Microsoft is currently hard at work cooking the first service pack for Windows Vista and the third and final service pack for Windows XP. On top of these two refreshes for its last releases of the Windows client, Microsoft has also debuted in the area of home servers in July 2007, with the RTM of Windows Home Server. At this point in time, Microsoft has dropped Windows Vista SP1 Beta to over 12,000 tests also involved in the development milestones of Windows Server 2008, formerly codenamed Longhorn. A Preview version of Windows XP SP3 Beta was made available to all those involved in test-driving the Beta releases of Vista SP1 and Windows Server 2008. And Windows Home Server was released to manufacturing just a couple of months back.
Microsoft of course plans to make all of the products mentioned above available via the MSDN Subscription program. “Vista SP1 is expected to RTM in the first quarter of 2008, and we would expect to have it on Subscriber Downloads very shortly after release. XP SP3. Windows XP SP3 “SP3 for Windows XP Professional” is currently planned for 1H CY2008. This date is preliminary. Windows Home Server – our acquisitions team is working with the product group to include this in the MSDN offering. We expect it will be offered, but we do not have an estimate of availability,” revealed one of the managers of the online and offline MSDN Subscription program.
Essentially, the final versions of Vista SP1 and XP SP3 will drop via MSDN. And along with them Microsoft will also offer Windows Home Server. No word whatsoever yet as to plans from the Redmond company to deliver the beta versions of Vista SP1 and XP SP1 to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. Microsoft has also promised public versions of the two service packs, but without actually providing a timetable for their availability. The final Vista SP1 is scheduled for the first quarter of 2008, while XP SP3 will be launched sometime until mid 2008. Microsoft is yet to drop a 120-day free evaluation edition of Windows Home Server, although it was initially planned by the end of September 2007.
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