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Windows Operating Systems Software

Windows XP SP3 Released To Manufacturing 323

Posted by kdawson
from the last-in-a-distinguished-line dept.
mike_diack was one of many readers to send word that Windows XP SP3 been released to manufacturing. It will be available to OEMs and enterprise customers on April 29. Here is a summary of features and changes. The company will wait till "early summer" to enable SP3 downloads through Automatic Updates.
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Windows XP SP3 Released To Manufacturing

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  • by Joe The Dragon (967727) on Monday April 21, 2008 @08:33PM (#23153030)
    I will slipstream it and add the driver pack to my disks.

    http://driverpacks.net/DriverPacks/ [driverpacks.net]
    • by Gazzonyx (982402) on Monday April 21, 2008 @11:55PM (#23154482)
      Just wanted to say thanks; driverpacks.net has saved me so much time and hassle slipstreaming and integrating images for work. Between driverpack.net, RyanVM, WPI, nlite and msfn.org forums, I've saved countless hours. I would have spent all that time either collecting files, writing scripts, etc. or just going through a Dell 'clean' install (which, even at my fastest, takes about 3 hours to slim down and then install the company apps, and configure/add to domain). Your driver packs saved my bacon a few months ago when the Dell cd drive died and I had to use one off the shelf. I've also pulled raw infs from them on occasion when I've needed a driver that I didn't want to hunt down. Thank you!
  • by EmbeddedJanitor (597831) on Monday April 21, 2008 @08:36PM (#23153056)
    Remember when XP SP3 was impossible which was why everyone had to change to Vista?
  • by urbanriot (924981) on Monday April 21, 2008 @08:36PM (#23153058)
    OMG, I can't wait, only 8 more days until I can patch my system with SP3! So exciting... patches... wooo!!!
    • Don't get too excited. Remember the Microsoft motto: "Our customers are our beta testers." Remember that Microsoft is the Chief of Grief -- Let someone else have the pain. Wait until the bugs are found; SP3 version 3 may be the one you want.

      Windows XP was first released in 2001. Windows XP created severe problems for us until SP2 was released in 2004 [microsoft.com].

      So, Windows XP gave us 3 years of misery and 3 years of relative usefulness, but with extreme vulnerability to malware. And now Microsoft has declared th
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Windows 2000 was the last even slightly useful OS released from MS. As of XP with the activation shit all you get is trouble. I'm a developer and constantly change hardware configs or reinstall. The activation crap pisses me off to no end. I hate having to call Microsoft just because I added a stick of RAM or had to replace a dead hard-drive. Fucking bastards.
      • by bigstrat2003 (1058574) * on Monday April 21, 2008 @11:22PM (#23154266)

        Windows XP was first released in 2001. Windows XP created severe problems for us until SP2 was released in 2004.
        Unless you have something highly specific in mind, I call bullshit. I used XP SP1 for forever (SP2 broke all my games which used the Quake 3 engine, which was a good few at the time, for about six months to a year after it came out), and never had a single problem with it. I didn't use SP0, but XP SP1 was a damn good OS.
        • by toddestan (632714)
          Yeah, I don't get that either. SP2 broke all kinds of things, for that reason I still use XP SP1 on one of my machines. I don't have any issues with the machine at all, and it's perfectly stable. Though if you are already on SP2, you can probably move to SP3 pretty safely as it appears there aren't any huge changes in this release.
      • by rtb61 (674572)
        Not to forget the thousands of troll postings that are also released at the same time, this M$ release was great, I didn't have any problems, it installed properly and worked perfectly and improved security, stability and performance. All those people who are complaining have configured their computers incorrectly (it is always the customers fault) or/and the hardware manufacturers have failed to properly update their drivers as directed (why is it driver problems on Linux are Linux's fault and driver probl
    • No, you got it wrong. "Sweet Pickles is awesome." In fact, "Sweet Pickles is great!"

      (and if anyone catches the reference, you have my sympathy.)
  • Umm... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by calebt3 (1098475) on Monday April 21, 2008 @08:36PM (#23153060)
    Isn't it kinda late to be releasing to manufactures? How much more will they be able to use it?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by maxume (22995)
      Some customers like their service packs on shiny CD's. Those actually get made somewhere.
  • So much service! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Fluffeh (1273756) on Monday April 21, 2008 @08:37PM (#23153074)
    While I love the fact that my OS is being helped along and that they are keeping it up to date, I am still a little annoyed that the "follow up" OS is really still about as useful as a bucket full of random sized bolts.

    Though I love gaming, each month seems to bring me closer and closer to blowing away all three of my windows boxes and replacing them with a distro of Ubuntu or something similar. My lack of knowledge is the one thing keeping that at bay for now.

