Windows Vista Service Pack (SP) 1 is done. But Microsoft's other major Windows service pack, Windows XP SP3, continues to wind its way through the testing process.
On February 7, Microsoft delivered a new test build of XP SP3 to its inner circle of 15,000 pre-selected testers, company officials said. The newest test build is labeled as XP SP3 Release Candidate (RC) 2.
Microsoft's statement (sent to me via e-mail on February 8):
"Yesterday, we released Windows XP SP3 RC 2 to private beta testers. This release catches the build up on previously released hotfixes and responds to critical feedback from previous betas. We are targeting 1H 2008 for the release of XP SP3 RTM, though our timing will always be based on customer feedback as a first priority."
The RC2 build of XP SP3 follows the XP SP3 RC1 Refresh 2 build Microsoft provided to the same 15,000 testers in late January.
I asked Microsoft this week if there was any truth to a post circulating that claimed the company has decided to release the final XP SP3 bits in mid-March. A spokeswoman said the company's official word on XP SP3 availability, as some time in the first half of 2008, is all that will be said on the planned release date.