The first Beta for Windows 7 Service Pack 1 is now approximately a month away from launch. Microsoft has already confirmed officially that it will offer early adopters the chance to download and test drive Windows 7 SP1 Beta and Windows Server 2008 SP1 Beta by the end of July 2010. However, the Redmond-based company has started posting content designed to help testers take Windows 7 SP1 Beta out for a spin. The “Troubleshoot problems installing a service pack for Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2” from Windows Help is an illustrative example in this regard.

Microsoft is informing customers willing to jump the gun, download, install and run a pre-release copy of Windows 7 SP1 that they might not be able to go through with the deployment process. According to the software giant, failed installations could generate the following error message: “Installation was not successful.”

“The most common causes of this problem are: an inconsistency in the Windows Servicing Store. The Windows Servicing Store is a feature that is required to successfully install the service packs. [Or] a program on your computer, such as antivirus or antispyware programs, is interfering with the installation of the service pack,” the company explained.

The software giant is advising testers to attempt to solve the problem by leveraging the System Update Readiness Tool. This particular utility has been available for download for quite some time, and is designed specifically to resolve problems that might block the correct deployment of Windows updates and service packs. Once the System Update Readiness Tool is in place, testers should give Windows 7 SP1 another try. If the service pack installation continues to fail, there are a number of steps that testers can take, as detailed by Microsoft:

1. Close all programs, and then restart your computer.

2. After restarting, turn off all antivirus and antispyware programs that might run during the startup process. You can usually disable the program from the notification area, which is the area on the right side of the Windows taskbar. To disable a program from the notification area, right-click the program icon, and then click Close, Disable, Exit, or a similar option from the list.

3. As soon as you close the antivirus or the antispyware program, try to install the service pack again.

4. After you’ve installed the service pack, turn on all antivirus and antispyware programs.

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