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Vista SP1

Steve Hogan

Where is it? Everyone's waiting, let's hurry along.

Service packs are currently being used by Microsoft as a way of delivering updates to reliability and performance, but Vista marks Microsoft's effort to reduce the focus on Service Packs. Users are reminded that the current Update Online Service is available and working as a way to immediately deliver improvements and fixes.

It appears to me that Microsoft is trying hard to address the most glaring complaints from customers in a timely manner. Although likely due to the lack of enthusiasm being shown this new operating system, even their PDF on SP1 Beta is delivered with a clarity and directness I haven't seen before. To put it plainly there seems to be less Bull and more Beef in their pre delivery information. While I see this as a positive, I'm sure detractors will spin it as a well-oiled sales pitch.

Spin aside; the fact is Microsoft has nothing to gain from potential customers waiting for the next service pack before making the switch to Vista. The chorus of "I'm waiting on SP??" is not something they want to hear over the next few years. They want sales not excuses and it appears that Service Packs have become almost the perfect excuse, to not upgrade yet. Microsoft does not want to cultivate waiting. In fact, I'm predicting you'll see Service Packs, weeded, trimmed and downplayed over the next year.

So what are we likely to get in this first Vista Sales Push/ Service Pack? I've included a condensed list below. Some of the items listed will have several areas and multiple fixes involved. This is only a brief listing of areas that the Service Pack should address. I expect reception to this service pack to be on the whole, positive. If what they say is going to be addressed is addressed, then it should improve usability and as a result popularity.

Vista SP1

1. All previously released updates and the ability to uninstall all previously installed updates in an easy manner and in no particular order.

2. Major changes to the Kill Switch (reduced functionality mode), now more of a reminder and less of a lockdown.

3. Online crash analysis and Customer Experience Improvement Service: Opt in service to improve Vista issues. Features customer feedback to MS and delivery of information to hardware and software vendors. It doesn't take much imagination to see where this is going. Speedier delivery of individual fixes.

4. Enhanced protection for drive encryption, BitLocker Drive Encryption (BDE).

5. Improved security for Remote Desktop and Remote App. programs.

6. Overall improved compatibility for security software vendors and specifically for x64 platforms, Improved network boot performance and improvements specifically to make it easier for protection software developers to make patches for x64 versions of Vista. This without disabling or weakening protection offered by the kernel patch protection.

7. Improved reliability and compatibility for "newer graphics cards in several specific scenarios and configurations." Nvidia comes to mind along with SLI configurations.

8. Printer drivers and Windows Terminal Service Session issues.

9. Working Sleep and resume functions

10. Improved networking and better networking diagnostic tools.

11. External displays for laptops

12. Faster copying and extracting of files

13. Reduction of delays when operating domain-joined PCs

14. Improvements to IE7 and Java

15. Reduction in CPU utilization to improve portable battery life also (SD) (DMA)

16. More control of the defragmentation process

17. The addition of an Elliptical Curve Cryptography (ECC) and pseudo-random number generator (PRNG). This is a fix.

18. Added support for FAT file systems used with flash memory storage

19. Support for (SD)(DMA) or Secure Digital Advanced Direct Memory Access. This should increase speed by improving memory use and decreasing CPU use

20. Support for Direct 3D 10.1 by adding APIs, an interface for programming the application.

Vista SP1 release candidate, from the Microsoft Update site, installs easily in as little as 40 minutes. The requirement of 7GB of free space should not be a problem in most cases. The lack of an antivirus or firewall is likely to help the speed of the installation. In my case Vista SP1 Beta does seem to have fixed whatever bug or gremlin was messing with my laptop's sleep and/or resume function. I'd like to be more specific on this, but, to be honest, all I know is, my laptop was powering down, not resuming, and acting generally weird before the installation of SP1 RC, and is not doing that now.

This portable is a recent addition, so I don't have a lot of experience with battery life. Prior to this update I was not able to go even an hour of heavy use without the laptop shutting down during use. Now I'm at two hours and still going. I'm not sure what sort of battery life the rest of you get, but I decided that laptop was a more accurate description than portable. At this point I'm uncertain if the improvement was due to the reduction of CPU utilization and screen redraws or not.

In general the feel is much better than before the installation of Vista SP1 release candidate. Not the quantitative information some are looking for, or the speed increases hoped for, but results none-the less that might increase sales.

Service Pack 1 Beta Overview.pdf

ZDNet SP1 due second half 2 2007

Windows Vista MS Beta

Windows Vista MS SP1 RC

YouTube - Vista Service Pack 1

MS Whitepaper

Today @ PC World Vista Service Pack 1

New Zealand PC World

Download details: Windows Vista Service Pack 1 RC Public Availability Program

Join the Discussion
julescanuck: Vista SP 1 (Fri, 25 Jul 2008 19:39:48 GMT)
QUOTE(brucesar @ 11:15am Fri Feb 1 2008) [snapback]1468249[/snapback]

I bought a Vista laptop in mid-December and have had trouble with it repeatedly shutting down unexpectedly. I can be working on something when my cursor freezes in place and the screen goes blank. The only way I can recover is to force a shutdown (hold the power key until the laptop shuts off). When I reboot I get a message that I Windows did not close properly. I reboot in normal mode and all is okay until the next time. Do you think SP1 would solve this issue or might it be a hardware problem?

