Windows 7 Service Pack 1 hits Windows Update

Just as scheduled, and less than two weeks after the release-to-manufacturing date, Microsoft has unleashed its first service pack for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 upon the general public. The standalone installer package, which weighs in at an elephantine 1,953.3MB, is available now from Microsoft’s Download Center.

As I pointed out earlier this month, Windows 7 SP1 doesn’t bring a whole lot to the table beside the collection of patches and updates released up to this point. However, there is support for Sandy Bridge’s Advanced Vector Extensions, and folks running Windows 7 as a client OS in a virtual machine under Windows Server 2008 R2 should be able to use RemoteFX and Dynamic Memory.

Microsoft offers a few tips to folks upgrading in this blog post:

  • Users are advised to install the service pack through Windows Update rather than grabbing the installer from the Microsoft Download Center. Windows Update should "provide the best installation experience."
  • Naturally, Microsoft suggests that users back up their computers before updating. You never know what might happen during a major OS update, after all…
  • Users should check they’ve got the latest drivers for their hardware.
  • Finally, from the "no duh" department, Microsoft suggests running a virus scan before installing the service pack. That’s probably good advice even if you’re not about to install a major OS update.

I just ran Windows Update, and Service Pack 1 is indeed showing up—but as a much smaller download than the file on Microsoft’s Download Center. The reported size is "73.6 MB – 892.6 MB." Those of us with bandwidth quotas will no doubt appreciate that option.

Comments closed
    • rcwatts
    • 9 years ago

    I put SP1 on 3 PCs and it went flawlessly.
    SP1 install also cleaned 9GB from my C: drive on one PC, didn’t check the others. . I’m guessing that was cleanup made possible by the fact that after SP1 you can’t remove individual updates, at leas not the old ones.
    One other thing. After SP1 is installed and booted .NET optimization runs and eats quite a bit of CPU for several minutes.
    I don’t notice any difference in boot speed or anything else.

    • BeowulfSchaeffer
    • 9 years ago

    I have been waiting to update from XP Pro. Seems like when this gets pushed out to hard media, I might pick up Win7.

    • anamericangod
    • 9 years ago

    Total failure here. “Critical components missing.” Standalone installer fails. Windows Update fails. Windows Update Upgrade Checker says nothing is wrong.

    Not sure if this is worth doing a clean install for…

      • derFunkenstein
      • 9 years ago

      Another comment said that some system cleaners apparently removed some of those “critical” components. So in your case it might take a full reinstall, which sucks.

        • Meadows
        • 9 years ago

        And this is why you don’t need that Ultra Registry Boostererer Nine Thousand from Majorgeeks.com that’s “guaranteed to speed up your PC”.

          • travbrad
          • 9 years ago

          To be fair most people (at least on TR) probably didn’t download such a program to “speed up their PC”, but to remove leftover driver stuff. I really question whether that’s necessary these days though. My drivers seem to work fine without even restarting Windows, let alone running registry “cleaners” and such. The last time I had issues that needed a registry cleaner was around 2002…going from one video card to another (the card still worked actually, just much slower than it should have been).

          There are some great registry tweaks to help customize the way Windows works (especially Windows Explorer), but you are better off actually understanding them and changing them manually IMO

    • ermo
    • 9 years ago

    It’d be interesting to read about how Microsoft prepares for such a large scale rollout (in terms of caching/distribution) and how much it costs them.

    With the amount of Windows 7 users using Windows Update as the update source for this, it can’t have been cheap.

    So if anyone has a link to an article on how MS rolls out stuff like this, please feel free to leave a link in a reply.

      • Meadows
      • 9 years ago

      They put it on a server and flip a switch. How do you think they “rolled out” XP and Vista service packs? People just download them and that’s it.

      Just because Apple sells service packs on store shelves doesn’t mean Microsoft also needs to waste good packaging.

        • Firestarter
        • 9 years ago

        Yeah I can’t imagine they’re hurting for bandwidth or infrastructure.

