Microsoft to push Windows 7 Service Pack 1 to users starting March 19

Microsoft to push Windows 7 Service Pack 1 to users starting March 19

Summary: Microsoft is starting to push Windows 7 SP1 to Windows 7 users via Windows Update, ahead of the early April end-of-support date for the RTM version of the product.


As Microsoft marches toward its early April 2013 end of free support deadline for Windows 7, the company is planning to update automatically some of those who still have yet to install the first (and seemingly only) Service Pack for the operating system.


As announced on March 18 on the Microsoft "Blogging Windows" blog, Microsoft plans to begin rolling out Windows 7 SP1 automatically, via Windows Update to Windows 7 users who still are running the release-to-manufacturing (RTM) version without SP1 installed. This process will begin on March 19. 

From the blog post:

"Starting tomorrow, the installation will be fully automatic with no user action required for those who already have Automatic Update enabled. SP1 will be released gradually over the coming weeks to all customers on the RTM version of Windows 7. The service pack will take slightly longer to install compared to other updates. To ensure Service Pack 1 is installed without issue, customers should check for sufficient free disk space and that AC power is present on a laptop. If additional space needs to be created, we recommend using the Disk Cleanup tool to delete some files so that the service pack will install. If the service pack installation is interrupted, it will reattempt to install automatically after the next restart."

This automatic update will be applied only to Windows 7 consumer PCs that are not managed via other Microsoft management tools like System Center Configuration Manager or Windows Server Update Services (WSUS), the post noted. Some admins have chosen to block temporarily their users from getting SP1 until they've tested it to their satisfaction. Those in that category won't be getting SP1 pushed to them starting tomorrow. 

Windows 7 RTM, with no service pack installed, will no longer be supported as of April 9, 2013, according to a February 14 post on the Microsoft Springboard Series blog. Support for specific Windows releases ends 24 months after the release of a new Service Pack, and Windows 7 SP1 was released in February 2011.

Windows 7 SP1 mainstream (free) support continues until January 13, 2015. Extended (paid) support for Windows 7 SP1 is available until January 14, 2020. (Microsoft continues to provide security updates for free during the Extended support phase of a product.)

Microsoft made available last week a Windows 7 hotfix rollup that includes 90 previously released hotfixes. It's not SP2 for Windows 7, but it's pretty darn close.

Speaking of end-of-support dates, Microsoft has noted that Windows Phone 8's support period is ending in July 2014. I'm not so sure this is the doomsday scenario many are painting this to be. I hope to have more on this later today. In the interim, like Windows SuperSite's Paul Thurrott, my read on this is Windows Phone Blue will arrive and be rolled out to existing phone customers before next July

Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Security


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Is it SP-1 or Sp2 or what ever

    If "It's not SP2 for Windows 7, but it's pretty darn close." What is it REALLy....Is this the way Microsoft puts out 2 different SP within a two week period.

    We'll just have to wait for The true Microsoft techieees Loverock Davidson or Toddbottom3 or Owlllnet if tis alright to use them...................
    Over and Out
    • On second thought maybe Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols

      can figure out Microsoft motives.................He always gets it correcdt in the end...........
      Over and Out
      • Unlikely. SJVN will probably push some Linux Distro to replace any Windows


        His history is about attacking all things Windows and Microsoft.

        He never gets it right.

        (But, I gather you were just being sarcastic. Yes?)
        • Huh

          If you ask me, using Linux instead of Windows *is* getting it right.
          • There is no one size fit all

            I don't see why people think there is one
            Michael Alan Goff
          • Two things wrong with your post...

            1: that you believe anything that comes from SJVN.

            2. that you would actually believe that Linux is anywhere even close to being better than Windows.
          • Huh?

            1) why NOT believe anything from SJVN to at *least* the same extent as believing anything which comes from the Microsoft sycophants and trolls (like you)?

            2) every time I am obliged to use Windows I am reminded that the alternatives *are* better - at least in my opinion. YMMV and your fervent advocacy of anything MS-based comes from your OPINION that it is better, not fact.

            You are no more RIGHT in in your adoration of Windows than anyone who is less enamoured of it than you is "wrong".
      • He never gets it correct, neither in the end

        nor from the begining. But you knew that already, just needed to troll, right?

        Something tells me I got that correct. ;)
        William Farrel
    • Huh?

      Windows 7 SP1 hasn't been put out this week, it's being pushed to users who haven't updated yet.

      I know reading isn't your strong suit, but please try.
      Michael Alan Goff
      • not SP2, but pretty close

        Actually, both of you are half right & half wrong.
        Microsoft released a hotfix 'rollup' last week or so that included 90 previously released hotfixes - and a few new ones. But it is not available through the normal 'Automatic Updates' (at least not yet); it is a Technet release targeted at IT administrators. Click the link Mary Jo included in that paragraph and you will see what I mean.
        Called SBSL (Slow Boot Slow Logon), it includes security patches, updated drivers, api's, etc, and a few performance enhancements. It is targeted at people who are running Win 7 SP1 and Win Server 2008 R2 SP1, and the strong suit of the update will be fully realized for those who apply it to both systems.
        Actually, I would not have even seen it if it weren't for articles like this one on zdnet.
        • Yes, they released a slew of hotfixes

          But they didn't release "two service packs within a week".

          They released Service Pack 1 a long time ago. Even if you call this SP2, then you'd be wrong to say they released two services packs in a week.
          Michael Alan Goff
        • Two good OSes.

          Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. Updates...YES!! Upgrades...NO!!

          Arm A. Geddon
        • SBSL (Slow Boot Slow Logon)

          I downloaded that last week from MSFT site. Entire system crashed. Computer wouldn't start. Took 1/2 and 2 system restore's to get me back and running. Think I'll wait now.
          • Not me

            Installed on 4 systems. No issues.
          • Ditto on Crash Results After SBSL Installation

            At first I thought that it might be due to having a dual boot XP (32 bit)/ WIN7 (64bit) setup on my laptop.

            What are the parameters of your systems that crashed?
        • Notified

          I got an Email from a Microsoft advisor the day it came out. also saw it on various MS blogs and then saw it on TechRepublic.
    • not sp2

      @Exit Stage Right, your comment is misleading at best. Microsoft did not "put out 2 SP within a two week period." Windows 7 SP1 was released in February, 2011, as MJ noted and linked in the article. What they are now doing with SP1 is ensuring that it's installed automatically via Windows Update for those who don't have it and are not managed by other means.

      If one calls the new W7 hotfix rollup a service pack, it would be accurate to say that what it is REALLY is that Microsoft put out 2 SP within a two YEAR period.
    • Errr....

      I guess you don't know much or can't read. SP1 has been out for over 2 years already. Unsure why anyone would not install SP1 [unless you have a pirated copy of Windows or has something that for some strange reason won't work with SP1].
      That update mentioned is a roll-up - not a service pack. It combines 90 hotfixes into one package and is primaril;y intended for enterprises as it has entrprise related fixes - although could be used on a home/workgroup/homegroup computer.
  • Sp1 for win 7

    This has been working for me for a long time..every time I installed windows 7 it has automatically installed SP1 for windows 7. I really don't understand why they would post this, it is old news.
    • Its being pushed

      not as part of update. If you have update set to automatic you see what you see.