Bruce



Hi Bruce! Did you ever figure out a solution to this problem? I have the same issue- I "ctrl-alt-del" to get the task manager if I haven't been quick enough to open a couple of items so that it shows up only on the bottom of the screen. Webroot Spy Sweeper was recommended-didn't work. Any suggestions would be really appreciated. MDG and Microsoft as well as our local computer store can't figure it out. Thanks, Julie.
medicfl1: Vista SP 1 (Mon, 04 Feb 2008 06:57:38 GMT)
The SP1 RC1 is out but I don't hear anyone saying that it is worth downloading?

I've used computers since 1989 (Leading Edge using Lotus 1-2-3) and have never had such problems as I do with Vista.

I consider vista a failure. Aside from the RAM it requires and dissalows you to use. For instance you can't use more than 3 gigs of your 4 gigs of Ram etc...

My new problem is vista willnot recognize my wireless network adapter... man the problems.
brucesar: Vista SP 1 (Fri, 01 Feb 2008 18:15:26 GMT)
I bought a Vista laptop in mid-December and have had trouble with it repeatedly shutting down unexpectedly. I can be working on something when my cursor freezes in place and the screen goes blank. The only way I can recover is to force a shutdown (hold the power key until the laptop shuts off). When I reboot I get a message that I Windows did not close properly. I reboot in normal mode and all is okay until the next time. Do you think SP1 would solve this issue or might it be a hardware problem?

Bruce
JSanders9: Vista SP 1 (Fri, 18 Jan 2008 13:05:22 GMT)
QUOTE(flewpastu @ 12:12pm Thu Jan 17 2008) [snapback]1463431[/snapback]

the ability to select partitions to defragment is in my version of SP1 ...... dont think i had that option before


Yep, just noticed that. I still wish that they would allow you to analyze the drive as well, rather than having to defragment
OceanV47: Vista SP 1 (Fri, 18 Jan 2008 00:33:50 GMT)
QUOTE(flewpastu @ 9:12am Thu Jan 17 2008) [snapback]1463431[/snapback]

the ability to select partitions to defragment is in my version of SP1 ...... dont think i had that option before

Great! Glad to hear that Flew!
shogan191: Vista SP 1 (Thu, 17 Jan 2008 20:11:25 GMT)
Yep, that's a new one that is in the RC and is supposed to be in SP1.
flewpastu: Vista SP 1 (Thu, 17 Jan 2008 17:12:29 GMT)
QUOTE(JSanders9 @ 10:53am Thu Jan 17 2008) [snapback]1463410[/snapback]

I don't think that the "more control of defragmentation" has made it in yet. I see no difference on my laptop.


the ability to select partitions to defragment is in my version of SP1 ...... dont think i had that option before
JSanders9: Vista SP 1 (Thu, 17 Jan 2008 15:53:36 GMT)
QUOTE(flewpastu @ 12:56pm Tue Jan 15 2008) [snapback]1462686[/snapback]

I've been running the SP1 Beta for weeks and its certainly been an improvement
and i doubt the release will be much different . but as Sho said only MS knows for sure when we'll get it


I don't think that the "more control of defragmentation" has made it in yet. I see no difference on my laptop.
brandon: Vista SP 1 (Tue, 15 Jan 2008 17:58:25 GMT)
Hopefully they don't follow the same release schedule they did with Vista. Remove key features, delay it by years, and then call it new & improved.

You like my sig Flew? It's the source code to a C++ program.
flewpastu: Vista SP 1 (Tue, 15 Jan 2008 17:56:47 GMT)
I've been running the SP1 Beta for weeks and its certainly been an improvement
and i doubt the release will be much different . but as Sho said only MS knows for sure when we'll get it
OceanV47: Vista SP 1 (Tue, 15 Jan 2008 16:15:54 GMT)
QUOTE(shogan191 @ 7:37am Tue Jan 15 2008) [snapback]1462623[/snapback]

Hey Ocean.

Only Microsoft knows the answer to that but even with their past track record I think were close.

Bruce, thanks for the heads up. You're right it should be "drive". We'll get it changed.


Yea, no doubt about that sho! Thanks!
brandon: Vista SP 1 (Tue, 15 Jan 2008 15:43:02 GMT)
I think you could further add to the article by adding some charts & graphs & the like detailing battery life of the laptop during use with SP1, and without.

Like seeing how long it can play a movie, how lone it can last idle, stuff like that.

It would be a more interesting way than just saying "Battery life improved".
shogan191: Vista SP 1 (Tue, 15 Jan 2008 15:37:33 GMT)
Hey Ocean.

Only Microsoft knows the answer to that but even with their past track record I think were close.

Bruce, thanks for the heads up. You're right it should be "drive". We'll get it changed.

Bruce: Vista SP 1 (Tue, 15 Jan 2008 08:16:44 GMT)
Steve,

Looks good accept for one thing that I believe may be a typo, but is one that had me concerned.

I believe number 4 should read drive encryption not driver encryption.

I say it had me concerned because enhanced driver encryption to me would mean more DRM directly tied to drivers. Certainly not something that Vista needs more of.

I hope I am correct and it was only a typo on your part.
OceanV47: Vista SP 1 (Tue, 15 Jan 2008 03:16:12 GMT)
So when is it actually due? Wev'e already past the second half of 2007!
Will this be an automatic update to those of us that have already Vista? Like they did with XP?
Inquiring minds want to know!
cmunson: Vista SP 1 (Fri, 11 Jan 2008 21:23:37 GMT)
Steve Hogan outlines the 'promise' of the much anticipated Vista SP 1.

http://www.pcpitstop.com/news/vistasp1.asp
Join the Discussion

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