eWEEK Labs First Look at Microsoft Windows Vista SP2 RC

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eWEEK Labs First Look at Microsoft Windows Vista SP2 RC

by Andrew Garcia

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Service Pack 2 for Vista is not cumulative. If you try to install SP2 without SP1, the installer will fail and tell you to install SP1 first.

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With SP1

With SP1 installed, the SP2 installation will proceed.

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Things to Know

The installer presents the chance to view an embedded Web page that enumerates install requirements. Of particular note, Vista SP2 requires a minimum of 7GB of free disk space (or 13GB for x64) for the installation to complete.

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Required Hotfix

Before installing the service pack, the installer adds a needed hotfix to the operating system. KB955430 is a Servicing Stack Update that "handles installation and removal of software updates, language packs, and optional Windows features." WSUS users should note that this hotfix must be predeployed before SP installation via WSUS can proceed.

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This stage of installation took about 19 minutes on my clean VMware-based Vista Ultimate.

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Stage 1 and Stage 2 of the installation completed in just over 3 minutes, before my machine automatically rebooted.

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Stage 3

Stage 3 of the installation took an additional 2 minutes or so before I could then log in to the system.

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The installation process took a grand total of 27 minutes-from the time I started the install process to the time when I could log back in and see this complete message.

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Disk Utilization

Vista SP2 installation on Vista Ultimate consumed about 1.08GB of hard drive space on my system.

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SP2 includes a cleanup command called "compcln.exe" that will remove the previous versions of files that have been updated and replaced in SP2. Running this command recovered about 330MB of space on my system. However, I do not recommend running this command if testing the RC on an in-use system. Users cannot overwrite the gold code for the service pack over this RC-they must instead uninstall the RC first. But "compcln.exe" removed the ability to uninstall the service pack.