Dear Aunty Spam: Love/Hate Relationship with WinXP SP1

Dear Aunty Spam,

Time and again I have heard and read that after one installs WinXP SP1, there is a 20% to 40% chance it will damage your computer in one way or another. I did install SP1 in my computer and it crashed. I had to use a floppy to get it started, and then I ran System Restore. It worked, but I am still out SP1, and it seems that SP1 is important to install. So, now what? I really like your blog. I’ve learned a lot from it. Thanks!


Dear Matthew,

Thank you for your kind words! Even though Aunty is not a Windows expert, but rather a spam expert, your lovely note moved me to do some research on your behalf.

The WinXP SP1 (Service Pack 1) was released in September of 2002. Aunty hopes that you have only recently installed your WinXP, and that you haven’t been having unprotected WinXP for a year and a half!

Shortly after the release of WinXP SP1, users started to complain that SP1 was making their computers run extremely slowly; many others complained that their systems started crashing, or refused to start at all, after installing SP1. So take heart, dear Matthew, you are not alone.

Fortunately for those of you who are unlucky enough to have an XP system which doesn’t play nice with SP1, Steve Gibson of Gibson Research developed XPdite, which patches the most horrific of the security holes which are supposed to be patched by SP1, without the nasty crashes. You can check out XPdite at

Now, go forth and patch your holes, and for gosh sakes make sure that you wear clean underwear in case you get into another accident!

Kissy kissy,

Aunty Spam

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