Get ready for Vista and XP updates

Microsoft has been quietly readying several Service Packs for both Windows Vista and Windows XP. CNET Reviews has a full review of Vista SP1, while CNET News.com brings word of Service Pack 3 for Windows XP.

Microsoft has been quietly readying several Service Packs for its operating systems. Windows Vista SP1 has undergone several public release candidates, but CNET Reviews' Rob Vamosi got his hands on a copy of the real deal, not due out until March. The verdict? You'll have to click through to find out.

CNET News.com's Ina Fried got word of private beta testing of Windows XP SP3--that's right, I said Service Pack 3. Although it's nearly six months away from being ready, Microsoft promises that SP3 will contain the usual security fixes, but no word on whether it will introduce any major overhauls, like Windows XP SP2 did.

That could indicate Microsoft will not be abandoning its old workhorse anytime soon, or it could also be a last fling to keep Vista-haters happy until Redmond figures out what direction it wants to take its operating systems in, as they bleed market share to Apple's OS X and various Linux flavors.

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