Vista SP1 Beta and Windows Server 2008 are out of the way
The first taste of the third service pack for Windows XP was delivered concomitantly with the initial version of the first refresh for Windows Vista in July. At the end of August, Microsoft started talking Windows Vista Service Pack 1. Free from the Windows Omerta imposed by Steven “codename Translucency” Sinofsky, the Senior Vice President, Windows and Windows Live Engineering Group, Nick White, Product Manager and Jon DeVaan, senior vice president of the Windows Core Operating System division both officially promised Vista SP1 Beta by the end of September.
Concomitantly, but with a less official aura, Microsoft indicated that the first beta of Windows XP SP3 would also be delivered to MSDN and TechNet subscribers in September. But XP SP3 simply got asphyxiated under Windows Vista SP1, although over 80% of Windows users are currently running XP compared to just the 6% that have migrated/upgraded to Vista. But as far as the Redmond company is concerned, it got it priorities straight and Vista SP1 Beta was pushed to the foreground, while XP SP3 was buried in the background noise.
Initially, it seemed that the beta versions of Windows XP and Windows Vista were joined at the hip. This because Microsoft launched pre-beta versions of the two service packs almost simultaneously to a limited pool of testers. Additionally, the company had revealed plans of synchronizing all updates for both the Windows client and server operating systems. This week, both Windows Vista SP1 Beta and Windows Server 2008, formerly codenamed Longhorn, Release Candidate 0 were made available for download. Vista shipped to some 12,000 testers via connect.microsoft.com.
In the meantime, Windows XP SP3 is missing in action, and Microsoft is not breathing a single word. Windows Vista SP1 and Windows Server 2008 are planned for availability in the first quarter of 2008, the server platform at the end of February, with Vista SP1 following it to the market. But with XP SP3 still set for sometime in the first half of 2008, Microsoft is failing to mention it in the least. However, XP SP3 might be just around the corner…