Although Microsoft quietly delivered Windows Vista Service Pack 2 (SP2) to TechNet and MSDN subscribers last week, the company has still has not made the upgrade available to other users.
Three weeks ago, Microsoft announced it had completed work on Vista SP2, and had slapped a 'release to manufacturing' label on the code. At the time, although a Microsoft spokeswoman confirmed that Vista SP2 had been handed to computer makers - who would presumably install it on new PCs sold between now and when Windows 7 ships - she had no idea when TechNet and MSDN subscribers would be given the upgrade.
According to the TechNet download site, Microsoft posted Vista SP2 disk images for both the 32- and 64-bit versions last Friday, May 14. Microsoft has consistently only promised Vista SP2 before the end of the second quarter, which would mean a deadline before the end of June. A company spokeswoman repeated that today. "We don't have any additional information to share outside of what we've said previously - second quarter of 2009," she said in reply to questions about the company's silence on Vista's second service pack.
It's not surprising that Microsoft hasn't trumpeted Vista SP2's availability, or rushed it to the public. Even high-level executives have recently taken to putting Vista on a virtual trash heap.
Last week, for example, Bill Veghte, the senior vice president for Windows, told companies and organisations to drop Vista deployment plans "if you're just starting your testing" and instead "switch over and do your testing on the [Windows 7] Release Candidate." Microsoft delivered Windows 7 Release Candidate (RC) to the public on May 4, and may have it ready to sell as early as October.
Users now running Vista SP1 will see an offer to download and install SP2 on Windows Update at some point, Microsoft has said. Reports have speculated that Microsoft will flip the switch either next week or the first week of June.