On the Windows Vista News blog, Mike Nash announced that Vista SP1 has gone RTM. This is great news, but there is a caveat, in that it won’t be available to download until "mid-March", since there are apparently issues with a small set of 3rd party device drivers that don’t follow Microsoft’s guidelines for device driver installation, so they have to be reinstalled after applying Vista SP1. Because of this, they are not making the bits available just yet.
This is very annoying. Why not just make the bits available on MSDN or TechNet, along with information in the release notes about the problem drivers?
For the past two years we have run performance benchmarks against Windows Server 2003, the Lone Server, and saw significant performance benefits with IIS7, File transfer using SMB2, and across multiple networking scenarios. I expect that customers will see significant improvements running Windows Server 2008 because we only install the binaries and services required for the specific role they deploy.
Here is some detail about the improvements in Vista SP1.