I’m a long-time fan of Microsoft watcher Mary-Jo Foley’s blog on ZDnet entitled “All about Microsoft.” It’s usually informative, sometimes entertaining, and often thought-provoking, as with her recent July 23 (2009) blog The Scarlet V: What’s a Vista business user to do? The blog itself raises some interesting points, but it’s the Talkback discussion — where users share their comments, views, and rants — that really makes this particular posting so interesting.
Foley reminds us of Microsoft’s changing stance on enterprise migration to Vista, as follows (the points recounted are hers, the paraphrasing mine):
- Until recently, MS told enterprises to keep migrating to Vista if said migration was underway; otherwise enterprises should skip Vista and go straight to Windows 7
- In May (2009) MS pretty much clammed up about Vista and hasn’t said much new about migrating, pro, con, or indifferent
This led MJF to Mike Angiulo, General Manager for Microsoft’s Planning and PC Ecosystem team (man, wouldn’t you love a title like that? to whom she posed the question about whether or not MS is abandoning its Vista users. Short version of his response: 1. No we’re not. 2. Lots of good stuff for Windows 7 will also work for Vista. FWIW, Dell is also taking a similar line, and the USAF is continuing its Vista deployment, with 90,000 desktops and notebooks already deployed, but is also moving as quickly as possible to get on the Windows 7 bandwagon.
The talkback section includes 150 postings as I write this and they make for fascinating reading. The attitudes span everything from “Vista sucks” and “Microsoft is the spawn of the devil” to “Vista is rock solid, and poses no problems for my organization” with many conceivable intermediate points of view also represented. The fragmented state of the Vista user base is clearly represented, and among those actually interested in using MS operating systems, I see a trend for most enterprise users to favor a move to Windows 7 as soon as it makes sense to do so. Some enterprise users say they won’t move until SP1 comes out, while others say they’ll wait for SP2. Microsoft already knows the road to widespread adoption is long and full of potholes. Let’s just hope that Windows 7 helps to improve road conditions rather than making them worse, as was an all-too-common perception for Vista until SP1 came along.
But only time will tell. Stay tuned!