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Operating Systems

Vista SP2 released: What you need to know

Windows Vista Service Pack 2 is out — here's what you need to know before applying it.

Your Vista machine is about to get a big fat update from Microsoft, so we thought you should probably know something about it.

(Credit: CBS Interactive)

It's the second service pack for Windows Vista, and contains all updates released since SP1 was released early last year. Most notably, SP2 adds Blu-ray disc-burning right into Windows Explorer, meaning files and folders can be dragged and dropped to Blu-ray discs just like DVDs and CDs can now. notes, however, that Windows DVD Maker does not benefit from the Blu-ray authoring capabilities given to the rest of Windows. For shame!

In non-fail news, the more recent version of Bluetooth — v2.1 — is now supported, which among other things makes pairing devices a little less of a hassle, and Windows Search 4.0 is bundled, making indexing and searching stuff on your computer faster than before. It will search your encrypted files too, but be sure to encrypt your search index if you enable this.

Other features include support for 64-bit Via CPUs, better handling of Wi-Fi when resuming from sleep, and apparently the RSS sidebar gadget has been fixed so it doesn't sporadically hang anymore.

It's available as a 348MB download now from Microsoft's download centre, and will be pushed out through Windows Update in late June. Note that you must have SP1 installed (get it here) before installing SP2, and if you installed the beta, uninstall that before downloading this final version.