          • Palek
          • 9 years ago

          Well, actually, considering the size and geographical spread of their customer base, I’m pretty sure they’re outsourcing some of the file hosting.

          Akamai lists Microsoft as one of their customers. Maybe they’re involved in Windows Update file serving…

          [url<]http://www.akamai.com/html/customers/customer_list.html[/url<] Edit: this is pretty old, but according to The Register Microsoft.com runs off Akamai. [url<]http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/06/15/akamai_goes_postal/[/url<]

    • srg86
    • 9 years ago

    I’ve had quite a time getting SP1 on this laptop I’m using at he moment. It has the small system partition, then the normal windows partition. I’ve also installed openSUSE on it but didn’t realise that grub wasn’t configured to make the small system partition the active partition on boot.

    With the small system partition not set to active, the SP1 install can’t find it and fails.

    I set it to active in Disk Management and it corrupted the two logical drives in an extended partition which had all data files stored on them. SP1 then installed fine and Linux boots, but I’ve had to restore all the data files on this machine from backups.

    I’ve since seen a configuration option in Yast that turns on or off setting the small system partition active or not, and turned it to on. I do hope other distros like Ubuntu have this set by default.

    So, make sure the small 200MB system partition is active, or SP1 won’t install!!

    • south side sammy
    • 9 years ago

    I got one for you guys……… I’ve seen a couple of sites checking if games were any better with this service pack, but has anyone checked the boot up times ? My computer seems 6-10 seconds slower now. Vista all over again….

      • liquidsquid
      • 9 years ago

      It may need to re-cache your frequently used programs all over again after the service pack, so it may take a little time to realize any gains… or not.

      • Firestarter
      • 9 years ago

      Windows 7 ~= Vista SP2

      So yeah, it’s still Vista all over again.

        • UberGerbil
        • 9 years ago

        Well, technically it’s Vista.1
        ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • UberGerbil
      • 9 years ago

      That seems… unlikely. But, as liquidsquid said (echoing my first thought in response to this), the SP will change the entire system image, which probably causes Windows to throw away the entire boot cache for Superfetch. If you have a slowish HD, and thus were benefiting quite a bit from Superfetch, it’s possible that would cause a noticeable slowdown in boot performance… though 6-10 seconds seems excessive (unless we’re talking about a 4500rpm netbook drive or something). The good news is that if that is indeed the issue here, you should expect it to get better over time as Windows rebuilds the Superfetch cache.

      Of course if you’re just talking about the first couple of reboots after installing the SP, those are going to be slow anyway because Windows is still installing things and doing other housekeeping.

        • Ryu Connor
        • 9 years ago

        Readyboost is actually responsible for streamlining the boot process.

        That doesn’t change your underlying point. Information has to be collected.

          • UberGerbil
          • 9 years ago

          I thought ReadyBoost was purely the “caching on Flash” tech (ie SD cards and whatnot), paralleling the ReadyDisk hybrid disk tech, whereas Superfetch was the tech that pre-loads apps (and system files) into RAM. Not that it matters, beyond demonstrating that Microsoft has too many different trademarks for caching implementations. (Apple would lump all of them under BoostMagicโ„ข or something)

            • Ryu Connor
            • 9 years ago

            ReadyBoost does both actually (optimizes the boot and acts as a read oriented disk cache). ReadyBoost does work closely with SuperFetch, for instance it cannot do the disk caching role correctly without SuperFetch turned on as well.

            Pop into your Event Viewer > Applications and Services Logs > Microsoft > Windows > ReadyBoost > Operational

            You’ll find an informational event for every completed boot and defrag detailing that ReadyBoost has completed calculating a new boot plan.

            If you have ReadyBoost turned on as a disk cache you’ll also find informational events in that log detailing how well the cache is doing in terms of hits.

        • Meadows
        • 9 years ago

        We’re talking in excess of 10 seconds in my case, with two separate 7200 rpm drives, no less.
        The first time I rebooted after installing the service pack, I thought the PC might have been plowing the drives or something. 10 second longer boot time? Half of my startup programs didn’t even *respond* within 10 seconds.

