While Service Pack 1 for Windows is right on track for delivery by the end of March 2011, Microsoft is continuously kicking the operating system up a notch.

An illustrative example in this regard is KB 2454826, an update designed to boost the performance of Windows 7’s underlying graphics platform.

According to the Redmond company, in addition to speeding up the UX, the refresh is also designed to touch up the functionality associated with the graphics platform.

The software giant also revealed that enhancements have also been delivered in relation to XPS printing and the Media Foundation.

“This update contains the following new functionality, performance improvements, and solutions to issues: More »

Windows 7 Service Pack 1 is quite close to being released to manufacturing, reportedly. This piece of information comes from a third-party source, and was not confirmed by Microsoft in any way.

In fact, while it’s not 100% certain, it appears that Windows 7 SP1 could have already hit the RTM development milestone.

The Redmond company has been extremely quiet on the progress of the Windows 7 SP1 development process, and the evolution from Release Candidate to RTM makes no exception to this rule.

And while there were voices claiming that Windows 7 SP1 would RTM ahead of the end of 2010, the software giant was immovable when it came to refusing to share a timetable with the public. More »

Just ahead of the delivery of Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1) Release Candidate (RC), Microsoft has offered a refresh designed to kick up notch the Windows Media Center components of Windows 7.

As users know, Windows 7 Home Premium, Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate all contain Windows Media Center, and as such the update applies to all SKUs mentioned above.

Customers running the select editions of Windows 7 with extended media capabilities are now able to either manually download and install the Media Center refresh, or to have it delivered and deployed automatically through Windows Update.

The October 2010 Cumulative Update for Windows Media Center in Windows 7 includes the June 2010 Cumulative Update for Windows Media Center in Windows 7, as well as all other previously released updates for Media Center in Windows Vista’s successor. More »

Microsoft made available for download Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1) Release Candidate (RC) Build 6.1.7601.17105.100929-1730 and I thought I’d put together a small list of frequently asked questions (FAQ) and answers for testers.

1. What are the languages supported with Windows 7 SP1 RC?

Just as for the Beta, Windows 7 SP1 RC is available in English, French, German, Japanese and Spanish.

2. When did Microsoft complete SP1 RC?

The Build number indicates that the company signed off on the bits on September 29th, 2010.

3. Who can test Build 6.1.7601.17105.100929-1730?

Well,
Windows 7 SP1 RC is a public testing release, just as the Beta development milestone was. Still, this Build is designed for users with some experience in testing pre-release software, and not for end users to run day to day. More »

The Release Candidate for the first major upgrade to Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 is now available for download.

After the RC Escrow and the full RC Builds were leaked into the wild earlier this month, it’s now Microsoft’s turn to provide early adopters with the actual Windows 7 SP1 RC bits.

As was the case with the previous public development milestone of Windows 7 SP1 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, the Release Candidate Build is offered to testers through TechNet.

Early adopters can either register and get a guided experience when accessing the bits, or skip the registration process and grab the SP1 RC from the Microsoft Download Center.

“We are releasing the Release Candidate (RC) of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 (SP1) to the public,” revealed Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc. More »