I'm hearing from a couple of my contacts that Microsoft plans to announce on February 9 that Service Pack (SP) 1 for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 has finally crossed the finish line.
(There have been a few earlier reports that SP1 was done and out, but today marks the official RTM announcement, my sources say. I've asked Microsoft officials for comment, but no word back so far.)
Word is that the bits will go to OEMs and Technology Adoption Program (TAP) partners today, MSDN/Technet later this month (WinRumors is hearing February 16, I see), and the rest of the Web on February 22.
Besides the usual kinds of fixes, SP1 for Windows client doesn't contain much new beyond a few feature enhancements. The server version includes two new key features: RemoteFX and a dynamic-memory adjustor for Hyper-V.
RemoteFX is a new graphics acceleration platform that is based on desktop-remoting technology that Microsoft obtained in 2008 when it acquired VDI vendor Calista Technologies. The new Hyper-V feature in SP1 will dynamically adjust memory of a guest virtual machine on demand. (The guests supported do not include Windows XP, by the way.)
As Microsoft officials have said before, RemoteFX is a set of RDP technologies, including graphcis virtualization and advanced codecs. With RemoteFX, users will be able to work remotely in a Windows Aero desktop environment, doing everything from watching full-motion videos, to viewing Silverlight animations, to running 3D applications "all with the fidelity of a local-like performance." In other words, users desktops become hosted as part of a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) or a terminal services environment. Via RemoteFX, users can access their remote desktops using standard RDP connections from rich PCs, thin clients, phones and other devices.
Microsoft officials announced last year a deal wtih Citrix, via which Citrix will integrate and use Microsoft RemoteFX within its XenDesktop suite of products and HDX.
Update (1:15 pm ET): Here's the official announcement from Microsoft regarding SP1. The dates in my post above are all correct: OEMs get the code today; MSDN/TechNet on the 16th of February; and general availability is February 22.
Update no. 2: Microsoft also shared a rough timetable on February 9 for its Office 2010/SharePoint 2010 Service Pack 1 plans. Company officials said to expect the first SP, which will be comprised of all minor fixes and updates released previously, anywhere from 12 to 16 months after launch. Those products launched in May 2010, making SP1 due some time between May 2011 and November 2011.