Microsoft will release the long-awaited Service Pack 4 (SP4) for Windows NT 4.0 later this week, according to sources familiar with the software vendor's plans.
As expected, Microsoft will meet its latest deadline by releasing the collection of bug fixes, updates, and new features in October. Microsoft officials would not comment.
SP4 will be the first NT service pack released in 1998. It was delayed for months, primarily because Microsoft moved developers from the project to work on NT 5.0 beta releases.
"I'd personally like to see some mention of the rather annoying and apparently mostly artificial delays placed on SP4, in order to get NT 5.0 Beta 2 out," one frustrated NT user said.
"Service packs for existing operating systems, to my mind, should not find their staff poached for development of future versions."
The service pack, which will be available for download from Microsoft's Web site (http://www.microsoft.com), will include euro currency support; year-2000 fixes; a Security Configuration Editor, originally targeted for NT 5.0; the Internet Group Management Protocol. Also included will be fixes for pieces of the NT 4.0 Option Pack, such as Microsoft Transaction Server, Microsoft Message Queue Server (MSMQ), Internet Information Server 4.0, and Certificate Server; support for Web-based Enterprise Management.