(Note: This post was updated Friday evening to correct availability information around the Windows Vista SP1 preview.)
Microsoft posted to its Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) site on November 2 a note saying the company had made available for download a preview of the near-final Release Candidate (RC) version of Windows Vista Service Pack (SP) 1 via MSDN.
"The MSDN notice about a Windows Vista SP1 RC Preview was posted mistakenly. No code was released today and the MSDN notice has since been removed from the MSDN site. We do expect to issue a Release Candidate for SP1 and are still on target to deliver the RTM in Q1 of CY2008; however, we have no other news to share at this time. "
While the code isn't yet available, the erroneous posting means -- to this Microsoft watcher, at least -- that the broader SP1 beta is imminent. Perhaps we'll see the code next week.... Microsoft won't say, however.
Vista SP1 is slated to remedy a number of reliability and performance issues which have plagued Vista users since Microsoft delivered the operating system late last year. SP1 also includes a couple of new features, including support for new hardware and emerging standards.
Microsoft made a closed test build of Vista SP1 available to about 12,000 testers in late September.
SP1 is slated to be released in final form in the first calendar quarter of 2008. Microsoft announced in late October that it has sold 88 million copies of Vista (to its channel partners) to date.