Since you should have nothing to lose (installation of a pre-release
software should only be done on a system you are willing/able to format and
rebuild at a moments notice - virtual machines with a revert capability are
great for this) when trying to install the pre-release software (Windows XP
SP3 Release Candidate 2) simply format and install your test machine that
you are trying to install upon.
You might try to get into safe mode to use System Restore and/or Control
Panel --> Add or Remove Programs to remove the pre-release Windows XP SP3
Release Candidate 2 (Refresh I believe...)
Another option would be a cleanup of said test machine. Similar to one you
might do before installing any major service pack full release. The only
real difference is that being a test machine - it is not as important you
- Uninstall unnecessary software.
- Update the hardware drivers from the hardware manufacturer's support
- Use Disk Cleanup to clear all but the last restore point and to free up
some space not being used by much more than junk.
- Check for viruses/trojans/worms...
- Check for adware/spyware/malware...
- Use CHKDSK to check your hard disk drive for errors.
- Use DEFRAG to cleanup the drive a bit - tidy it up.
Then - once you have your test machine cleaned up - you could make a new
image of it (or however you plan to restore it each time you are done with
whatever tests you use it for) and you'd have a better testbed machine for
However - being a pre-release product - there really is not a direct support
option available. You have a few options, however:
Where you can download it in different languages OR download a script that
sets a registry key on your system so you can get Windows XP SP3 Release
Candidate 2 from the Windows Update web page directly.