XP SP3 Refresh 2 and Vista SP1 RC Refresh 2 Join Windows 7

Windows XP Service Pack 3 Release Candidate Refresh 2 and Windows Vista Service Pack 1 Release Candidate Refresh 2 have joined Windows 7 on torrent trackers.

Pirated versions of Microsoft's software products and especially those developed under the Windows umbrella brand have a tradition of migrating on peer-to-peer file sharing networks. And Beta variants of the Windows operating system make no exception to this rule. And in this context, the second Refresh of the Release Candidate versions of XP SP3 and Vista SP1 have been leaked and are now available for download via BitTorrent clients, just like Windows 7.

With all the excitement orbiting around the first development release of Windows 7, namely Milestone 1 Ultimate edition Build version 6.1 (Build 6519.1.x86fre.winmain.071220-1525) ISO 6519.1.071220-1525, downloads claiming to be the next iteration of the Windows operating systems have begun popping out on various torrent trackers. According to reports from users that simply could not help it to jump the gun, all the Windows 7 torrents are actually ISO files containing everything but the next version of Windows.

But while fake zero byte ISO images are masquerading as the Windows 7 M1 release, the same is not the case with Vista SP1 and XP SP3. Vista SP1 RC Refresh 2 Build 6001.18000 is offered in a variety of ways, from a standalone installer to a slipstream installation. The registry script that Microsoft offers Connect users in order to tweak the Vista registry to identify, download and install Vista SP1 from Windows Update servers also leaked alongside torrents that claim to be the final version of the service pack. This is obviously not the case. Windows Vista SP1 is set to be released to manufacturing by the end of the first quarter of 2008, with all indications pointing to February for a more realistic RTM date.

And last but definitely not least, XP SP3 RC Refresh 2 Build 3282 was also leaked outside of the selected pool of 15,000 testers that it was released to through Connect, just as Vista SP1 RC Refresh 2. Apparently, the fact that all the Connect users involved in the testing process of Vista SP1 and XP SP3 are under a Microsoft Non Disclosure Agreement has done little to stop the actual leaking of the service packs. Testers are not supposed to share the update package, the resulting installation or even details with anyone.

"This is the self-extracting executable that contains the update package for Windows XP Service Pack 3 Release Candidate Refresh 2. Release documentation, including lists of fixes and known issues, are available in the downloads section of the Connect site. It is recommended that you apply this update package to an activated, genuine copy of Windows XP, in a test environment. As with any pre-release software, it is also recommended that you back up files and settings on your machine before applying this update package. You may apply this package to previous pre-release editions of Windows XP Service Pack 3 (e.g. the Release Candidate Refresh)," reads a fragment of the Microsoft official documentation that accompanied XP SP3 RC Refresh 2.

source: news.softpedia.com

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