Windows Vista SP1 Officially Downloadable

Microsoft Corp. has released Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) to Windows Update today and the public as a separate download.

Interested Vista users can manually open Windows Update and download SP1. Users who have set Windows Update to automatically download updates will find the software automatically downloaded to their PCs in mid-April.

Users can download the stand-alone installation package directly instead of doing the update. The installer comes in at 434MB for the 32-bit version and 726MB for the 64-bit edition. Microsoft plans to roll out SP1 next month to users who have Windows Update set to automatically download and install fixes.

Late Monday, Microsoft inadvertently confirmed that SP1 would hit the update service on Tuesday; before that, however, others, including the Malaysian Web site, had correctly pegged March 18 as the delivery date.

Remember, there are prerequisits to installing SP1, so Windows Update will detect if a user has certain drivers that must first be updated before installing SP1. Until those users have the updated drivers in place, Windows Update won't offer SP1.

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