Windows XP SP2 available for download

By Julio Franco ยท 23 replies
Aug 6, 2004
  1. Update: Windows XP Service Pack 2 Network Install download (thanks Didou).

    Available soon, Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) will bring users the latest security updates and innovations from Microsoft. It will establish stronger security settings that help defend against viruses, hackers, and worms and will provide unique new security features designed to make it easier for you to protect your PC.

    Microsoft has finally made available XP's Service Pack 2 this morning however the update is currently not available as a stand-alone download or through the Windows Update website, instead it's been made available through Automatic Updates and to beta testers only, we assume this has been done in order to control the popularity of the file somewhat.

    I wonder though, wouldn't it be about time bittorrent (or something similar) is used even by a big corporation like Microsoft to ease patch availability? Service Pack 2 weights in at 266mb.

    Here are a few useful links:
    Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) Support Center (thanks Rick).
    Order Windows XP Service Pack 2 on CD.

    More information from Activewin:
    Final testing is complete and at 10:08am this morning we signed off on build 2180 as Windows XP Service Pack 2, releasing it to manufacturing. The final build will be available to beta sites immediately at You will find both English and German versions there, Japanese will follow early next week. Next week the service pack will be available on the Microsoft Download Center for general download. In the interim we're making the update available to you via the beta web site. If you are running RC2, or any other build released to beta sites, we invite you to turn on Automatic Updates, and starting on August 10th your system will automatically download the express version of Windows XP SP2. For typical home users this is about a 75 MB download; for those on RC2 it should be less than 30 MB.
  2. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,168

    !!!!!That's half the size of the windows installation cd!!!!!

    And I thought SP1 was a pain to install! lol
  3. Strakian

    Strakian TS Rookie Posts: 136

    Thought I'd add this tidbit of info:

    Blizzard actually uses bittorrent as a means for patching WOW while it's being beta tested. I think they also did it as a means for downloading the initial Beta WOW Download, to help ease their server, and to see if it would be viable for future use.
  4. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    Microsoft has been pushing hard for users to have Automatic Updates enabled recently. I imagine this is probably an extension of that push.

    It's not forcing people to use Automatic Updates, but if you want SP2, they know you'll at least give it a shot.
  5. Goalie

    Goalie TS Booster Posts: 616

    The autoupdate downloader actually works decently in Windows, from what I've seen. Set it up properly, and you can tell it when you want to install a file, and reject a suggestion too. (sorta)

    MS should, though, set up a few "outside" agreements for DLing- their servers always get super bogged on SP releases. :|
  6. LaYkE

    LaYkE TS Rookie Posts: 16

    Yes but if your a gamer like myself automatic updates chew up your bandwidth. Having said that it's nice to have the choice. Personally I like the whole idea of SP2 being that size. It's chocked full of security updates + addons and also it will make the known exploits unknown again.... for a while.
  7. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    I downloaded SP2 on bit torrent... Only took an hour!

    So far so good.

    I also read that MS decided last minute to can the plans disabling updates for pirated cd-keys. Originally, SP2 supposedly would only install on legitimate installations. Iif you did manage to get it installed, WU would not allow updates.
  8. Goalie

    Goalie TS Booster Posts: 616

    I think this was done for two reasons- 1. Too many keys/key blocks to keep track of and the technical issues behind it, and 2. Space- I'm sure people are already riled about 266mb. Esp. over dialup.

    I read on CNN even that SP2 was free for even Pirated users. You just gotta wonder if there's an easter egg for such users, still....

    /me wouldn't be surprised some day if they create an SP which requires reactivation.

    Then distribute a non-activation veresion to corps, and create the same SP blackmarket as there are for corp installs.
  9. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,168

    surely with an xp product keygen out there, M$ would have a bit of a problem blocking all pirated keys anyway?
  10. Goalie

    Goalie TS Booster Posts: 616

    In this case, no- because the keygen that's used creates a subset of the full set of valid keys (Ie it's not the same algorithm). Because they know the subset, they've released new keygens to those who need it, that invalidate the pirated key numbers.

    Thus, when a key in the "pirated" subset comes in, they know it was run using an artificial keygen. I'm sure there are a few legit keys out there, and those can be proven to be good, so MS isn't worried about it.
  11. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,168

    thankyou. You larn something new every day :D
  12. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

  13. BrownPaper

    BrownPaper TS Rookie Posts: 407

  14. LaYkE

    LaYkE TS Rookie Posts: 16

    Thats true, but if you do what most companies/people do which is buy 1 XP cd and use it on every machine on the network. Unless your updating like crazy from multiple ip's outside your country they wont notice. For example I know ...a guy.. who is using a llegit key between about 6 mates. Thats where the real problem comes from not keygens which don't really work as explained above.
  15. Goalie

    Goalie TS Booster Posts: 616

    Really, that doesn't hurt business near as much.

    Keygens hurt due to the massive piracy/infringment/choose your term that it causes. Instead of 6 copies, you're now looking at 500, 5000, or more.

    Corp. editions hurt because it's heaven knows how many copies never activated. And many times people don't care- they get a pirated copy of windowds, and don't care that they can't patch it. Bad for the world, good for them (they think).

    This is another contributor to the massiveness of viruses these days. (sigh)
  16. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +8

    I've just downloaded and installed it, so far I don't notice much...
  17. Goalie

    Goalie TS Booster Posts: 616

    The most obvious change you see is the addition of a "Microsoft Security Center" which controls firewall, av, autoupdates, and so forth settings.

    The "new" firewall is nice, not too complex to use. Has an exemption based system like the rest of the world, and will pop up access warnings when it runs into a situation it's not familiar with. Not great, but it's better than absolutely nothing.

    As part of those security upgrades, it broke my home network settings- I could no longer double click the remote gateway's shortcut icon on the desktop to connect. All I had to do was rerun the network setup wizard, it took care of things.

    Supposedly there's a pop-up blocker built into this thing too, I have yet to touch that. I find it pretty sad/funny that it's there, and the description MS had put on it. Let's just say MS still doesn't get the point totally. But they have some valid points, and something is better than nothing. FWIW, the blocker is in Internet Properties, Privacy. You can get there any one of 50 ways, including the control panel, Tools->Options, using the Security Center to set internet options, then clicking privacy...

    The stability seems decent. I've yet to have a crash, but usually I need longer before I see one. The loadup of XP was slightly slower, to be expected, but I don't think it was an undue burden.

    I still just don't see where 266MB was needed for what was done.
  18. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    I consider that a good thing.
  19. young&wild

    young&wild TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 993

    I installed SP2 a couple of days ago to my two machines. So far not any problems at all. Everything seems to be fine.
  20. I noticed Filplanet has the SP2 for download. Thought that was kind of weird?
  21. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Just noticed when installing SPw2 on my home machine - one of the actions that the SP2 installer does is "Checking Product Key".

    They are watching!!!
  22. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +8

    I get IE crashing when I close the window now since SP2.

    I am using Firefox anyway, but this is pretty poor.
  23. Godataloss

    Godataloss TS Rookie Posts: 482

    Finally fired up Windows Media Center last night and was suprised to find that SP2 contained a huge update for it. Looks better. More userfriendly. And runs a 1000% better. I may even hook it back up in the living room as MS is dragging their feet releasing the xbox Media Center software.

    Anyone have any advice on running Powerstrip with a HDTV?
  24. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

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