The first quasi-public post-Beta release of Windows Vista Service Pack 2 is available for download after having been leaked to popular BitTorrent websites. Microsoft is making headway with the development of the second Service Pack for Windows Vista, albeit Windows 7 Beta is inherently stealing all the limelight. At the end of January 2009, the Redmond company confirmed that it moved past the Beta milestone with Vista SP2 and that it has delivered to a select pool of testers a superseding build. However, Vista SP2 is not quite at the Release Candidate stage, as testers got the bits for an interim development milestone leading to RC, namely Build 6002.16659.090114-1728
Windows Vista SP2 Build 6002.16659.090114-1728 was labeled as RC-Escrow and the bits are up for grabs in the wild from torrent trackers, as Microsoft has not offered the release to the public. As it was the case with previous development milestones, the RC-Escrow is focused not only on the client but also on the server flavor of the operating system, the binaries offering Windows Server 2008 SP2 RC-Escrow alongside Vista SP2 RC-Escrow. Windows Vista Service Pack 2, v.275 has been leaked in both 32-bit and 64-bit variants and comes in several localized versions designed to integrate with Vista SP1 and Windows Server 2008 RTM/SP1 copies in English, Spanish, German, French and Japanese.
At the same time, the downloads of leaked Windows Vista SP2 RC-Escrow Build 6002.16659.090114-1728 bits offer the service pack in the packages released by Microsoft. In this context, Vista SP2 RC-Escrow is available as both a standalone download and slipstreamed ISO images containing Vista SP1 bits plus SP2 on top, integrated with the operating system. Microsoft is also offering the RC-Escrow builds of Vista SP2 and Windows Server 2008 SP2 through Windows Update, but users have to execute a script designed to tweak the registry so that the operating systems are capable of detecting, downloading and installing SP2 from WU servers.
The software giant has so far failed to confirm an official delivery timetable for Vista SP2. Microsoft only indicated that it expected to deliver the second service pack for Vista and Windows Server 2008 by mid-2009. A leaked product road-map
revealed that the company was looking at March 2009 as a deadline for the fully-fledged Release Candidate, with the RTM (release to manufacturing) deadline expected in April.
Windows Vista Service Pack 2 (SP2) Beta is available for download here