Apr 14, 2008
Tip and Trick Editorial

Troubleshoot Why Vista SP1 Is Not Available or Offered for Installation in Windows Update or Automatic Updates

Windows Vista SP1Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) is now slowly been distributed and deployed to all Windows Vista users via Windows Update, Microsoft Update and Automatic Updates. Windows Vista SP1 contains important updates and enhancements that improve reliability, performance and stability of computer system running the operating system, and is recommended to install on every Windows Vista PC.

Windows Update or Automatic Update will be main delivery channel for majority of Windows Vista computers. Not all users will get the SP1 delivered at the same time, if you still hasn’t receive notifications in Windows Update or Microsoft Update about availability of Windows Vista SP1, or Automatic Updates hasn’t offered Windows Vista SP1 for installation on your system, there are several possible causes and corresponding resolutions for them, as explained in KB948343.

Cause 1: You are already running Windows Vista SP1

You probably need Windows Vista SP2 rather than SP1 in this case. You can check whether you’re running Windows Vista SP1 by right clicking on Computer in Start Menu, and then click Properties. If Windows Vista SP1 is installed, you will see that a reference to Windows Vista SP1 is displayed at the bottom of the Windows Edition section.

Cause 2: Windows Vista SP1 has not been released for the language of the language pack that you have installed

Microsoft has split the roll out of Windows Vista SP1 into two releases, with the first release of Windows Vista SP1 is available only in the following languages: English, French, German, Japanese and Spanish, which has been started to deliver via Windows Update, Microsoft Update and Automatic Update on April 8, 2008.

Windows Vista SP1 will only be offered to system language and any installed language packs are running these 5 languages during the phase of first release (Wave 0). The second release of Windows Vista SP1 with the remaining 31 languages is expected to be released on mid April, but the date of its appearance on Windows Update is yet to be certain.

Cause 3: Windows Service Pack Blocker Tool is used to block the delivery of Windows Vista SP1 from Automatic Updates or from Windows Update

Microsoft develops Windows Service Pack Blocker Tool for users who wants to delay or don’t want the installation of service pack on their computer. To ensure that the SP1 is not blocked from installing, verify that registry key HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate does not has key value name DoNotAllowSP, or its value doesn’t set to 1.

Cause 4: You tried to install Windows Vista SP1, and the installation failed with a known inconsistency in the file or registry structure

This error is now self-addressing with the release of KB947821, which use CheckSUR (Check for System Update Readiness) tool which will repair and correct a known inconsistency in the file system, incorrect manifests and files, or invalid registry date and replace with the current set of installed Windows components.

Cause 5: A hardware device driver or device software was problematic when you updated to Windows Vista SP1

The Windows Update service can detect the small set of device drivers and software that falls into this category. If you have the following list of device drivers installed, the Windows Update service will not offer Windows Vista SP1 until an update for the hardware device driver or the device software has been installed.

In fact, most of these older version of device drivers have updated versions which can be installed through Windows Update or download from manufacturer’s sites.

Audio drivers

Realtek AC’97

  • For x86-based computers: Alcxwdm.sys – version or earlier
  • For x64-based computers: Alcwdm64.sys – version or earlier


  • For x86-based computers: Sthda.sys – version 5.10.5762.0 or earlier
  • For x64-based computers: Sthda64.sys – version 5.10.5762.0 or earlier


  • For x86-based computers: Stwrt.sys – version 6.10.5511.0 or earlier
  • For x64-based computers: Stwrt64.sys – version 6.10.5511.0 or earlier

Creative Audigy

  • For x86-based and x64-based computers: Ctaud2k.sys – version or earlier
  • For x86-based computers: P17.sys – all versions (This was originally a Windows XP-based driver.)

Conexant HD Audio

  • For x86-based computers: Chdart.sys – version or earlier
  • For x64-based computers: Chdart64.sys – version or earlier

Biometric (Fingerprint) Sensors

  • AuthenTec Fingerprint Sensor with the Atswpdrv.sys driver file – version or earlier
  • UPEK Fingerprint Sensor with the Tcusb.sys driver file – version or earlier

Display drivers

Intel Display

  • For x86-based computers: Igdkmd32.sys – versions between and including driver and
  • For x64-based computers: Igdkmd64.sys – versions between and including driver and

Other drivers

Texas Instruments Smart Card Controller with the GTIPCI21.sys driver file – version or earlier

Sierra Wireless AirCard 580 with the Watcher.exe application – version or earlier (This application is located in the AirCard 580 Program Files folder.)

Symantec software driver for Symantec Endpoint Protection and for Symantec Network Access Control clients

  • For x86-based computers: Wgx.sys – versions 11.0.1000.1091 or earlier
  • For x64-based computers: Wgx64.sys – versions 11.0.1000.1091 or earlier

Cause 6: You have installed a prerelease version of Windows Vista SP1, and you must uninstall the prerelease version, or start with a new installation of Windows Vista

All beta and release candidate (RC) version of Widnwos Vista SP1 must be uninstalled. Pre-release version of the Windows Vista SP1 update can be uninstalled in View installed updates in Programs and Features. It’s listed as Service Pack for Microsoft Windows (KB936330).

If you have installed the full version of the prerelease of Windows Vista with SP1, you must upgrade to the final version of Windows Vista SP1, or you must perform a clean installation of the final version.

Cause 7: You used the third-party program vLite to configure the system, and you may have removed required system components that have to be available for Windows Vista SP1 to be installed

If you’re using vLite-customized Windows Vista DVD to install your system, you probably have to find a full version of Windows Vista with SP1 to upgrade it.

Cause 8: You see one or more updates for Windows Vista when you run Windows Update. However, you do not see Windows Vista SP1 listed

Windows Vista SP1 cannot be installed together with any other updates. It must be installed by itself. Therefore, if there are any pending updates on Windows Update, such as security updates, Windows Update will not offer Windows Vista SP1 until the updates are installed.

Alternatively, although not recommended, it’s possible to hide updates that you don’t want to install as an alternative resolution for Cause 8. However, all prerequisite updates for Windows Vista SP1 must be installed, i.e. KB935509 (only on Enterprise or Ultimate edition), KB938371 and KB937287 and/or KB949939.

Users who run a Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) environment are only affected by Causes 1 through 4 and by Cause 6.

If all solutions listed above for all causes fail to solve the not appearance of windows Vista SP1 in Windows Update and Automatic Updates, try to download and install with standalone Windows Vista SP1 update package instead.

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