Microsoft has disclosed further information and clarification on the availability of Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) through Windows Update (WU) in an email to TechNet subscribers. It further confirms that SP1 RC Refresh2 (RCR2) is indeed RTM version of SP1, and hints that probably English version of Windows Vista can now get SP1 via Windows Update without any registry hack code, once the system is installed with all prerequisite updates.

Windows Vista SP1

  1. Before March 2008, only system installed with original Windows Vista media or image can get and download SP1 via Windows Update (WU).
  2. Beginning March, Windows Vista SP1 for English, French, Spanish, German and Japanese editions will be added to WU.
  3. The Windows Vista SP1 editions for remaining languages will be made available via WU gradually beginning April.
  4. Currently the 543M size files downloaded from WU by using registry hack script which has the build version of 6.0.6001.18000.080118-1840 is the SP1 RTM with all languages, but the current download will still be called SP1 RC Refresh 2.
  5. Currently, except by installing Windows Vista using official slipstreamed SP1 integrated Windows Vista, any other methods of installing SP1 will not change or alter the version of End User License Agreement (EULA).

Thus, whether a Windows Vista PC can now been offered the service pack is not depending on whether the system is a Home Basic, Home Premium, Business or Ultimate edition, instead, the service pack availability will only based on language of Vista.

According to the statement above, Windows Vista users who use English version installed with retail channel DVD, MSDN or Technet download can probably now download Service Pack 1 for Windows Vista from Windows Update without any hack, provided all two or three prerequisite hotfix packages KB937287, KB938371 and KB935509 (which WU offers first sequentially before SP1 is shown when using registry hack) are installed. Good news is Microsoft has distributing these SP1 prerequisites thru WU.

If you don’t manage to get WU to offer you Windows Vista SP1, add the SP1 RCR2 registry keys now to hack WU to detect and offer your system SP1.

For the general public, on March 18 2008, Microsoft has released Windows Vista SP1 for 5 core languages, namely English (US), French, German, Japanese, or Spanish (Traditional), while the Windows Vista SP1 for rest of the 36 languages setup package is released on April 14 is schedule to release early April. The distribution of SP1 via Windows Update will be more active comes mid April.