Network Security, Vulnerability Management

Microsoft delays release of latest XP service pack

Microsoft has delayed the release of Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3) because of a compatibility problem.

Microsoft has in recent days discovered a compatibility issue between its Dynamics Retail Management System, an electronic point-of-sale (POS) system for small- and mid-size retailers, and Windows XP SP3 and Vista SP1, the company said Tuesday.

Although the incompatibility issue would impact a rather small number of users -- and the fact that many POS systems use Windows XP Embedded, not the full version -- Microsoft has delayed releasing Windows XP SP3 via Windows Update or Microsoft Download Center until it has developed a filter to stop Retail Management System (RMS) customers from downloading the newest service pack.

Microsoft did not say how long it anticipated it would take to develop a fix for the incompatibility.

This is the latest in a series of delays to Windows XP SP3. Microsoft first postponed it in early 2006 until 2007, then once again until this year. This latest delay is to "make sure customers have the best possible experience," according to a post on Microsoft's Windows XP SP3 forum by Chris Keroack, release manager for Windows serviceability.

While Windows XP SP3 is not available for automatic download via Windows Update right now, the files it contains are available on the Windows Update servers for download. Microsoft has already released the update to manufacturers.

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