        Took a minute or two to go away, I think, and I haven’t noticed it again yet considering I seldom reboot anyway.

          • Wintermane
          • 9 years ago

          That happened to me the first time I rebooted after the service pack.. I have since rebooted about 8 times as I do turn off my computer every time im done using it and each time it got faster until its now as fast as ever.. so ya it seems to have been superfetch being cleared and rebuilding.

      • potatochobit
      • 9 years ago

      just give it a few days
      its normal to have a bit of updating and installing after a large update
      restart ur computer everyday or so if you usually leave it on

      • djgandy
      • 9 years ago

      Oh no 6 more seconds. Shall I start a charity for your cause?

      • rcwatts
      • 9 years ago

      I don’t understand why more people don’t use Hibernation.
      It takes all the sting out of powering up. I turn my PC off at least once a day but only boot every couple of weeks.

    • Chrispy_
    • 9 years ago

    So how big is a windows install after this service pack? Some of us only have 80GB SSD’s, y’know….

      • Firestarter
      • 9 years ago

      I don’t know, but you can remove the uninstall files with this command in an admin prompt:

      dism /online /cleanup-image /spsuperseded

      edit: this reclaimed about 3GB for me just now, Win7 Prof x64. I guess it’s mainly just removing all those unnecessary uninstall files of all the old updates that SP1 replaced.

        • rcwatts
        • 9 years ago

        Good tip. DISM Trimmed 2.5 GB over and above the 1-2 GB that freed during the install.

      • rcwatts
      • 9 years ago

      On my laptop before starting the install of SP1 it had 98.3GB FREE when the install of SP1 was finished there were 108 GB FREE.
      On my main PC I have a 60GB SSD
      C: Drive. I didn’t notice the exact amount of additional FREE SPACE that I ended up with but it was at least 1-2GB.

      I attribute the increase in free space to cleanup done during the SP1 Install. For one thing Windows doesn’t maintain the ability to remove old updates after SP1. You can remove some individual updates but they’re the ones that have come out recently. I believe this is where most of space is freed.

      How much space it saves depends on how much housekeeping you’ve done on your own. On the PC that freed 9GB, I seldom run cleanup utilities but I run them all the time on my SSD drive because it so small. So SP1 bought me only a Gig or two.

    • NeXus 6
    • 9 years ago

    To clear up some free disk space, here’s a simple guide on how to delete the SP1 backup files if you have no reason to uninstall it:

    [url<]http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/122262-windows-7-sp1-disk-cleanup-tool.html[/url<] On my system it shows 640MB that can be recovered.

    • TravelMug
    • 9 years ago

    Just as an FYI for those with small(ish) SSDs out there, the x64 SP1 needs 8GB free space on the C:\ drive to install by default. At least if you are installing from the exe downloaded from MSDN or Technet. Don’t know about the Windows Update route.

    • Wintermane
    • 9 years ago

    Yaaa it worked for me!;/

    • Farting Bob
    • 9 years ago

    Just downloaded and installed via WU, very quick to download and install, i like a SP that doesnt cause headaches to install.

    • Cosmin.NET
    • 9 years ago

    using win 7 x64 ultimate. just installed sp1. works as it did. the drive space went down by ~1000mb after cleaning up the temp files. in the add/remove progs i only have a hand full of windows updates instead of tens. guess the windows update is better to use instead of package direct download.

    • ClickClick5
    • 9 years ago

    As expected: “Service Pack Can Not Continue”
    Reason: Critical system components are missing.

    Meh, no SP1 for me. I looked around and found that Driver Sweeper and other programs can cause this problem. I tried restoring the system files that driver sweeper removed and still nothing. The Microsoft help box for my problem says to reinstall Windows.

    *sips mountain dew*

    This only pushes me to move my system rebuild date closer.

      • Ryu Connor
      • 9 years ago

      Launch a command prompt with elevated priviledges and do a sfc /scannow

      Download and run the System Update Readiness Tool (http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=947821)

        • Flying Fox
        • 9 years ago

        A friend of mine was notified to install the Readiness Tool thing, but said he could not find an icon to launch it after install. How do you use that thing?

