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A curmudgeon's-eye view of desktop computing
Written by Daniel   
Tuesday, 27 November 2007 09:07

 Windows XP SP3 Widening the Gap vs. Vista.

Enterprise Desktop | Randall Kennedy Home
November 26, 2007

The (Post-SP1) Vista Verdict: Wait for Windows 7

Like many of the IT organizations I consult to, I've been waiting for the release of Service Pack 1 before passing final judgement on Windows Vista. Now that SP1 has nearly arrived (I've been working with the RC0 bits for about a week now), I think I'm ready to make my formal pronouncement:

For the vast majority of enterprise IT shops, Vista is NOT - and likely NEVER will be - the right choice for their immediate desktop computing needs.

The preceding conclusion is based on several factors, some of which I'll attempt to outline below:
Lack of Value - Ask most IT professionals why an enterprise-caliber Windows shop should upgrade from XP to Vista and you'll likely get a blank stare. The fact is that there's very little about Vista that is compelling to large IT organizations.

Yes, it's theoretically more secure "out of the box." However, no sane IT shop implements XP using the default security settings. They lock it down with layers of Group Policies and configuration management. And even with User Account Control (UAC) enabled, Vista is still vulnerable to external breaches.

Once you get beyond security the arguments become steadily less compelling. Integrated search? Limited to local storage. Aero? Cool, but hardly a compelling feature. DirectX 10? As an enterprise selling point? Are you kidding me? There's simply not enough "meat on the bone" to make this a compelling upgrade.

Poor Performance - I went easy on Vista's performance characteristics when it first came out. After all, it was a major new release and I've always been loathe to judge a Microsoft OS before the first batch of updates. However, as the "year of Vista" waxed and waned I became increasingly concerned by the myriad poor runtime experiences reported by early adopters. At the same time, I witnessed a growing trend in the IT media towards dismissing any and all complaints about Vista's performance as being from "fringe users" with "old hardware."    More   Comment in the Forum
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