A few weeks ago, I went ahead and installed the RC of Vista Service Pack 1. Why, you ask? Because to me, software is like free hardware. Since Service Pack 2 of XP, Microsoft has distributed it's Service Packs via a small initial download that contains just enough to execute a scan of your system to figure out what components you'll need for the update. After building a list of which components you need, it downloads what you need locally, then executes that list of updates.
Ultimately, this is a step forward in the installation experience for the user, and as the Windows operating systems start packing more and more functionality in, I can understand that all service packs will be getting bigger and bigger.
What bothers me is the license agreement acceptance is halfway through the install. You can't just kick it off before you go to bed, you've got to kick it off, wait for the half hour scan, wait for the half hour download, and then accept the license agreement. Lame.
Is there a reason that this can't be at the beginning of the install? Does the license agreement change, depending on which components it needs to download and install?
I noticed that Service Pack 1 for Visual Studio 2005 was the same way, except it would ask you if you wanted to install 15 minutes after you double clicked the executable.
I'm pretty surprised that someone over there in Redmond hasn't barked about this issue. Seems like it would be something that would bother a lot of people.