I've got to admit that I wouldn't be surprised to see Microsoft table Service Pack (SP) 3 for Windows XP, as Windows expert Paul Thurrott claims the Redmondians have done.
"The company has completely abandoned Windows XP, and it has absolutely no plans to ever ship an XP SP3," Thurrott posted to his Web site on April 6. "My guess is that Microsoft will do what it did with the final Windows 2000 Service Pack: Claim years later that it's no longer needed and just ship a final security patch roll-up. This is the worst kiss-off to any Microsoft product I've ever seen, and you'd think the company would show a little more respect to its best-selling OS of all time."
Last fall, Microsoft admitted that XP SP3 had slipped and was now a 2008 deliverable. If Microsoft were to go a step further and dump XP SP3, such a move wouldn't be too shocking, especially given Redmond's ongoing reticence to commit to Vista SP1 because service packs are passe.
I asked Microsoft for an official comment on Thurrott's XP SP3 post and received the following response:
"SP3 for Windows XP Home Edition [and Professional] is currently plannedfor 1H CY2008. This date is preliminary," said a Microsoft spokeswoman.
In other words: At least for now, Microsoft is sticking by the XP SP3 information on its product-lifecycle page.
Anyone else hearing SP3 will (or won't) be a 2008 deliverable?
(Note: I erroneously wrote "Q1" instead of "first half" of 2008 in my original headline. My apologies.)