Microsoft has recently released the previously closed trial Vista SP1 Release Candidate 1 as a publicly available "Refresh" trial, which you can download from here.
This service pack is a collection of all the cumulative bug fixes and product enhancements to date and SP1 for Vista represents substantial progress in the reliability and performance of Vista machines and should signal an uptake in the adoption rates for Vista across the business market.
Whilst we usually recommend waiting for the official releases of hotfixes and service packs; if you are in a position facing low performance or reliability, the service pack is available now should you wish to test.
The Windows Vista SP1 RC Refresh is time limited to June 30th 2008, although you can uninstall it and install the Vista SP1 release when it becomes available later this quarter.
I suspect that people will either stay on Windows XP SP3 or now move to Vista SP1 with a few consumers moving to Mac OS and businesses waiting for Vista SP1. Looking back in time, I remember troubles with Windows XP – an operating system which only came into demand a year or so after its release and was only taken up en-mass with the release of XP’s SP1.
For me, I’m rather hoping that Microsoft will finally see sense and get around to slipstreaming common SATA drivers onto the Windows Vista installation DVD ROM images and we can finally leave floppy disk drives to a well deserved retirement!
Come on Microsoft – release Vista SP1, Server 2008 and SQL 2008 already!