For Microsoft operating systems, Service Pack 1 is the natural evolution of the products from the RTM (release to manufacturing) milestone. Windows 7 is no exception to this rule, despite the company’s foray into standalone updates via Windows Update as an alternative to massive, cumulative service packs. And the wait is on for the first major upgrade to Microsoft’s latest Windows client and server platforms, with the software giant having offered no details on Windows 7 SP1 and Windows Server 2008 SP1. The Redmond company is reportedly planning to release the first service pack for Windows 7 at the end of 2010, namely in the last quarter of this year.
According to unnamed sources close to the software giant cited by TechARP, a release of Windows 7 SP1 in mid-2010 is nothing short of impossible. The Malaysian website points out that Microsoft is looking to September or October for possible release dates. However, at the same time, Windows 7 SP1 could be offered to the general public anytime in Q3 2010.
Microsoft traditionally releases the first service pack for a Windows client within approximately a year after the operating system hits store shelves. But there’s no established delivery timetable for customers to take into consideration, the actual release date varying from case to case. Windows 7 was RTM’d on July 22nd, and launched on October 22nd, 2009.
Since its commercial release, Windows 7 RTM proved a real success, with sales exploding to over 90 million licenses in just four months, making the product the fastest-selling operating system in history. It is clear that Windows 7 needs no SP1, certainly not in the same manner as Windows Vista did, however, business customers, which traditionally begin deployments of a new OS 12 to 18 months after its release, generally wait for SP1 to be delivered ahead of starting the migration.
In this context, a Q3 2010 Windows 7 SP1 release is within the normal Windows SP1 development and delivery plans for the software giant. Still, TechARP also reports that Microsoft was considering breaking the mold and releasing Windows 7 SP1 no less than 22 months after the General Availability deadline. The Redmond company has had a change of heart, apparently catalyzed by a few performance-impairing bugs that needed fixing, and will offer Windows 7 customers Service Pack 1 by the end of 2010.
Microsoft has yet to confirm any details concerning Windows 7 SP1. Another third-party source claims that Windows 7 SP1 continues to be in pre-Beta development stage, with the fully fledged Beta reportedly planned for mid-April 2010.