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How to download Windows XP SP3
This article was previously published under Q322389
You can help keep your computer current, safe, and working correctly by installing updates for your operating system. To make it easier to install Windows XP updates and fixes, Microsoft collects these files in service packs. Service packs help extend and update the functionality of your computer.
To make sure that your service pack installation runs smoothly, follow these steps:
- Determine whether your system is running a 32-bit version or 64-bit version of Windows. Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3) can be applied only to a 32-bit version of Windows. To figure out whether your system is 32-bit or 64-bit, click the following article number to go to the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
How to determine whether a computer is running a 32-bit version or 64-bit version of the Windows operating system
- Determine which service pack is currently installed on your computer. Before you install Windows XP SP3, you must already have Windows XP SP2 or Windows XP SP1a installed. To verify the version (including the service pack) of Windows that you are currently running, click Start, type winver in the Start Search box, and then press Enter to open an information window.
Note If you're still not sure about which service pack you have installed, you might want to ask someone for help, or you might want to click here
to contact Microsoft Customer Support Services.
To install a previous Windows XP service pack, use one of the following options:
- Download and install Windows XP SP3. For guidance, go to the "How to get Windows XP SP3" section, and use one of the following methods in that section:
- Manually download and install Windows XP SP3.
- Let us fix the problem automatically.
- Order Windows XP SP3 on a CD.
These service packs apply only to 32-bit versions of Windows XP. For more information about service packs for Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, click the following article number to go to the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
How to obtain the latest service pack for Windows Server 2003
How to get Windows XP SP3
Use any of the following methods to get the latest service pack:
- Manually download the service pack online.
- Turn on Automatic Updates so that your computer automatically downloads the latest service pack.
- Order the service pack on a CD.
Download the service pack manually
You can download the stand-alone Windows XP SP3 package from the following Microsoft Download Center page. Although this page says that the installation package is intended for IT professionals and developers, you can safely download and install this package. Important
These service packs apply only to 32-bit versions of Windows XP.
For more information about how to download Microsoft support files, click the following article number to go to the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
How to obtain Microsoft support files from online services
You can be assured that this file has been scanned for viruses. Microsoft uses the most current virus-detection software to scan files that are posted to the Download Center. The file is also stored on security-enhanced servers that help prevent any unauthorized changes to the file.
Turn on Automatic Updates
You can get Windows XP SP3 automatically if you turn on the Automatic Updates feature. To have us turn on Automatic Updates for you, go to the "Fix it for me" section. If you would rather turn on Automatic Updates yourself, go to the "Let me fix it myself" section.
Fix it for me
To fix the problem automatically, follow these steps:
- Click the Fix this problem link.
- In the File Download dialog box, click Run.
- Follow the steps in the wizard.
This wizard may be in English only. However, the automatic fix also works for other language versions of Windows. Additionally, if you are not on the computer that has the problem, you can save the automatic fix to a flash drive or CD, and then run the fix on the computer that has the problem.
Collapse this tableExpand this table
Let me fix it myself
To turn on Automatic Updates yourself, follow these steps:
Video: How to turn on Automatic Updates in Windows XP
- Cick Start.
- Type the following command in the Start Search box, and then press Enter:
- Click the Automatic Updates tab, and then click to select one of the options. We recommend that you select the Automatic (recommended) option, and then select the time that you want under Automatically download recommended updates for my computer and install them.
- Click OK.
Order Windows XP Service Pack 3 on a CD
To order Windows XP SP3 on a CD, click the appropriate link for your region:
Europe and Africa
For more information about what is fixed in Windows XP Service Pack 3, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
List of fixes that are included in Windows XP Service Pack 3
For more information about issues with Windows XP Service Pack 3, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
Information about Windows XP Service Pack 3
Article ID: 322389 - Last Review: April 18, 2013 - Revision: 52.0
- Microsoft Windows XP Professional
- Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
- Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 Update Rollup 2
- Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Edition
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