Vista SP1

I know a large number of people have been holding out on upgrading to Vista until the first Service Pack is released, and that time might be coming before year’s end. According to unnamed sources that Mary Jo Foley has, a Beta version of Vista SP1 will be available mid-month…which is actually next week.

As expected this Service Pack should compensate for the search integration battle that Microsoft lost against Google. This would mean that Google could integrate their desktop search application into some of Vista’s search capabilities, which is something I don’t think Microsoft should have had to comply with since other operating systems don’t have to offer similar features. I guess that’s what you get for being the market leader.

So what is expected with SP1? When Vista was released Microsoft said that the first Service Pack to be released would not include a bunch of new features like the Windows XP Service Packs had. So here is what Mary Jo said we will see for Vista SP1:

  • Performance tweaks lessening the amount of time it takes to copy files and shut down Vista machines
  • Improved transfer performance and decreased CPU utilization via support for SD Advanced Direct Memory Access (DMA)
  • Support for ExFat, the Windows file format for flash memory storage and other consumer devices
  • Improvements to BitLocker Drive Encryption to allow not just encryption of the whole Vista volume, but also locally created data volumes
  • The ability to boot Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI) on an x64 machine
  • Improved success rate for firewalled MeetingSpace and Remote Assistance connections

I’m excited that they will be improving the time it takes to copy files because it can be excruciatingly slow at times. It’s mostly when copying large files where Vista has to calculate the long transfer time, but a fix for this is definitely needed. Now I am keeping my fingers crossed that Microsoft will add some additional features to UAC to make it a little less irritating. :)

The final version is then expected to be out by November, which gives Microsoft just a four-month window to work out all of the kinks. That’s about 10-months after the initial release of Vista, which sounds about right since XP SP1 was released 11-months after its debut.

Thanks to Richard over in the forum!