Posts Tagged ‘Service Packs’

Vista and XP Performance, Reliability and Compatibility Packs

Microsoft has released 2 Windows Vista fix packs and one for Windows XP. The one for XP is actually downloadable now, get it here, the two Vista fix packs have been uploaded to mediafire file serving site and can be downloaded here for the X86 version and the X64 versions here. It is being speculated that these two fix packs will be the majority of what comprises the Windows Vista sp1 and that it will not contain much more, but most all of the service pack information concerning Windows Vista is speculation right now.

938979 Vista Performance and Reliability Pack
This update resolves a number of individual issues which may be affecting some computers running Windows Vista. These issues have been reported by customers using the Error Reporting service, product support, or other means. Installing this update will improve the performance and responsiveness for some scenarios and improves reliability of Windows Vista in a variety of scenarios. Some examples of the improvements contained in this update are:

  • Improves performance in resuming back to the desktop from the Photo and Windows Energy screensaver.
  • Resolves an issue where some secured web pages using advanced security technologies may not get displayed in Internet Explorer on Windows Vista.
  • Resolves an issue where a shared printer may not get installed if the printer is connected to a Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 system and User Access Control is disabled on the Vista client.
  • Resolves an issue where creating AVI files on Vista may get corrupted.
  • Improves the performance in calculating the ?estimated time remaining? when copying/moving large files.
  • Improves performance in bringing up Login Screen after resuming from Hibernate.
  • Resolves an issue where synchronization of offline files to a server can get corrupted.
  • Resolves a compatibility issue with RAW images created by Canon EOS 1D/1DS Digital SLR Camera which can lead to data loss. This only affects RAW images created by these two specific camera models.
  • Resolves an issue where a computer can lose its default Gateway address when resuming from sleep mode.
  • Improves the performance when copying or moving entire directories containing large amounts of data or files.
  • Improves the performance of Vista?s Memory Manager in specific customer scenarios and prevents some issues which may lead to memory corruption.

938194 Vista Compatibility and Reliability Pack

  • Improved reliability and compatibility of Vista when used with newer graphics cards in several specific scenarios and configurations.
  • Improved reliability when working with external displays on a laptop.
  • Increased compatibility with many video drivers.
  • Improved visual appearance of games with high intensity graphics.
  • Improved quality of playback for HD-DVD and Blue-Ray disks on large monitors.
  • Improved reliability for Internet Explorer when some third party toolbars are installed on Vista.
  • Improved Vista reliability in networking configuration scenarios.
  • Improved the reliability of Windows Calendar in Vista.
  • Improved reliability of systems that were upgraded from XP to Vista.
  • Increased compatibility with many printer drivers.
  • Increased reliability and performance of Vista when entering sleep and resuming from sleep.

Source: Major Windows Vista updates, Vista Performance, Reliability and Compatibility Pack

Looks like a lot of improvements for Windows Vista users, lets hope that it is actually the case. No reports from anyone using them currently that I am aware of. Mary Jo Foley got a look at the email sent to the testers and it had some service pack 1 information in it.

Q: What is in Windows Vista SP1?

A: ?Windows Vista SP1 is an update to Windows Vista that, along with improvements delivered to users via Windows Update, addresses feedback from our customers. In addition to previously released updates, SP1 will contain changes focused on addressing specific reliability and performance issues, supporting new types of hardware, and adding support for several emerging standards.?

Q: What is not in Windows Vista SP1?

A: SP1 is not intended to be a vehicle for releasing new features; however some existing components do gain enhanced functionality in SP1. ?

Q: What are some examples of ?improved security and quality??

A: SP1 delivers improvements that target what we?ve found to be the most common causes of crashes and hangs, giving users a more reliable experience. SP1 also improves upon performance in key scenarios, such as copying files and shutdown time.

Beyond improvements to the basics, SP1 addresses other areas where we have received feedback. For example, SP1 improves the success of peer-to-peer connections, such as Windows MeetingSpace or Remote Assistance, when both PCs are behind symmetric firewalls. It also gives vendors of security software a more secure way to communicate with Windows Security Center. Source: New Vista fix packs provide updates promised for SP1

Some of the folks over on the AeroXperience.org website have benchmarked the time it takes to copy files before and after the fixes and the improvements are indeed promising.

During the tests, we quickly found copying small files (1MB-10MB) proved too difficult to time and therefore were cut from the benchmark. The other tests, however, blew us away (sorry, we’re pessimists when it comes to NVIDIA drivers and Microsoft hotfixes)…

After some very lengthy re-learning of percentages, we calculated the transfers completed over twice as fast! One oddity, however, was the fact the speed indicator in the file transfer dialog remained at a fairly constant rate (48MB/s), giving us the impression the speed calculation code is borked. Despite this, however, these numbers are very encouraging given the hotfix’s short life; we can’t wait to see what the final build delivers! Source: KB938979 to Fix File Transfer Woes. No, really.

