On Wednesday, May 7th 2008, Microsoft released the long awaited Windows XP SP3. Almost immediately hundreds of users registered complaints ranging from complete crashes to looping reboots. Similar problems have accompanied previous service packs and are usually the result of conflicting software.
Now, a few days later, itâ€™s known that many of the reports are specific to HP Computers with AMD processors. Copies of Windows intended for Intel-based machines were used by OEMs on AMD-based computers. According to Microsoft the blame sits squarely on HP and possibly other OEMs
Jesper Johansson, a well respected MVP in Windows Security, has been helpful in identifying this problem and was quoted in a May 12th Article from Gregg Keizer of ComputerWorld. â€œThe problem is that HP, and possibly other OEMs, deploy the same image to Intel-based desktops that they do to AMD-based desktopsâ€. Many of us already know the problems associated with installing the wrong drivers on a system and this is exactly the same situation. Thankfully this problem is restricted to HP desktop models and does not affect their laptops.
In addition to the above problem there is a separate â€œno bootâ€ situation specific to the Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe motherboard, which also is designed for AMD processors. If you are seeing the error code: STOP:0x000000A5 after installing SP3 then you can use a USB flash drive as a temporary fix. Once youâ€™ve installed a USB flash drive or other secondary storage device you will be able to boot your computer. This certainly is not convenient but will help until the problem is properly solved.
A flurry of fixes immediately after releasing a major service pack is nothing new to Windows users. The unlimited configuration possibilities almost assure there will be some necessary adjustments. Microsoft seems to be reacting quickly this time, with updates coming every day since SP3s original release.
There is no doubt this problem will be rectified but PC Pitstop cannot recommend installing Windows XP SP3 at this time. Information on the issues addressed with this important update can be found in our recent article “Windows SP3: The Long Journey“.
For those who have already installed this service pack and are experiencing problems, we suggest referencing Microsoft Help and Support document KB888372 dated May 6th, 2008. In some cases the fix can be as easy as using your Add/Remove programs utility to remove the offending service pack. You can find assistance with SP3 removal from this Microsoft Support Document “How to remove Windows XP Service Pack 3 from your computer”. Keep checking with us for updates on this important service pack.