          • Ryu Connor
          • 9 years ago

          [url<]http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/108805-system-update-readiness-tool-checksur-log-file-analyzis.html[/url<]

          • JustAnEngineer
          • 9 years ago

          I downloaded it, then ran it from my download directory. It allowed SP1 to install through Windows Update on my Sandy Bridge machine. On my Phenom II system, I had to download the 900 MB stand alone x64 installer.

      • StuG
      • 9 years ago

      sorry to hear about your mountain dew ๐Ÿ™

        • ClickClick5
        • 9 years ago

        Yep. Two dews, and still no success installing the SP.
        Ready to reinstall this weekend.

      • potatochobit
      • 9 years ago

      try running a repair from the install disc

    • michael_d
    • 9 years ago

    Initially it seemed to have gotten stuck at 24% of 82.7MB. I rebooted computer re-downloaded, installed rebooted then CCC would not open I rebooted again. Now it works. I thinks it takes so long to download due to quantity of users hitting their servers.

      • crsh1976
      • 9 years ago

      I got the same issue tonight, but I let it run instead of canceling; it took a good half-hour between the download completion and installation on my end. I’m guessing there’s a slow recount of what updates are already installed to avoid downloading the full SP1 package, it’s 82ish MB but takes as long as downloading the whole thing.

        • Firestarter
        • 9 years ago

        I have resource monitor open right now at 24%. It’s definitely doing something, but not downloading.

          • NeXus 6
          • 9 years ago

          It appears to stall there and then will continue and speed up afterwards. For the most part, SP1 is pretty uneventful.

            • Firestarter
            • 9 years ago

            Yep, just rebooted and now I have SP1, apparently.

          • Saribro
          • 9 years ago

          It’s working out which updates you already have installed, and which still need to be downloaded, that’s why there’s no download progress and strong CPU activity from things like TrustedInstaller.

            • Firestarter
            • 9 years ago

            It’s poor form for a UI to make you think that a download is halted, they really should have split that up with multiple scrollbars like this:

            downloading service pack installer …… [scrollbar here] ….. done
            checking out yo system, bro [ scrollbar here] …. done
            downloading necessary stuff …
            updating that ‘thang …

            well you get the idea

    • toyota
    • 9 years ago

    good grief I am on attempt number 3 for this aggravating 82 mb dl.

      • Machupo
      • 9 years ago

      yep — gettin’ nothing… oh well

    • bcronce
    • 9 years ago

    Downloading en_windows_7_ultimate_with_sp1_x64_dvd_618240.iso from MSDN now

    3,166MB

    SHA1: 1693B6CB50B90D96FC3C04E4329604FEBA88CD5
    ISO/CRC: 8589EE18

      • anotherengineer
      • 9 years ago

      Nice. I don’t suppose you have a link that I could use??

      I don’t really feel like trying to slipstream SP1 into my full pro version.

    • rekta
    • 9 years ago

    That was a fast download. I just got done slip streaming it. Looks good.

    • UberGerbil
    • 9 years ago

    So this is the same 6.1.7601.17514 build that’s been around for seemingly forever. Should be well-tested, anyway.

    • alsoRun
    • 9 years ago

    I downloaded and installed within 10 minutes.

      • potatochobit
      • 9 years ago

      you, the man!
      mine didn’t take that long but it wasn’t a full patch since I keep it updated

      • Sunburn74
      • 9 years ago

      about the same for me. took absolutely no time and effort at all

      • bregensb
      • 9 years ago

      Yep not an issue – System booted started updating .NET Framwork 4…… (KB982670)
      Clean install Win7 Ultimate 64bit
      total time was 20 minutes

    • bdwilcox
    • 9 years ago

    A 2GB service pack. (shakes head) I hear they’re shipping SP2 on Blu-Ray.

      • bthylafh
      • 9 years ago

      It’s really not. That’s if you get the 32-bit and 64-bit versions, plus two different types of debugging symbols for both.

