Installing Windows Vista SP1


Having downloaded Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) at work, I decided to install it on my machine at home. While SP1 has been released to manufacturing, it is not publicly released. I decided to document the process and post it here for others to see.

When you first run the installer for SP1 it performs a short setup routine, during which you are told to create backups of your files, and on the final screen that the install my take an hour or more.

A timeline of when each stage was performed:

0 minutes Started install
13 minutes Logs off
Screen shows “Configuring updates: Stage 2 of 3” (i believe it did stage 1 first, but it happened very quickly so didn’t see…)
14 minutes Machine reboots for the first time
15 minutes Screen shows “Configuring updates: Stage 3 of 3”
16 minutes Screen shows “Configuring updates”
19 1/2 minutes Screen shows “Installing Service Pack: Stage 1 of 3”
27 minutes Screen shows “Installing Service Pack: Stage 2 of 3”
This started extremely slowly (about 3% in 90 seconds) but then sped up and completed very quickly
30 minutes Machine reboots for the second time
32 minutes Screen shows “Installing Service Pack: Stage 3 of 3”
35 minutes Install finishes and i am presented with the usual login screen

(screenshots of the install follows)

This is the screen shown initially, after starting the install. I presume that this is extracting the necessary files to the hard disk.


These 2 screenshots show the two configuring stages (i missed stage 1 it was so quick!). These were followed by a screen simply saying “Configuring updates”.

Configure 2of3Configure 3of3configuring

After a reboot there were 3 stages of installing the service pack. No other information is given on what these stages do but each took 4-7 minutes to complete. Stage 2 was followed by a restart, Stage 3 happened after the machine came back on.
installing 1of3installing 2of3installing 3of3

After stage 3 had competed i was presented with the usual login screen. After logging in i was presented with the following message to inform me that i had successfully installed Service Pack 1.

sp1 finished

The whole process took 35 minutes from start to finish, i have yet to try and find any differences as a result of the Service Pack but if i find any worth mentioning i will post again.


2 thoughts on “Installing Windows Vista SP1

  1. AGFoster

    Mine has been stuck for an hour on “Installing Service Pack: ‘Stage 3 of 3 – 0% complete. Do not turn off your computer.” I tried to turn it off but couldn’t. I unplugged the charger to drain the battery rather than remove it. This is the sort of thing I came to expect from MS years ago. And this for an update whose purpose remains unspecified. Never was so much incompetence concentrated in so little space as Microsoft in Seattle. –AGF

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s