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Update to Windows 7 SP1 Frequently Asked Questions

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This document contains information on issues and solutions related to updating to the Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1).
This document contains information about issues, and their solutions, that have been reported on HP computers after the installation of Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1). This document will be updated as necessary with new concerns and information as they become available. You may bookmark this document and check back to it for the latest information.

What is SP1 and should I install it?

Microsoft Windows Windows 7 SP1 is a collection of the latest enhancements and improvements in the Windows 7 operating system for your computer. SP1 is a free update that all are encouraged to install to keep their computer operating efficiently.

Microsoft is the primary source of information on SP1 issues

When updating your computer to the Windows 7 SP1, the Microsoft web site should be your primary source for information on known issues . When solutions to these issues are developed, Microsoft will publish updates and work-around information.

Where can I find more information before I install SP1?

More information about Windows 7 SP1 can be found on the following web pages:

Should I download the SP1 update from a website or use Windows Update?

HP strongly recommends that you update to SP1 using Windows Update . By going through Windows Update, the application will validate Windows 7 SP1 and verify that all the required drivers and software are installed. If the computer is not currently ready, Windows Update will provide the required updates and fixes for drivers and other issues to ensure that the computer is ready for the SP1 update.
Beginning in mid-May 2011, SP1 will automatically download as a critical update on Windows 7-based computers that have automatic updating enabled. Using Windows Update is the easiest and most convenient way to update a Windows 7 computer.
There is no reason to install SP1 manually. First, that would bypass the Windows Update validation and correction process. Moreover, the full manual download file is very large. And, finally, you would have to search for and manually install all the required hardware drivers. Windows Update is programmed to do all that work automatically.

How do I install the Windows 7 SP1

Before you install SP1, it is a good idea to first run Windows Update and install any available, system-critical updates, then restart your computer. HP also recommends that you run HP Application Support after you finish running Windows Update.
There are two ways to obtain Windows 7 SP1 from Microsoft:
  • Highly Recommended - Use Windows Update to allows Windows 7 to automatically download and install the Service Pack.
  • Not Recommended - Manually download the full multi-language Service Pack from the Microsoft Download site and run the installer yourself.
Windows Update checks the computer for installed components and software, and then downloads only the required drivers and software. Windows Update also provides information if the computer has known software or hardware compatibility issues. Manually installing SP1 bypasses the software validation and correction process, and you might encounter problems as a result of drivers that have not been updated to work correctly with SP1.
To install SP1 using Windows Update:
  • Connect the computer to a working AC power supply.
  • Make sure the computer is connected to the Internet.
  • Exit all applications and save all files before starting the installation.
  • Click Start , type windows update in the search field, and then select Windows Update from the search results.
  • Click Check for updates , then click View available updates .
  • In the list, select Service Pack for Microsoft Windows (KB976932) , and then click Install .
    NOTE:If SP1 is not listed, Microsoft might have determined that the computer has software that is currently not compatible with SP1, or you might need to install some other updates before installing SP1.
  • Follow the on-screen instructions.
After the setup is complete, log into the computer to receive a message indicating if the update to Windows 7 SP1 was successful.
NOTE:If the Service Pack was downloaded from the Microsoft Download site, the installation might not contain all the latest or required files. Microsoft is constantly evaluating and improving the installation of the product. HP is also working to provide updated drivers through the HP Support Assistant and hp.com web site.

Why don’t I see SP1 in the Windows Update window?

SP1 is being distributed gradually by Microsoft, and will be available first in English, French, German, and Spanish. Other languages will become available over time. Continue to check back in Windows Update if you require support in other languages.
Before displaying the option to download SP1, Windows Update verifies that all of the required drivers and updates are installed on the computer. If the drivers are older than the specified version, Windows Update prompts you to install updated drivers to meet the current requirements.
You might need to run Windows Update and restart the computer multiple times before the Windows Update completes installing SP1. HP also recommends that you run the HP Support Assistant multiple times as you run the Windows Update.
Only when the Microsoft Windows Update has verified that the required updates are installed and working does it display the SP1 Update option. For more information on why your computer is not displaying SP1 in Windows Update, please refer to the Microsoft web site.

Will SP1 correct all the existing problems with my computer?

SP1 is an enhancement to the Windows 7 operating system and is not designed to solve all the potential problems that customers might have with the computer.
To resolve specific issues on your computer, make sure that all drivers and software are up-to-date. You should run the HP Support Assistant .

How do I run the HP Support Assistant to get all the important driver updates?

The HP Support Assistant will check your notebook and search for updated drivers and software. To get the latest version of HP Support Assistant, see HP Notebook PCs - Install Latest HP Support Assistant for Maximum Automated Support .

Do I have to update my BIOS?

