Haruka's Tech Blog
Injuration: March 2008

Is Microsoft Playing Games With XP SP3?

It's a question that is burning up the blogosphere with some speculating that Microsoft has delayed XP SP3, a long awaited release that could boost the performance of XP, to get more users to adopt Vista, a potential cash cow for Microsoft and PC makers given the operating system's robust hardware refresh requirements.

With many in the blogosphere speculating that Microsoft could release the final version of XP SP3 this week, Microsoft late Tuesday snuffed out all hope that users would see the service pack, originally slated for release in 2006, any time soon.

Instead of a final XP SP 3 release, Microsoft announced late Tuesday a refresh to the XP SP3 Release Candidate 2 version it posted to its Download Center just last month. The software giant cited the need to elicit more feedback from testers, but some solution providers aren't buying it.

"I think Microsoft is withholding XP SP3 until all of the smoke has blown over with Vista SP1," said Patrick Derosier, co-owner of CPU Guys, a Hanson, Mass system builder. "They are dealing with a driver backlash from Vista SP1 which was released only last week."

Derosier said Microsoft is grappling with a raft of Vista driver issues that is hampering the adoption of the operating sytem. He said CPU Guys recommends users stick with XP rather than move to Vista.

Derosier said Vista is not ready for prime time yet. "Vista still needs a lot more hardware support in the form of drivers from major vendors before we can recommend it," he said. "You can tell there is a problem when a major Intel video driver on many chipsets has a problem."

Written by Haruka Takahashi on Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Apple keen to push Safari 3.1 on Windows users.

If you run iTunes or QuickTime or any Apple software on your Windows PC, but not Safari, you might have seen an uninvited guest show up in the Apple Software Update earlier this week. Yes, Apple thinks you need yet another browser. They tried to slip the new Safari 3.1 in for iTunes owners, a move that has some Windows users up in arms.

The program is usually used for updating Apple software, and so getting new software with the deal wasn't something a lot of users expected. And users who don't do anything but the default, are basically going to be getting software they didn't plan to have.

Written by Haruka Takahashi on Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Windows Vista Service Pack 1 Released

Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) is an update to Windows Vista that addresses feedback from our customers. In addition to previously released updates, SP1 will contain changes focused on addressing specific reliability, performance, and compatibility issues; supporting new types of hardware; and adding support for several emerging standards. SP1 also will continue to make it easier for IT administrators to deploy and manage Windows Vista. Windows Vista Service Pack 1 Five Language Standalone version can be installed on systems with any of the following language versions: English (US), French, German, Japanese, or Spanish (Traditional).

Download: Service Pack 1 for Windows Vista 32bit [434.5 MB]
Download: Service Pack 1 for Windows Vista 64bit [726.5 MB]
View: Vista SP1 overview

(For most people, you probably only need the 32bit version)

Written by Haruka Takahashi on Wednesday, March 19, 2008