Microsoft may be shooting itself in the foot with the third service pack for Windows XP. Computer World reports beta testers of Windows XP SP3 are seeing performance boosts of 10% of applications like Office:
Devil Mountain Software, which earlier in the week claimed Windows Vista SP1 was no faster than the original, repeated some of the same tests on the release candidate of Windows XP SP3, the service pack recently issued to about 15,000 testers.
"We were pleasantly surprised to discover that Windows XP SP3 delivers a measurable performance boost to this aging desktop OS," said Craig Barth, Devil Mountain's chief technology officer, in a post to a company blog Friday.
Devil Mountain ran its OfficeBench suite of performance benchmarks on a laptop equipped with Office 2007, Microsoft's latest application suite. The notebook -- the same unit used in the Vista/Vista SP1 tests earlier -- featured a 2.0GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor and 1GB of memory. The results reported a 10% speed increase under XP SP3 when compared to SP2, the service pack released in 2004.
"Since SP3 was supposed to be mostly a bug-fix/patch consolidation release, the unexpected speed boost comes as a nice bonus," Barth said. "In fact, XP SP3 is shaping up to be a 'must-have' update for the majority of users who are still running Redmond's not-so-latest and greatest desktop OS."