Microsoft Releases Windows XP Service Pack 2
by Arie Slob
Hello Windows users,
This week Microsoft released Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) with Advanced Security Technologies to the Microsoft Download Web site. This free service pack delivers the latest security updates and innovations from Microsoft, establishes strong default security settings, and adds new proactive protection features that will help better safeguard computers from hackers, viruses and other security risks.
"Service Pack 2 is a significant step in delivering on our goal to help customers make their PCs better isolated and more resilient in the face of increasingly sophisticated attacks," said Bill Gates, chairman and chief software architect at Microsoft. "It is the result of sustained investments in innovation and extensive industry collaboration. It also reflects a broad recognition that as the security environment changes, the industry needs to work together to respond."
You can find the Release Notes for Windows XP SP2 on the Microsoft Knowledge Base. This article also contains links to a List of fixes included in Service Pack 2 for Windows XP.
Right now, SP2 is available only as a Network Installation (English/German only at present, other languages will follow). The Network installation includes all of the Windows XP SP2 files needed for installation on Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Professional and Windows XP Media Center Edition. This is an ideal download mechanism for IT professionals who require a downloadable copy of SP2 that they can use for network deployment.
Note: Microsoft does not recommend you to download this Network Installation if you are only updating a single computer. SP2 will be made available in an "Express Setup" later this month.
Microsoft is making SP2 available in stages: Last week, Microsoft's beta testers & Microsoft Development Network (MSDN) subscribers where given the chance to download SP2 first, on Monday, Microsoft made SP2 available for download from the Microsoft Download site. Next it will be made available via Automatic Update on the following schedule:
- Aug 10: release for machines running pre-release versions of SP2
- Aug 16: release for all other Windows XP versions
Later in August the software will be made available to Windows Update for interactive user installations. Microsoft is following this staggered release because of anticipated high demand. Microsoft estimates that well over 100 million users will update via Automatic Updates alone.
For support, see Microsoft's Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) Support Center
For more information on Slipstreaming SP2 in a current Windows XP install share see: Slipstreaming Windows XP Service Pack 2 and Create Bootable CD.
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