SP3 Under Suspicion Again

SP3 Under Suspicion Again

Summary: I find myself suspecting that there is something very strange wrong with Windows XP SP3, or at least with the installation procedure for it. I had been running this Fujitsu Lifebook S6510 with Windows XP Professional for several months when SP3 came out.

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TOPICS: Linux
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I find myself suspecting that there is something very strange wrong with Windows XP SP3, or at least with the installation procedure for it. I had been running this Fujitsu Lifebook S6510 with Windows XP Professional for several months when SP3 came out. I installed it, and everything seemed to work just fine. However, because I have started to use Linux quite a bit more, and I wanted a multi-boot system with Windows and Linux available, I bought a new SATA disk, and reloaded everything from scratch.

As described previously, the first time I reloaded XP, and I just let it go through the update download and installation from the Microsoft Update server the way it wanted, I ended up with three updates which would not install. So I went through the entire reload procedure again, and this time I forced those three updates to install before allowing SP3 to install. That seemed to work ok, but within a few days I started getting BSOD crashes, system hangs, and various other unpleasant surprises from XP. This laptop had most certainly not done that before, so I went back and reloaded one more time. This time I didn't let it install SP3 at all, I just forced it to install all of the SP2 updates. Since then, the laptop has run flawlessly, not a single BSOD.

I don't necessarily think there is anything wrong with SP3 itself. But based on this experience, and what has been posted here by several others, I think there may well be something wrong with the installation procedure for XP3 when you are loading a new system from scratch. I have no idea whether it is a sequencing problem, or an interaction problem, or whether letting SP3 install early in the update sequence causes some critical updates not to be installed.

Whatever it is, it is real, we have seen it in several different cases now. Since I am using Windows less and less, I'm not going to press my luck and install SP3 again. But wouldn't it be interesting to know exactly what is happening and why?

jw 18/7/2008

Topic: Linux

J.A. Watson

About J.A. Watson

I started working with what we called "analog computers" in aircraft maintenance with the United States Air Force in 1970. After finishing military service and returning to university, I was introduced to microprocessors and machine language programming on Intel 4040 processors. After that I also worked on, operated and programmed Digital Equipment Corporation PDP-8, PDP-11 (/45 and /70) and VAX minicomputers. I was involved with the first wave of Unix-based microcomputers, in the early '80s. I have been working in software development, operation, installation and support since then.

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2 comments
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  • SP3 Under Suspicion Again

    If you ask a Microsoft rep, he will tell you the reason. The fault lies in the user. I had the same problem trying to install SP2 to an older version. I finally just gave up and bought a copy with SP2 included. SP3 hasn't given me any problems on the partition I use, but I only use XP for games so I don't know, nor care, what is happening anywhere else.
    ator1940
  • SP3 Under Suspicion Again

    Hi there.....I had trouble getting SP3 on my machine, three attempts from MS update, and nothing. I wish I could remember were this site was (yes I trusted it) because it offered SP 3 as an apparently
    unorthodox .exe.

    I paused for thought and then saved it to an empty thumb drive, hoping there was no way it could leap on to my machine somehow
    without my permission.

    I scanned it and it was clean, so i installed it and now everything is
    running beautifuly. I must state, that my test rig is old (2002 advent 7011) ,but somehow very fast.

    roger andre