some users may find that they are unable to use Windows Explorer to eject removable media after manually applying the update.
If this should occur, Microsoft is pointing those customers to the fix for the issue, known as hotfix 941673, which helps them modify the registry.
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