The installation of SP3 using Windows Update, Step by Step:
1) I connected to the Windows Update site and installed the update available for Windows Update. Remember I started with a clean install of Windows SP2, therefore “Windows update” also needed to be brought up to date before I could continue. 2) Next I selected the ‘Custom’ option, thus bypassing the ‘Express’ mode. 3) Clicked on the option to install SP3. 4) The SP3 progress window opens and the “Downloading SP3 (KB936929)” starts. Immediately a temporary folder is created: C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\Download\66b1d8e81a20b4b541ab3e558f2fd638\ This temporary folder and a number of additional subfolders will be created and used during the “Downloading SP3” and “Verifying” phases. During the install process this folder will grow in size to a total of 628MB.
It was during one of the many times I repeated the SP3 install process that I noticed a change in the temporary folder name, from the more commonly used folder path: C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\Download\66b1d8e81a20b4b541ab3e558f2fd638\ To a one time occurrence show below: C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\Download\0d3b5d19cc06db007bbe6584808bfa9e\ So it is entirely possible that the folder name, which consist of a long string of numbers and letters may not be the same on your PC.
Also when the download is in progress a second folder is created: C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\Download\cf8ec753e88561d2ddb53e183dc05c3e\ This folder’s size starts out small, containing only a few files, but constantly varies in the amount of disk space consumed as the install process progresses, finally ending up taking up an additional 652MB. This subfolder is not deleted after SP3 has been installed and always had the same folder name every time I performed another test run. “cf8ec753e88561d2ddb53e183dc05c3e”
Where does that 66.9MB SP3 file get downloaded to and what is it named? When installing SP3, the Windows Update process identifies the size of this file as being approximately 66.9MB.
C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\Download\66b1d8e81……….d638\Download\ is where SP3 file is downloaded to. This is the file mentioned in the hard disk space requirements KB article. The progress window indicates this file will be 66.9MB in size but on the bare bones test PC the actual file size turned out to be 61MB, and is named: BIT1D.tmp
Just before the Download and Verification step completes (10 minutes start to completion, when using a 20Mbps Internet service provider) the “BIT1D.tmp” file is renamed to: WindowsXP-SP3-x86fre-USA-5512.psf.blob
Unless you are carefully monitoring the \66b1d8e81……d638\download\ folder you will never notice the name of this 66MB file. Why, because once the download is finished and the Wizard pops up, the “blob” file has already been deleted from:
C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\Download\66b1d8e81……d638\download\ and moved to: C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\Download\cf8ec753e88561d2ddb53e183dc05c3e \download\WindowsXP-SP3-x86fre-USA-5512.psf.blob