PC Community Ponders Delay of XP SP3 [UPDATED]

by , 3:55 PM EDT, March 26th, 2008

The PC blogosphere is pondering the implication of the endless delay in the final version of Windows XP SP3. Some are suggesting that the delay is a ploy to first firm up support for Vista and its SP1, according to ChannelWeb on Tuesday.

Many in the PC community has thought that the final release of Windows XP SP3 would be this week, but it hasn't happened. Instead, Microsoft made public a release candidate, RC2, only.

"I think Microsoft is withholding XP SP3 until all of the smoke has blown over with Vista SP1," said Patrick Derosier, co-owner of CPU Guys, a system Builder in Hanson, Mass. "They are dealing with a driver backlash from Vista SP1 which was released only last week."

Mr. Derosier's company is recommending that his customers stick with XP for now. "Vista still needs a lot more hardware support in the form of drivers from major vendors before we can recommend it," Mr. Derosier said. "You can tell there is a problem when a major Intel video driver on many chipsets has a problem."

While admitting that users will eventually make the change to Vista, as they did from Windows 2000 to XP, the process is taking time because of the major changes to Vista. "The thousands of the programs that have been written have all been written with certain rules in place," he added. "Those rules have drastically changed with the release of Vista. The industry is being lazy and just hasn't updated the software or the hardware to work with Vista."

Microsoft has said only that the final versions of SP3 will be released in the first half of 2008. Microsoft also told TMO that users will need to uninstall XP SP3 RC2 before installing the final version of SP3.

[This article was updated with additional information from Microsoft, for clarity, on RC2.]