      The 32-bit one is a lot smaller, for some reason – it’s 537MB versus 903MB for 64-bit.

      • Ari Atari
      • 9 years ago

      I believe its 2 GB because it contains everything: the x64 and x86 versions and about 15 different language packs. If you only take what you need, it’s probably only about 800 MB.

        • cygnus1
        • 9 years ago

        the 2GB ISO contains all 3 supported CPU archs. X86, AMD64 and IA64 (itanium). For whatever reason the AMD64 version is nearly twice the size of the X86 or IA64 versions.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 9 years ago

          There’s no IA64 version. The ISO has exactly the individual files listed below it.

            • Ryu Connor
            • 9 years ago

            No, he’s right. The 1953MB ISO has the x86, x64, and ia64 copy of SP1. The file you see listed underneath the ISO in Cyril’s link are optional independent files you can manually download and install.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            So what you’re saying is that

            windows6.1-KB976932-X64.exe 903.2MB
            windows6.1-KB976932-X86.exe 537.8MB

            Are optional files that you may need even if you download the ISO?

            • Ryu Connor
            • 9 years ago

            No. Those are seperate indepdent non-ISO versions of SP1. You can get the ISO or you can get that. That’s all I meant by optional. I apologize, I lacked a better word at the time.

            In summary:

            You can download the ISO, which has x86, x64, and ia64
            or
            The debug Symbols for x86 or x64
            or
            The x64 SP1 by itself
            or
            The x86 SP1 by itself

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            Gotcha, couldn’t follow you before.

            • cygnus1
            • 9 years ago

            No. Neither of those are optional, and neither are required.

            If you have an existing system that’s up to date, use Windows update if possible. It will be a smaller download and should complete quicker. Windows update is almost always going to be quicker unless you need to do many, new Win7 or Server 2008 R2 builds using old media that doesn’t have the service pack included. In that situation grab the one appropriate for your CPU architecture ahead of time. That will save you bandwidth and overall time

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            I’m getting the full installer due to the error that WU encountered in another comment in this post. Hoping that will fix whatever was wrong for me. WU worked fine on both my home machines, though.

            • cygnus1
            • 9 years ago

            Correct. No normal user needs any of the symbol files. They are used in programming/development for debugging purposes and need to be updated to work with all the updated system binaries.

            • cygnus1
            • 9 years ago

            I’m not sure why MS didn’t bother to break out the IA64 version and require that you grab the ISO, but as others have pointed out it’s definitely there on the ISO.

          • Ryu Connor
          • 9 years ago

          Only Windows 7 has an x86 flavor
          Only Windows 2008 R2 has an ia64 flavor.

          x64 supports both Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2, hence the file size difference.

            • cygnus1
            • 9 years ago

            Ah, that makes sense.

      • Hallucinosis
      • 9 years ago

      The 2GB version contains the full updates for x86, x64, and Itanium… and will update fresh, unpatched versions of Windows 7/Server 2008 R2.

      So yeah, that’s why it’s so big. That’s only the MSDN/Technet download, not the Windows Update download.

      Directory of c:\installs\Microsoft\mu_windows_7_and_windows_server_2008_r2_sp1_x86_x64_dvd_619642

      02/16/2011 06:01 PM <DIR> .
      02/16/2011 06:01 PM <DIR> ..
      11/22/2010 06:49 PM 43 autorun.inf
      11/22/2010 06:49 PM 102,672 setup.exe
      11/22/2010 06:49 PM 536,437,704 windows6.1-KB976932-ia64.exe
      11/22/2010 06:49 PM 947,070,088 windows6.1-KB976932-X64.exe
      11/22/2010 06:49 PM 563,934,504 windows6.1-KB976932-x86.exe
      5 File(s) 2,047,545,011 bytes

      • seawolf1118
      • 9 years ago

      blu-ray… well i heard they are shipping SP2 on holographic data storage
      [url<]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holographic_data_storage[/url<]

      • burntham77
      • 9 years ago

      I bet that sounded much better in your head.