    When will Microsoft simply get the fact that a flashy desktop DOES NOT COMPENSATE FOR A SHITTY OS.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by aliquis (678370)
      Personally I wouldn't compare computer and console gaming, I like my RTS and Quake and neither works good on console I assume. Anyway, at a console you do indeed get gaming without a stupid OS ;D. So if there are any approriate time to mention console gaming this must be it.

      Regarding lack of knowledge have no fear, today there are so many more users, documentation, forums, and what not, and support for various things have improved and the desktops are better and so on. For just using Ubuntu I doubt you need
      • by tepples (727027)

        Anyway, at a console you do indeed get gaming without a stupid OS ;D.

        Not always. I can think of two ways that the Wii operating system is stupid. First, it requires all code to be signed, and Nintendo's code signing policy explicitly shuts out developers in home offices. Second, even for end users, you can't just insert the disc and go; you have to use the Wii Remote to point twice, even if you plan to use a GameCube controller to actually play the game (e.g. GCN games or Brawl).

        • by aliquis (678370)
          Ok, I didn't knew if they even used console hosted OSes or not. But I think that adding "stupid" before it covered the occasion where that may be. (But now when I type it I recall that the Xbox used some Windows CE-based/evolved OS didn't it?)

          I have never seen a Wii in reallife so I have no idea how it is. I don't know if "how to boot" should count as something OS deficient or not (even if it may indeed run on top of an OS in this case.)

          Thanks for the info anyway. If you now more about the OSes in consoles
    • by Bandman (86149) <bandman@NOsPAm.gmail.com> on Monday April 21, 2008 @09:13PM (#23153356) Homepage
      Wanna bet on whether or not it "accidently" breaks enough machines to convince people to upgrade?
    • Re:So much service! (Score:5, Informative)

      by pizpot (622748) on Monday April 21, 2008 @10:25PM (#23153846)
      How to do your Windows/Ubuntu PC, with 2 hardrives:

      drive 1,120GB (operating systems and windows programs)
      drive 2 200GB+ (linux data)

      partition drive 1 into four partitions of this size:

      1. 20G - for XP (fat32)
      2. 20G - for XP backup (fat32)
      3. 60G - for windows data (fat32)
      4. 20G - for ubuntu linux / (ext2)

      partition drive 2 into 2 partitions:
      1. 512 MB for linux swap
      2. the rest for linux /home (ext2)

      Google "hirens download" for a cd with partition and ghost programs.

      Install XP on drive 1 partition 1 and patch it up and install all your stuff. Put games in a folder called "programs" on part 3. Make sure you have a router firewall so XP not get hacked right away.

      Install Ubuntu linux (or whatever) to the 4th partition on drive 1, tell it to use the big partition on drive 2 as /home.

      Then ghost XP to partition 2 for when it goes to shit. When that happens, just ghost it back from 2 to 1: 5 minutes beats an hour or two.

      If you re-install windows, you will lose your boot menu that linux did for you. Just boot to the ubuntu cd, and click Apps, Terminal and then:
      grub
      find /boot/grub/stage1
      -->it replies with (hd0,3)
      root (hd0,3)
      setup (hd0)
      quit
      exit
      • by T-Bone-T (1048702)
        It took me hours and hours to research that. Thanks for putting it all in a simple step-by-step guide!
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by pizpot (622748)
          Your welcome. After you install XP, go to Add/Remove Software, Windows components, and remove everything there including Internet Explorer. Install Spybot, Zone Alarm, and maybe AVG. If you need IE to download Firefox, just Start,Run, iexplore. Don't do any email in windows, and as little internet as possible... preferably just multiplayer or minimal work stuff.

          Do email, credit cards, paypal etc in linux. After you install ubuntu 7.10, download automatix and run it. That fixes your sources. Then click Admin
      • by Valacosa (863657)

        I can vouch for the multiple partitions method, though my implementation is a bit extreme. Personally, I'm running out of drive letters.

        My own advice to add to the post above:
        - Round those 20GB partitions down to around 15GB or so, they'll still be big enough and it'll halve your cluster size.
        - There's actually no need to avoid NTFS anymore, as Ubuntu now has stable NTFS read-write support [ubuntuforums.org]. There are also drivers such that you can read/write ext3 partitions under Windows, but I haven't found one I lik

        • by pizpot (622748)
          > - Round those 20GB partitions down to around 15GB or so, they'll still be big enough and it'll halve your cluster size.

          Cool, and in fact, XP installs just fine into a 2GB partition as long as you put program installs elsewhere. :-)

          > There's actually no need to avoid NTFS anymore

          I agree, except it makes me type my password everytime I access a ntfs so I still avoid it. I figured out XP will give you the fat32 option as longer as it is a 30GB part or smaller. You can resizes it later. In fact, you can
      • by PopeRatzo (965947) *

        How to do your Windows/Ubuntu PC, with 2 hardrives:
        Thanks, pal.