So, it definitely appears that it will be a help to most people.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - July 30, 2007 at 3:50 pm

Categories: Windows Vista, Windows XP   Tags: , , , , ,

Todays Tech 5/24/2007

Here are some of the latest technology stories floating around the internet today.

Wal-Mart to begin selling Dell PCs Initial word was that the Dell PCs would go on sale this weekend. A representative for Wal-Mart on Thursday morning said that the PCs are slated to be in stores on June 10, with two models each offered in a bundle priced below $700. Details on the PCs were not provided. Sam’s Club and Wal-Mart Canada stores will carry different models.

Copying HD DVD and Blu-ray discs may become legal Under a licensing agreement in its final stages, consumers may get the right to make several legal copies of HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc movies they’ve purchased, a concession by the movie industry that may quell criticism that DRM (digital rights management) technologies are too restrictive.

This is crazy. I can’t believe I just posted a story that said users MAY get the right to copy their OWN property. The movie and music industries suck and they are killing it all by themselves.

Flexible, full-color OLED On May 24, Sony unveiled what it is calling the world?s first flexible, full-color organic electroluminescent display (OLED) built on organic thin-film transistor (TFT) technology. OLEDs typically use a glass substrate, but Sony researchers developed new technology for forming organic TFT on a plastic substrate, enabling them to create a thin, lightweight and flexible full-color display.

Dell Offers Three Consumer Systems With Ubuntu 7.04 Later today, Dell will offer U.S customers three different systems with Ubuntu 7.04 installed: the XPS 410n and Dimension E520n desktops and the Inspiron E1505n notebook. These systems will be available at www.dell.com/open by 4pm CST today. Starting price for the E520n desktop and the E1505n notebook is $599; the XPS 410n starts at $849.

Why Are CC Numbers Still So Easy To Find? Some “script kiddie” tricks still work after all: Take the first 8 digits of a standard 16-digit credit card number. Search for them on Google in “nnnn nnnn” form. Since the 8-digit prefix of a given card number is often shared with many other cards, about 1/4 of credit card numbers in my random test, turned up pages that included other credit card numbers, and about 1 in 10 turned up a “treasure trove” of card numbers that were exposed through someone’s sloppily written Web app.

DOG (Distrust/Disdain of Google) moves in Me? Google is too secretive. Too unwilling to engage. Too aloof. Oh, and Eric Schmidt, Google?s CEO, has lost touch with how normal people think (if these quotes are correct, and that?s a big ?if?). If they are correct I think it?s evidence that he?s been hanging around too many advertising execs lately. Their goal is to put impulses into your mind so you take certain actions (like buy Diet Coke instead of Diet Pepsi). Believe it or not advertising execs talk like that. So, when Eric is reported to have said, during a visit to Britain this week: ?The goal is to enable Google users to be able to ask the question such as ?What shall I do tomorrow?? and ?What job shall I take??? we all get a little freaked out. We don?t want Google to know that much about us.

Windows XP SP3 in the Works – Microsoft Confirms They have confirmed service pack 3, but the date on that article is wrong, according to Microsoft the release date will be 1st half of 2008, whatever that means.

Cyber Crooks Hijack Activities of Large Web-Hosting Firm Brian Krebs talks about IPOWER Inc, on of the hosting companies that was recently featured by Stopbadware.org as one of the largest hosting companies that are currently silently installing malicious software, as detailed here, Exposing Hosting Companies with Malicious Websites. Brian says organized crime is responsible and IPOWER says it was one compromised server run by another company.

Google is failing the Microsoft litmus test If you want to evaluate the ?evil? quotient of any company?s strategy/behavior, consider how you?d feel about it if it were Microsoft in the driver seat.

Vista no panacea for PC sales Although Microsoft has characterized itself as happy with Vista adoption so far?and Bill Gates said last week at WinHEC that Microsoft had shipped 40 million copies?the release of the new operating system has not resulted in a significant bump in PC sales.

Skype Worm Variant Targets Other Instant Messaging Clients Yesterday, I discovered what appears to be a new collection of “Skype Worm” infection binaries in circulation – it uses the tried and tested methods employed by similar infections over the past few months, with the ultimate payload being the Stration Worm. Aside from that, there’s another little surprise waiting but we’ll get to that shortly…

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - May 24, 2007 at 5:14 pm

Categories: Dell, Google, Malicious Websites, Microsoft News, Tech News   Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

How To Get Ready to Upgrade from XP to Vista

Microsoft has posted a nice little summary to get you ready to upgrade your Windows XP machines to Windows Vista. It talks about backing up all of your files, as you should be doing anyway, of course you have to be at Service Pack 2 level, you need to verify the upgrade status of your computer, make sure your programs will still work and that you have enough hard drive space on your NTFS file system.

