Is Microsoft rushing Vista SP1 to boost adoption?

Is Microsoft rushing Vista SP1 to boost adoption?

Summary: Over the weekend my blogging colleague Mary Jo Foley reported that Microsoft is set to deliver Vista SP1 beta by mid-July. Sounds to me like Microsoft is rushing SP1 out of the door in order to encourage business users to adopt the new OS.

TOPICS: Microsoft, Windows

Over the weekend my blogging colleague Mary Jo Foley reported that Microsoft is set to deliver Vista SP1 beta by mid-July.  Sounds to me like Microsoft is rushing SP1 out of the door in order to encourage business users to adopt the new OS.

SP1 is not so much an update for Vista but more a marketing toolThere are several aspects of Mary Jo's report, which if they turn out to be true (or even close to true) suggest that Microsoft is fast-tracking SP1.  For example, dropping the beta in by mid-July and then the final version in November is fast turn-around for Microsoft and suggests that SP1 is not so much an update for Vista but more a marketing tool than the company wants to have at its disposal.  Also, Vista SP1 is more about bug fixes, minor tweaks and giving Vista a bit of a tune up than a raft of new features.  There have been suggestions that SP1 would bring to Vista a whole new kernel (bringing Vista's kernel in line with Windows Server 2008), but if the beta period is only four months, I doubt that's enough time to shake the bugs out of a major kernel update, especially considering that some service packs have seen a beta life-cycle of a year or so. 

There's no doubt that Vista needs a service pack.  The more systems I roll Vista out on and the more I see (and feel) the bugs.  But a rushed service pack is something I and everyone else having to deal with Vista can do without, thank you very much Microsoft.  But there's a huge incentive for Microsoft to rush Vista SP1.  While Vista is selling well in the consumer market (how many consumers believe they have a choice?), businesses are far more wary, with many admins claiming that they are waiting for SP1.  Well, it seems that come November this excuse will no longer apply.  I wonder if businesses will then take the leap of faith and embrace Microsoft or substitute the "we're waiting for SP1" excuse for another excuse.  Maybe they'll then wait for SP2.

One thing's for sure, if SP1 does make a beta appearance in July and is released in November, I'll be taking great care when rolling it out.  I sincerely want to avoid applying a buggy service pack over onto an OS that has more than its fair share of "features."

[poll id=157]


Topics: Microsoft, Windows

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  • Am I alone out here?

    Am I the only person on the planet who has had a great experience with VISTA? Nevr ever had an issue with it - works like a dream - no issues whatsoever.

    I have used Windows in some version forever since 3.1 and this has been the most stable and easy to use yet. Powerful enough to handle my needs.

    I got mine preinstalled on a Gateway 17" laptop. Is that the difference? Are the problems coming from people who are upgrading?

    I will wait till November's release of the real SP1 and not this July rushed version.

    Jump in folks - VISTA is great!
    • I think I heard a pin drop.....

      Well, I think the answer is...YES! You are the one and only.
    • No, not only one

      You are not the only one. I too have had very good experience with Vista, installing it on 1 new notebook and 4 old (2 notebook and 2 desktop) systems. I did give up on using OneCare on Vista, though, but found that Nod32 and Defender to be good replacement.
    • My Vista experience has been great too

      The only driver issue I've faced has been solved by installing the XP driver. Other than that, Vista has been better than XP in every single way on my work laptop.

      The level of anti-Microsoft FUD from the Mac and Linux zealots is unsurpassed in all of history which tells me that some people are very scared of Vista. Gee, I wonder why they would be so afraid of something they profess is [b]so[/b] astronomically bad? ;)

      Me, I'll continue to use Linux where it makes sense (and OSX where it makes sense though OSX never makes sense anywhere) but Microsoft hit one out of the park with Vista.
      • I wouldn't jump to that conclusion

        seeing as I've heard more credible stories about driver issued from MS fans than non-MS zealots. My laptop has been fine for the last month, but I've pretty much got all Intel hardware, and Intel is not one of those companies we're reading about with driver issues. But I do know of others with ATI or nVidia video chips, and people with non-Intel-hda soundcards, and people with non-Intel network chips (mostly wireless, but I do know of one person with a wired problem), and a lot of people with scanners who have a lot of problems with Vista.
        Michael Kelly
        • You are partially right

          Yes, I didn't mean to imply that others weren't having driver issues, only that I wasn't.

          If, however, you were responding to the FUD comment in my post, I stand by it. The FUD isn't about drivers, it is about DRM, WGA, Vista not working on anything other than brand new hardware, UAC being intrusive, not being able to install without admin privileges (although according to the same people, XP was bad [b]because[/b] it allowed you to install without admin privileges), Microsoft not changing the core OS enough, Microsoft changing the core OS too much (hence all the driver issues), etc. That is the FUD I'm talking about.
          • But do understand

            that you will always get FUD from the fringe element. You just have to get over that. Most people who do not like those things (myself included) understand that this is the way it's going to be, and that we have a choice to use other software if MS's terms are unacceptable. BTW, DRM doesn't bother me because it doesn't do anything unless your media is DRM restricted, so I simply will not use such media whose DRM terms I find unacceptable. And personally I like what MS is doing with regards to installing programs. It needs some tweaking, but they are on the right track finally.