    • jdaven
    • 9 years ago

    “The reported size is “73.6 MB – 892.6 MB.” Those of us with bandwidth quotas will no doubt appreciate that option.”

    That’s not an option. It just means that you already have parts of the SP on your computer. Trying installing a fresh copy of Windows 7 on your PC and then check the file size.

      • Peffse
      • 9 years ago

      Let’s see…

      1) Full service pack download and install
      2) Partial download and install

      Looks like options to me.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 9 years ago

      No, what it means is that ideally it’ll download only the update files that it needs. The “option” is getting the smaller package on an already-updated machine.

    • 5150
    • 9 years ago

    Good download speeds, if this keeps up, I’ll have the 2GB file downloaded in a little over 8 minutes.

    • derFunkenstein
    • 9 years ago

    On a full-updated Win7 Pro x64 install, it’s downloading 87.2MB. Not bad.

      • PrincipalSkinner
      • 9 years ago

      It’s 60 or so for me with Win7 Pro 32.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 9 years ago

        Amusingly it actually failed. It “installed” and windows said it was successful but didn’t ask to reboot. I manually rebooted and it said the install was unsuccessful, so I’ll try again. GG MS.

          • potatochobit
          • 9 years ago

          this is definitely user error or a piracy issue
          if you dont apply the previous updates and restart though, this can happen sometimes

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            Yeah, that’s awesome, just assume I’m pirating. Thanks, dumbass. There’s no such thing as user error in Windows Update. You click “install” and that’s it.

            • potatochobit
            • 9 years ago

            you are incorrect, dumbass.
            you still need to apply the previous updates properly.
            just because you clicked download on them they are not installed and they are not applied
            and restart your computer once a day, you tard
            ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m just messing with you, you freaking limewire pirate downloader

            Edited 1,957 time(s). Last edit by me on Feb 22 at 03:33 PM.

            • Meadows
            • 9 years ago

            Good grief, how can you be that stupid?

            • potatochobit
            • 9 years ago

            he’s the only guy in the known universe where windows 7 does NOT work!
            yeah, I’m the stupid one
            seriously though, if you had a problem with a previous update you may not be able to continue a new update until it’s patched
            that makes sense with the new SP1, since it’s size is variable with the amount of patches you need

            • Meadows
            • 9 years ago

            What you say continues to be stupid.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            no, no, Meadows is right. You’re an idiot. I’m the only person ever to have some sort of Windows automated update fail?

            • NeXus 6
            • 9 years ago

            There was ONE update that was recommended before installing SP1, although I’m not sure it was actually needed to ensure an error-free SP1 install. Other than that, you could have left any other updates uninstalled and SP1 would have installed them.

            • Meadows
            • 9 years ago

            Precisely. And “restart your computer once a day”? Who does that anymore?

            • NeXus 6
            • 9 years ago

            Yeah, I only remember doing that back in the Win9x days. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I guess old habits die hard.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            Well, to bring a happy conclusion to my own personal story, the full installer installed fine.

            • Meadows
            • 9 years ago

            In your face, the WU version did it for me in 15 minutes from having pressed “Download”, also counting the reboots and the time it took to apply everything after the reboot.

            • potatochobit
            • 9 years ago

            In your face, I told you he had to restart the computer until all the patches were applied
            don’t think you’re cute because you use the word reboot instead of restart
            now do it once a day, like brushing your teeth, it prevents cavities

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            You didn’t even read my original “failure” comment because I said very clearly that I had rebooted.

            • Meadows
            • 9 years ago

            I do it once a week. I think.
            Maybe twice if there would be a power failure or a component upgrade, plus one for driver installs.

            Edit: I mean reboots, not toothbrushing. Eww.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            15 minutes was just downloading the 890MB file, another 15 or so to install everything. Not as painless as it should have been but not as bad as potatoretard makes it out to be. Maybe he can go tell the people who had “critical components missing” failures that they’re pirates or user errors.

      • phez
      • 9 years ago

      61.2mb here

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