Vista Still Not a Priority for Business

Dennis Faas's picture

A new study by Forrester Research shows that businesses that had been thinking of making a quick move to Microsoft Windows Vista seem to be doing an about-face and delaying deployment. In a report issued this week, Forrester analyst Benjamin Gray said "IT managers are finding themselves pulling back their initial Windows Vista deployment plans."

Forrester did note that it's not like most businesses are really going to skip over Vista. "For the vast majority of businesses, Windows Vista is a matter of when and how, not if. This is thanks in large part to Microsoft's dominance in the corporate client operating system market," wrote Gray.

In September 2006, Windows Client Product management general manager Brad Goldbert predicted that Vista would be put in use by twice as many businesses in the first year as Windows XP was in the first year after its release. According to IDC research firm, Windows XP usage was at 10 per cent after its first year in release. In September 2006, IDC analyst Al Gillen said "for them to do 20 percent in the first 12 months of [Vista] availability is almost impossible".

The Forrester study found that a lot of businesses are focused on making sure they move to Vista before support runs out on older operating systems. Windows 2000 will remain in extended support until July 2010, Windows XP until 2014.

Gray writes, "Microsoft's biggest competitor is Microsoft. Businesses have been, for the most part, running either Windows 2000 or Windows XP for the past four or five years. These operating systems are mature, thoroughly tested and have been proven 'good enough,' making the business case for Windows Vista even harder for a lot of companies."

Many businesses are not concerned about the uncertainty surrounding Vista SP1 and its release. It seems some will wait until it is released before attempting migration to Vista. Microsoft still hasn't said exactly when Vista SP1 will be released.

Despite the fact the Microsoft touted the ability of older programs to run smoothly on Vista, Gray notes that "application compatibility doesn't look as good as we had hoped." Other issues holding up migration to Vista involve hardware compatibility issues.

But, that's a whole other can of worms.

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