Microsoft is currently rolling out its first Windows 7 service pack to users via the automated Windows Update and Download Center.
“First off – for those of you simply looking to update a single PC or your home PCs, we recommend using Windows Update instead of downloading the standalone installer (or Network Installation Package) from the Microsoft Download Center. Windows Update will provide the best installation experience for you,” explained Redmond rep Brandon LeBlanc.
“And before installing Windows 7 SP1, please backup your PC (and important files) to an external hard drive, DVD/CD or network location.”
LeBlanc emphasized that Windows 7 users should also check their PCs for malware and viruses before installing the service pack.
“You can download our free Microsoft Security Essentials to check for known malware and viruses or use security software from any of our partners.
“This is super important if your PC is infected; it could impact your installation of SP1 as well as future updates to your machine,” he added.
So, what will SP1 do for you?
Well, although there are few new features, the update is expected to offer improved stability and performance optimization.
“Microsoft has been working on this landmark update to Windows 7 for more than a year,” explained Sophos security expert Chester Wisniewski.
“While few enhancements have been made to Microsoft’s flagship product, stability and performance improvements abound.”
Wisniewski also noted that MS has shipped 796 bug fixes and security improvements to Windows 7 and Windows 2008 R2.
“This is a huge improvement and simplifies the distribution of these platforms for organizations looking to streamline their upgrades – [even though] many of these fixes have been available via Windows Update.”