Yes, it is advisable to update to the latest BIOS and apply all HP and Microsoft updated drivers and programs before installing SP1. Go to the HP Software & Driver Downloads page, enter the Product number for your computer, select Windows 7 operating system , and check for an updated BIOS. In some cases, if the BIOS is not updated before installing SP1, the computer might fail to start properly.

I did not update my BIOS and now the PC will not boot. What should I do?

If you encounter a problem after installing Windows 7 SP1, use a different computer to visit the Microsoft and the HP web sites and search for solutions that match the exact startup or no-boot conditions that you are experiencing.

Are there any known performance issues with SP1 that require updated drivers?

People who used Windows Update to check the computer for all the required drivers before upgrading to SP1, and who used the HP Support Assistant to check for updated HP Drivers after upgrading to SP1, have reported very few problems.
To check your computer and install the latest drivers:
  • Option 1 : Run the Windows Update to detect the following known issues and attempt to install updated drivers.
    Click Start , type windows update in the search field, and then select Windows Update from the search results.
  • Option 2 : Run the HP Support Assistant to locate updated HP drivers.
    Click Start , type support in the search field, and then select HP Support Assistant from the search results.
  • Option 3 : Manually locate and download the updated HP BIOS, drivers and software.
    Go to the HP Software & Driver Downloads page, enter the Product number for your computer in the search field and start the search. Then, on the product page, select the Windows 7 operating system , and check the listing for updated drivers.

Known installation and performance issues

When using Windows Update to check for and install Windows 7 service pack 1 (SP1), the service pack is unavailable for download.
  • Check for pending updates in Windows Update . In some cases, Windows 7 SP1 cannot be installed until previous updates are installed first.
  • Check to see if your computer uses an Intel graphics adapter, then make sure you are using the latest device drivers for it. Certain outdated Intel graphics adapter drivers can prevent Windows 7 SP1 from being downloaded and installed. Updating to the latest graphics adapter drivers can correct this.
    1. Click Start , type device manager in the search field, then select the Device Manager program from the search results list. Next, expand the Display Adapters category. A listing for an Intel device indicates that your notebook has an integrated Intel graphics adapter.
      Figure 1: Device manager
      Device manager with Display adapters selected
    2. Check www.hp.com for the latest version of the Intel graphics adapter device drivers for your model notebook. If an update is available, download and install it. See HP Notebook PCs - Locate and Install Updated BIOS, Drivers, and Software for instructions.
For more information on this issue, see the following Microsoft Support Site document: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2498452

I installed a Beta version of SP1, should I install the released version?

Some of the features and code used in earlier Beta versions are not needed in the final released verison. To avoid potential conflicts, if you had previously installed a Beta version of Windows 7 SP1, you MUST uninstall it before installing the released version of Windows 7 SP1.

How do I uninstall SP1?

You can uninstall the SP1 by using the Programs and Features menus in the Control Panel.
  1. Click Start , type programs in the search field, and then select Programs and Features from the search results.
  2. Click View installed updates in the left panel.
  3. Right-click Service Pack for Microsoft Windows , and then click Uninstall .

Why should I set a restore point?

Creating a Windows restore point saves a copy of all the system settings. It is a good idea to set a Windows Restore Point BEFORE you make any major changes to your computer. If there is a problem with the computer after making the change, you can always reset the system go back to the conditions just before you made change. Windows SP1 is well tested, but it is a good idea to create a restore point just in case you encounter a problem.
NOTE:Check the restore settings to make sure the restore point information is saved on the C: drive, never save it on the D:\Restore drive.

If I am unhappy with SP1 can I revert to a pre-SP1 condition by selecting an earlier Windows Restore Point?

Depending on conditions, yes! If you must revert to an earlier version, you should uninstall the service pack instead of just using a restore point. You should consider that when you installed a service pack, if there was a limited amount of free space, all previous restore points might have been deleted automatically to reclaim file storage space. In other words you may revert to a point just before the service pack was installed but not to any earlier conditions.
In an extreme case, you can restore the computer to the factory image. Restoring the computer erases all programs and information you have stored on the hard drive. If the recovery partition on the hard drive is not corrupted, you can use the Recovery Manager to restore the factory image. If the recovery partition is not available, you can use the recovery discs that you created to restore the factory image.

I received a message that I have to reactivate my PC. What should I do?

On some retail licensed computers, it might be necessary to reactivate the Windows 7 operating system after installing SP1. If, during the SP1 installation, a device driver is updated that is part of the computer signature, the computer will need to be reactivated. In this instance, you will be prompted to activate your original version of Windows 7 by connecting the computer to the internet and following the on-screen instructions from Microsoft.
NOTE:Read the Windows activation notice carefully. You are being asked to reactivate your original version of Windows 7 using the Product Key printed on the Windows tag on the bottom of your notebook. You are not being asked to purchase a new Product Key.