Microsoft Releases XP SP3, Resumes Vista SP1

Windows Update

User can manually download and install XP SP3 today, and Microsoft will begin automatically distributing Windows XP SP3 through Automatic Updates "sometime in the next few months," according to a Tuesday blog post by an unnamed member of the Microsoft Update Product team.

Microsoft recommends that users wait for the automatic option because it "provides the best experience because the download will happen in the background," according to the blog post.

Last week, Microsoft delayed the release of XP SP3 and halted automatic downloads of Vista SP1 after discovering a compatibility issue between its Dynamics Retail Management System (RMS) and both service packs. RMS is Microsoft's SMB-focused retail chain management offering.

Now that Microsoft has installed filters to prevent users running RMS from seeing XP SP3 and Vista SP1 as available downloads from Windows Update, the vendor is allowing RMS-free users to obtain the service packs.

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Microsoft is testing a fix for the RMS issue and hopes to make it publicly available this month, a Microsoft spokesperson said in an email to ChannelWeb.

Last month, Microsoft revealed plans to delay the release of XP SP3 to MSDN and TechNet subscribers until May 2 due to high demand for Vista SP1, but reversed its decision the following day.