        [note to self: renew /. subscription soon. I'm down to >500 pages.]
      • Re:So much service! (Score:5, Informative)

        by Minwee (522556) <dcr@neverwhen.org> on Tuesday April 22, 2008 @12:27AM (#23154704) Homepage

        Why are you formatting the first drive with FAT32? Do you just not like your data?

        Linux OSes including Ubuntu have had stable read/write support for NTFS [ntfs-3g.org] for over a year now. The only reason to subject yourself to FAT32 is if you plan on booting to Windows 98.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by compro01 (777531)
        why fat32? last time i checked, ntfs works just fine on ubuntu and ntfs is definetly more robust than fat32, in addition to doing away with that old annoying 4GB filesize limit.
    • by couchslug (175151)
      "My lack of knowledge is the one thing keeping that at bay for now."

      Install Linux on ONE of those boxes, and use the others to surf for info if you have problems with the Linux install. Want knowledge? Learn by doing.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      My lack of knowledge is the one thing keeping that at bay for now.
      I have at least one friend who gave up on Ubuntu on the grounds that it was too user friendly and didn't feel like real linux any more. Just something to think about.
    • Re:So much service! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by blindd0t (855876) on Tuesday April 22, 2008 @01:00AM (#23154896)

      Though I love gaming, each month seems to bring me closer and closer to blowing away all three of my windows boxes and replacing them with a distro of Ubuntu or something similar. My lack of knowledge is the one thing keeping that at bay for now.

      In case you didn't already know, the next version of Ubuntu comes out Thursday this week (April 24th 2008). Though I would recommend waiting until the initial rush is over and you can actually connect to one of the mirrors (this may take a few days to a week), this new version includes a Windows installer which allows you to install (and uninstall, if you so desire) Ubuntu without having to worry about partitions and other aspects of OS installation you might be uncomfortable with. Here's a link to where it's mentioned [ubuntu.com] on the Ubuntu site. :-)

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by CSMatt (1175471)
        Just use BitTorrent. I believe all of the mirrors are permanent seeds on the official torrents.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by giorgist (1208992)
      Hey that bucket is one of the most amazing things in nature. If you look long enough you will find a left handed square profile M4x.1" pitch bolt. Vista on the other hand is a bucket full of left handed square profile M4x.1" pitch bolts G
  • So if you paid full retail thinking you could drag XP with you when you upgrade your system...

    You're stuck. Kaching. Thanks for playing.

  • by Adam Zweimiller (710977) on Monday April 21, 2008 @08:40PM (#23153108) Homepage
    Windows XP SP3 rev. 5503 [mydigitallife.info]
  • April Fools Joke? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by naer_dinsul (784040)
    Is the fact that this was posted on April 1st a bad thing?
  • It will be available to OEMs and enterprise customers on April 29. ... The company will wait till "early summer" to enable SP3 downloads through Automatic Updates.

    So the bad guys, who can automatically generate exploits from updates in minutes [slashdot.org] will have MONTHS to generate and deploy their malware.

    Good job, Microsoft!
  • Will it need WGA to install?
  • Added "Features" (Score:5, Informative)

    by Shikaku (1129753) on Monday April 21, 2008 @08:58PM (#23153262)

    Windows XP SP3 also includes a small list of previously unavailable functionality, including NAP and an update of Windows Product Activation.
    I love the term "functionality" because it reminds me of the DRM things in Vista. Anyway, here's what they are adding besides all previous fixes:

    "Black Hole" Router Detection Windows XP SP3 includes improvements to black hole router detection (detecting routers that are silently discarding packets), turning it on by default.
    Seems nice

    Network Access Protection (NAP)
    More for enterprise/admins. See http://www.microsoft.com/technet/network/nap/napfaq.mspx [microsoft.com].

    Descriptive Security Options User Interface The Security Options control panel in Windows XP SP3 now has more descriptive text to explain settings and prevent incorrect settings configuration. Figure 1 shows an example of this new functionality.
    Cool I guess.

