how about putting a small (slim) link just above the forums area
where one could get a direct [Download Here] link for relative
SQL Server service packs & hot fixes.
there could be a red-link in each part of the forums related to
that particular version... ie;
2005 has 2005 sp & hotfixes, 2000 has 2000 sp & hotfixes, 7.0 has theirs etc.
there's no place on the net that offers a direct down-load link to those files.
you usually have to swim through some other Microsoft pages to get to it. i'm
not saying to bypass all the kb articles etc, but rather the link brings you straight
to a downloads page where you can download it. maybe off to the side there's
a simple (slim) link that says 'learn more about this download' but generally
the page is just for downloads.
would be nice to get it directly, and would be helpful to windows it pro magazine
to require those who want the 'ease of access' to register with the site etc.
can you imagine in the future people talking about the latest patch or whatever,
and the natural answer to this was "...just go to sqlmag and download it"
BANG! problem solved.