First Vista service pack beta scheduled for July

Late last month, word on the street was that the first service pack for Windows Vista might have been delayed until next year. Despite the rumors, it looks like SP1 is still on track for a release in 2007. According to anonymous sources quoted by ZDNet, Microsoft plans to deliver the first beta of Vista SP1 some time in the week of July 16, which starts next Monday. The sources suggest testing will go on for just four months, with the final release of Vista SP1 to roll out some time in November.

ZDNet says changes likely to make it into the upcoming service pack include speedier file copies and system shutdowns, SD Advanced Direct Memory Access support, ExFat flash file system support, BitLocker drive encryption improvements, Extensible Firmware Interface support for 64-bit PCs, and an “improved success rate” for MeetingSpace and Remote Assistance connections going through a firewall.

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