Before Upgrading to Service Pack 3 for XP….

Here’s a great run through of things to consider/prepare for before upgrading your XP installation to Service Pack 3 (SP3). It was composed by “Lil’ Bambi” a friend and forum administrator at Scot Finnie’s Newsletter forums. I reproduce it here with her kind permission.
Please take a moment to have a look at her blog, Lil’ Bambi’s Musings.

OK, here’s some of the checklist items I look for on a computer prior to doing the SP3 update:

  1. Do you have the latest BIOS firmware, and motherboard drivers for your computer, as well as the latest drivers for network, video, sound, etc.?
  2. Does your computer have Intel or AMD/non-Intel based computer CPU(s)? If it has AMD/non-Intel CPU(s), you will need to get Update for Windows XP (KB953356) for AMD and other Non-Intel CPU based computers.
  3. Is your computer an HP computer, and/or have HP printers and/or scanners? If so, get all the HP updates first!
  4. Have you checked Microsoft’s web page, “Steps to take before you install Windows XP Service Pack 3” for any other items that might pertain to your hardware/software situation?
  5. Have you disabled Antivirus software if possible, closed down any anti-malware programs, closed down any video card, sound card, etc. items in the system tray; as well as closed down things like extraneous items in the Task Manager’s process list?

NOTE: Make sure it’s a fresh boot when you try to install and then close down all the extraneous system tray and Task Manager processes and antivirus software, etc. The point is you want as little running as possible when you are installing SP3 so nothing gets in its way during install.

NOTE 2: If you have broadband, you might consider downloading the distributable version of SP3 (very big download!!) and do the upgrade locally rather than going the Automatic Updates route. If you are still on dial up, maybe you can talk to a friend who has broadband to either download the distributable version and burn it to disk, or get the CD from Microsoft.

NOTE 3: If you are on wireless (as with any other updates), make sure you have a solid signal if you decide to use the Windows Update method of installing SP3.

(The thread also contains other tips for slipstreaming SP3 with your XP install CD)