Verify the upgrade status of the Windows XP-based computer
To determine whether you can upgrade the edition of Windows XP on the computer to Windows Vista, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/buyorupgrade/upgradepaths.mspx (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/buyorupgrade/upgradepaths.mspx)
Additionally, you can use the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor to help determine which edition of Windows Vista you can install. For more information about the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/buyorupgrade/upgradeadvisor.mspx (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/buyorupgrade/upgradeadvisor.mspx)
If you cannot upgrade the version of Windows XP to Windows Vista, perform a custom installation. (This kind of installation is also known as a clean installation.) When you perform a custom installation, you cannot migrate the Windows XP settings to Windows Vista. For more information about how to perform a custom installation of Windows Vista, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
933178 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/933178/) How to install Windows Vista Source: How to prepare to upgrade from Windows XP to Windows Vista

Some of the other KB articles you may have to visit:

308422 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/308422/) How to use the Backup utility that is included in Windows XP to back up files and folders

322389 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/322389/) How to obtain the latest Windows XP service pack

933178 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/933178/) How to install Windows Vista

931359 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/931359/) How to determine whether there are program-compatibility issues before you install Windows Vista

306542 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/306542/) How to use the Desktop Cleanup Wizard in Windows XP

314097 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314097/) How to use Convert.exe to convert a partition to the NTFS file system

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - May 18, 2007 at 6:28 pm

Categories: Windows Vista, Windows XP   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Windows Longhorn Server and Vista Service Pack 1

Interesting post about Microsoft backing off on their statements that they are releasing Windows Longhorn Server and Windows Vista SP1 at the same time. In November of last year, Bob Muglia, a senior vice president for server and tools at Microsoft, said that Windows Server Longhorn and Windows Vista Service Pack 1 would ship “simultaneously.” This would make lots of sense because it is one source code base for both products. But, when asked, Microsoft has backed away from this statement.

Windows Server is the nucleus of Microsoft’s enterprise strategy, around which all other products?even Windows client?revolve. Longhorn’s eventual release, which Microsoft claims will be later this year, will likely set off major software upgrades, including Office 2007 and Windows Vista.

The release date of either or both products is important to Microsoft and its customers. There is a huge opportunity for Microsoft if the Big Bang theory proves to be true. If there is a delay in the offing, Microsoft wouldn’t want to say. Businesses testing for Vista deployments might forestall the process.

Then there is the enormous impact on other products. Many IT organizations will choose to take one bitter pill, coordinated Exchange Server 2007, Longhorn Server, Office 2007 and Vista deployments around the same time, rather than many pills over time. Hence, the Big Bang, and all contingent on answering the question “When?” Source: Microsoft’s ‘Big Bang’ Is When?

Now they say it is too early to really give a release date for Vista’s service pack 1, etc, etc, I figure, if it is going to be later than that, they won’t tell until the last moment anyway, they don’t want those shops that are testing Windows Vista to stop what they are doing. I never really did agree with doing a bunch of critical apps all at once, they only upside is you aren’t constantly updating everyone’s computer with software rollouts of the new stuff, but it just seems crazy to do Exchange, the Domain servers, the clients at the same time, sounds like you are asking for trouble.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - April 27, 2007 at 3:38 am

Categories: Longhorn Server, Windows Vista   Tags: , , ,

Beware of User Created Service Packs

I posted earlier about a website owner rolling his own service pack 1 for Windows Vista, he is putting together all of the fixes and patches that have been released for far for Windows Vista and creating his own instead of waiting on Microsoft. Well, buyer beware, as always, if you download and install this “service pack” you could have trouble as it includes some patches that are intended to fix specific problems, and they may end up causing you problems you wouldn’t have had if you just updated using Windows Update.

With Vista freshly launched and company executives on record as saying that Vista is “high quality right out of the gate”, Microsoft appears less than thrilled with web site owner Ethan Allen’s decision to distribute Vista’s hot fixes and patches, rolling them into what he calls an SP1 Preview. This so-called preview was a collection of more than 100 hot fixes and patches for Vista. Selection, according to Allen, was determined based on information in Microsoft’s Knowledge Base, as well as information from an undisclosed “inside source.” Source: Microsoft: Beware of bogus Service Pack and hot fix sites

According to Ars Technica, this site has been posting stuff like this for years. My advice, just wait on the service pack from Microsoft and save the hassle for someone else.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - April 9, 2007 at 4:03 pm

Categories: Windows Vista   Tags: , ,