first_imgStarting this week, Microsoft will begin giving Windows 7 users who have yet to install Service Pack 1 a helpful push into the safer, more secure future. SP1 will start rolling out as an automatic update, and that’s a very good thing.Not only does Windows 7 Service Pack patch numerous flaws in the uber-popular OS, but it also bring loads of performance and stability tweaks. It’s also going to be a support requirement going forward come April 9, 2013. Microsoft wants to make sure everyone who’s using Windows 7 is running the version that’s in line for all the upcoming bug fixes. Critical security fixes, of course, will still be delivered to all Windows 7 users, not just those who welcome SP1 with open arms.There’s really no reason not to install the update, unless you’re a network administrator with very particular platform requirements for your in-house apps… or you happen to be running a copy of Windows that might not be 100% legal.Don’t be expecting to see any dramatic changes after you install, though. Microsoft’s official notes about what’s included in Windows 7 SP1 are thin on details and the few changes that do get mentioned aren’t very exciting. Better print output from the XPS viewer won’t make you want to raise your glass, but improved audio reliability over HDMI connections might at least be worth a golf clap if you’re going to be running SP1 on a media center computer.To make sure you’re ready to receive Microsoft’s SP1 push, just pop in to the Control Panel and click the Windows Update icon. If you’re feeling a bit geekier, hit services.msc from the search box and verify that the Windows Update service is running.last_img read more