More Federal Agencies Delay Migration to Vista

Dennis Faas's picture

Last week we reported how the Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration imposed a moratorium on users migrating to Windows Vista, Internet Explorer 7 and Office 2007 citing no compelling reasons to upgrade at this time. Federal Computer Week is reporting that more Federal Agencies are delaying the migration to Windows Vista.

The Interior Department, including the Army and the Transportation Department are developing implementation policies and say they need to complete their testing of Vista before switching over from older working systems already in place.

A draft memo obtained by Federal Computer Week indicates that Interior officials want to tell bureau chief information officers and other IT managers that they should restrict the use of Windows Vista operating system to testing in controlled off-line environments but to begin preparing for its eventual deployment. The Defense Department issued a memo asking service members to avoid upgrading to Vista until the Air Force can finish analyzing how it will work with the Army's standard PC configuration.

"We are expecting the Army's Small Computer Program office to implement it as early as August," said Kevin Carroll, who leads the service's Program Executive Office for Enterprise Information Systems. "We will get a gold master copy from Microsoft, and we will give it to our manufacturers to test for us as well." He added that the Army has been testing Vista for the past year.

Microsoft officials said there is momentum in the federal sector to upgrade, despite the fact that several agencies are slow to upgrade.

"There are a significant number of agencies committed to deploying Vista in the near future," said Patrick Svenburg, Microsoft's Windows client solution specialist. "Most agencies have an enterprise agreement with Microsoft, and under that agreement, they have upgrade rights to software we produce," he said. Under such agreements, agencies pay no additional licensing fees to upgrade to Vista.

"They must do an assessment of whether they must update their hardware or not, but they get the software as a part of their agreement," he added.

Svenburg could not offer specific numbers about how many or which agencies are installing Vista citing company's policy not to disclose information about its federal government clients. He added that when it becomes a high enough priority, agencies will move to Vista in much the same way they moved to XP six years ago. For many, that might not be until 2008 or later.

Molly O'Neill, CIO at the Environmental Protection Agency, said she hasn't thought much about Vista, and a General Services Administration official said GSA doesn't plan to install Vista before 2008.

Scott Charbo, the Homeland Security Department's CIO, said he doesn't think DHS will be among the early adopters. Charbo said he hopes to complete the department's upgrade to Vista by 2009.

Visit Bill's Links and More for more great tips, just like this one!

Rate this article: 
No votes yet