            But anyhow, MS has to ignore the fringe element and identify the real problems. And driver issues are real problems.
            Michael Kelly
      • Well...

        <i>The level of anti-Microsoft FUD from the Mac and Linux zealots is unsurpassed in all of history which tells me that some people are very scared of Vista.</i>

        It's not fear. Not at all. Some people may have had positive experiences with Vista, but a lot of people haven't. For the first time, many people are actively searching for an alternative to Windows AND Linux and OSX are more viable (now, than previously)solutions for those people. Linux and Mac users see an opportunity to gain more of a following and are thus exploiting the publicity of Vista's failings.

        Denying that Vista has any problems, or that only very few people experience those issues does not help Microsoft. I agree however, that Vista is not going to mean the end of the world as some people would like everyone to think. So far, it's meant more business for me. ;)
    • Nope - count me in as well...

      I have it on my home machine, and I bought a low-end HP Pavilion for our Swim Team and with Home Premium and it works great! never had a problem with Vista. My hardware at home has had problems, but Vista has been GREAT!
  • Waiting on SP1 not just business's

    anymore... I have heard a lot of consumers stating that they want to buy a new PC but are waiting for SP1 to be released because friends, family members, local tech, told them to wait for it before switching to Vista.<br><br>I found Vista to be the best thing to happen to my Linux PC business in years! So I love their new OS and hope they never release that service pack. ;-} <br><br>

    devlin_X <br>-=Anyone who thought ?the customer is always right? Never worked in tech support=-
  • False dichotomy

    So does a "no" vote mean:

    * that (like Mike Cox) they're not waiting at all,
    * Hell will freeze over,
    * something in between?
    Yagotta B. Kidding
    • Hmm.

      The poll does seem to assume everyone IS going to roll out Vista. Bad assumption for a lot of folks.
  • What is that poll about?

    What does just yes and no prove?

    'No' could mean a multitude of things... No, I am rushing VISTA out the door my MCSE's don't have time to sleep or No, I am quite happy with XP.

    I don't know why ZDNet have these polls... many of them, especially Adrians are so geared towards proving a point regardless of the actual trend!

  • What's the issue?

    MS has said for months, well before Vista release, that there would be SP1 release at same time as Longhorn server (now Windows Server 2008) release, to complete the Vista OS tie-in to the server and security platform. Nothing about any timelines released by MS or "guessed" at by columnists (Foley included) have been any different than that timeline. MS latest expectation for WS2008 is 4Q 2007. So would not Vista SP1 also be that same timeframe?

    ULTIMATE IS Still #1, as Sever beta3 2008 is made from elemaents numbered slightly below Ultimate, although yearolder. I am Known & Wanton Beta Tester, Now that big step from pentium to finalized dual core will mean ole Uncle TOM, der Darkie, will be letting go & just swiming with Vista Ultimate, Copy I got from MICROSOFT at Tech Tour '7 in washington,DC. Don't be afraid to go ULTIMATE now, its done &MICROSOFT MAN At Tech tour told US all that Vista SP1 will be very soon, within month?& thats two weeks ago. So I believe some form of SP1, perhaps better than final? will be out first & scale back to disc, yet that disc has too much space not to wonder if it wouldn't be '8 incorporating its real only service pack as even Vista has its limits & running correctly on Hardware that psses every test is 100% Done Deal, its BEST. Buy Now Maties.& BUILD.

  • Vista and the consumer

    Vista is not selling well in the consumer market, HP, Dell and Gateway PCs are selling well. Vista is just what they come shipped with.
    • I wouldn't be so sure of that....

      Ultimate and Home Premium have been selling well at my two local stores.
      • And they've been stagnant

        at my local MicroCenter. I've seen people bringing copies back, and I've heard sales staff recommend XP instead, and I've had salesman, out of the blue tell me in the PC section how much better Vista is than OS X (MicroCenters sell both Mac and PC in the same store). So that tells me more people are showing an interest in OS X than Vista at this store and that customers aren't hot and eager for Vista. Especially when they find out just how crippled the lower priced versions are.

        So, my anecdotal evidence trumps your anecdotal evidence.
      • Haven't been doing so well here.

        In fact there have been quite few people I've heard complaining that they can't buy a laptop with XP on it. One lady told me that the salesman at the electronics store told her just to wait a bit, since the retailers were trying to get Microsoft to pull Vista or at least go back to offering XP since it was hurting their sales so much.
  • Really need a third option on that poll

    This would be "have no plans to deploy", which is my employer's position (which I had no part in making, BTW, even though I concur with it).
    John L. Ries