Service Pack 2 for Windows XP has leaked again, Neowin.net reports, and while The Reg has observed in the past that Microsoft code leaking is scarcely news, the site's suggestion that it looks pretty close to beta stage is maybe significant.
This build is missing most of the meat - Media Player 9, Windows Messenger 5/MSN Messenger6, DirectX 9, Movie Maker 2 and three degrees, so it's largely hotfixes, but some or all of this may change before launch, which is currently scheduled for some time this year.
Microsoft's XP Service Pack schedules are however currently a little up in the air as a consequence of the ongoing Sun litigation. The roadmap goes Service Pack SP1a (out already), a revised version of SP1 without Microsoft's VM. Then SP1b, with Sun's JRE, then finally SP2, which Microsoft has promised as a 'standard' service pack (the prior ones being more properly, we suppose, fiddling packs) with the JRE included.
Or not, depending. So you can fairly safely presume that SP2's content and release date will depend on the outcome of the appeal, rather than on whether it's "finished" or not. And probably the decision on what to roll in and what not will also depend on when the appeal's settled. ®
* Thanks to all the nice people who just pointed out SP1a is out already. You can stop pointing it out now, OK?