    Enhanced security for Administrator and Service policy entries In System Center Essentials for Windows XP SP3, Administrator and Service entries will be present by default on any new instance of policy. Additionally, the user interface for the Impersonate Client After Authentication user right will not be able to remove these settings.
    More admin stuff. I'll skip some of it from the PDF

    Windows Product Activation As in Windows Server 2003 SP2 and Windows Vista, users can now complete operating system installation without providing a product key during a full, integrated installation of Windows XP SP3. The operating system will prompt the user for a product key later as part of Genuine Advantage. As with previous service packs, no product key is requested or required when installing Windows XP SP3 using the update package available through Microsoft Update. Note The Windows Product Activation changes in Windows XP SP3 are not related to the Windows Vista Key Management Service (KMS). This update affects only new operating system installations from integrated source media. This update affects the installation media only and is not a change to how activation works in Windows XP.
    I'm not so sure about this though. WPA update... I wonder what Microsoft is sneak in on this.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      The product activation upgrade doesn't have any effect on patching existing systems - it's for slipstreamed media. Basically adds the feature to add the license key and activate (WGA) after installation instead of being prompted for it in the middle of the installation. They're not backporting the whole Vista activation / KMS / etc scheme to XP. If they did, their corporate customers would go nuts. Nobody wants to have to re-engineer XP deployment techniques at this point. And a bunch of corporate customers
  • by Linker3000 (626634) on Monday April 21, 2008 @09:14PM (#23153360) Journal
    Overview of Windows XP Service Pack 3.pdf - 428 KB Download
    Overview of Windows XP Service Pack 3.xps - 634 KB Download

  • Direct X 10 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Satanboy (253169) on Monday April 21, 2008 @09:19PM (#23153398)
    Still no directX 10.

    But at least I got some patches!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 21, 2008 @09:25PM (#23153440)
    ... does "early summer" mean we have to wait until next March?
  • Six months then. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by downundarob (184525) on Monday April 21, 2008 @09:43PM (#23153564)
    Early Summer!

    So somewhere around December then?

  • by ScottCooperDotNet (929575) on Monday April 21, 2008 @09:59PM (#23153654)
    As someone who's had to build many a Windows XP system since SP2 came out, it would be very handy if Microsoft offered a single file (similar to Windows 2000's Update Rollup) that has all patches since the last service pack. It would save me (or my company) time, and would save Microsoft on bandwidth.

    I'm aware there are third party ways to update fresh builds of XP in a more straightforward fashion (or integrate the updates in to the install disc), but where is mighty Microsoft on this? Where is the value here?

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by EXMSFT (935404)
      You're really installing Windows via winnt32 every time? You should just use Sysprep and keep your image up to date...
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Macfox (50100) *
        Ah sysprep vs winnt32...Don't forget the good old HAL issues, where you need 3 or 4 images to cover all architectures and MS refuses to support switching of HAL with one image, even though it's possible.

        Seriously... You should look at BDD with SMS. It uses a combo of winnt32 to setup your images and the create per architecture sysprep images.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 21, 2008 @10:12PM (#23153730)
      I'm aware there are third party ways to update fresh builds of XP in a more straightforward fashion (or integrate the updates in to the install disc), but where is mighty Microsoft on this? Where is the value here?

      Ummm, you don't need a third-party tool, microsoft provides lots of information on how to slipstream patches into xp before you install. This documentation has been available for years, and it is the same technique as win2000 and win2003 (dunno about vista).

      You can also script your install (search google for winnt.sif or unattend.txt) so you just turn on the system and come back in 30 minutes with everything installed the way you like it. Go look at www.msfn.org [msfn.org].
    • you should be useing WSUS to cut down on update bandwidth needs.
  • So for those of us who opted out of installing WGA will we be able to make use of SP3 without installing unnecessary trojans from MS?
  • here's the news

    Developing service packs for operating systems like Windows XP, which is nearing its end-of-sales period, is
    a standard practice, and Microsoft does this for the convenience of its customers and partners. Users no
    longer need to install three to four years worth of updates when installing Windows XP, and partners have a
    new, updated baseline on which to test their applications and hardware.

    Microsoft Kernel Mode Cryptographic Module (Fips.sys) is a FIPS 140-1
    Level 1â"compliant, general purpose, software-based, cryptographic
    module in the kernel mode level of the Windows operating system.

    In other words, not much new. There's a few new things (this crypto driver, a black-hole router blocker, network management stuff), but it's mostly a big ol' rollup so it's not a pain in the tush to install everything.

  • One question. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Allnighterking (74212) on Monday April 21, 2008 @10:40PM (#23153944) Homepage
    Will it make it out before the proposed "EOL" for XP in June?
  • what about drivers? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by sentientbrendan (316150) on Tuesday April 22, 2008 @12:33AM (#23154744)
    XP SP2 is ancient, and doesn't have tons of drivers for things as basic as SATA (for your harddrive), or new network interface cards. This makes win XP installation on newer machines a nightmare.

    Are they going to be selling win XP SP3 cd's with SP3 and drivers?

    As a side note, reading the download page and spec was pretty funny. They must have mentioned "XP SP3 doesn't contain new features" (it actually does contain new features if you read further) like 5 or 6 times. Someone is pretty scared that XP is going to kill Vista.

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