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Vista Countdown: 5 Days

Vista CountdownFive days until Windows Vista is unleashed on the general populace. Back when we did our Vista upgrade poll, about 15% of you said you wouldn't be upgrading to Vista until after they release the first service pack. Well, good news for you: Microsoft is already laying the groundwork for Vista SP1's release. CNet says Microsoft has outlined an update with minor enhancements along the same lines as Windows XP's SP1, rather than a large overhaul like XP's SP2. "We expect Windows Vista SP1 to be a standard service pack that will include security updates and hot fixes, as well as limited other changes focused on improving overall quality," a Microsoft rep told them. Sorry, folks, that means no WinFS for you. Again. Redmond says expects Vista SP2 to be ready "in a timeframe similar to that of service packs for previous versions of Windows." Windows XP's first service pack came out 11 months after the OS' initial release.

Vista's release is no cake walk for Microsoft, owing in part to the fact that the internet is a very different animal than it was the last time Microsoft released a new OS. We now have the marvel that is BitTorrent, and as you might imagine it's as much a thorn in Microsoft's side as it is the movie industry's. Computerworld has an interesting article on the piracy challenges Microsoft is facing even before Microsoft hits retail shelves. "The pirates that cracked early copies of Vista all sidestepped Microsoft's latest antipiracy technology, the Software Protection Platform," the article goes. "SPP is supposed to shut down any copy of Vista not registered to Microsoft over the Internet with a legitimate, paid-up license key within the first 30 days." Microsoft is trying to scare consumers off pirated copies of Vista with boogey-man stories of viruses and malware, which I'd say probably isn't too effective on the sorts of people who are in the habbit of trolling BitTorrent for pirated operating systems.

And speaking of malware, Webroot Software, makers of Spy Sweeper, have issued a press release warning of "potentially ineffective blocking capabilities in Windows Defender, slow definition updates, and weak anti-virus capabilities in the default anti-spyware and anti-virus components of Microsoft's Windows Vista operating system and Live OneCare suite." Are there really scary vulnerabilities in Vista and gaping holes in its anti-malware software? Well, probably, but what Webroot is doing here ain't public service. Webroot's CTO Gerhard Eschelbeck says the company wants to help cunsumers "make informed decisions about their computing security needs," which, if he has his way, means loads of them buying Spy Sweeper for their new Vista setups.

Tags: bittorrent, commercial, malware, microsoft, osupdates, piracy, security, service pack, ServicePack, sp1, vista, vistacountdown, windows, windows vista, WindowsVista