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Doug's Mailbag: To Migrate or Not To Migrate

Here are two readers' wildly different opinions on Windows 8:

We've been looking at Win 8 in the enterprise as part of our ongoing research agenda and we are coming to conclusion that Windows 8 (Enterprise) has no real compelling advantages over Win 7 -- and a number of disadvantages and risks for enterprises. In fact, our current advice is for enterprises with XP fleets to immediately begin migration to Win 7 (real pressure points are starting to build on the 50-60 percent of enterprises still on XP SOEs) and ignore Win 8. For organizations that have already made to move to Win 7, we recommend not spending any more effort or resources on examining a Win 8 upgrade.

I am publishing a research paper next week on this very issue. I have offered Microsoft a little time to counter my arguments before publishing.

One of the sticking points in my research is Microsoft's official 'we can't comment' on Downgrade Rights for OEM Win8. If licensing terms stay as they are, this would mean no more deployments of XP (outside of Software Assurance). My guess (guess only) it that Microsoft will not grant N-3 OEM licensing to keep XP alive...and I would not blame the company. In fact, I think Microsoft would be mad not to return to N-1 licensing.
-Joe

What? Me worry? Not a chance, Doug! Vista was NOT 'just a modest upgrade to XP,' and the extent to which that illusion was perpetrated by Microsoft led to Vista's apparent failure.

It wasn't really but it sure felt that way to a lot of people. Microsoft's blunders made a bad situation look much worse than it was, and Vista received an undeserved black eye.

Vista's 2007 public release represented the first Windows kernel re-write since Windows 2000. That is a long time.

Windows 7 and Windows 8 are still running on an enhanced version of that Vista kernel. That is why the transition to Windows 8 will be relatively painless. If an application ran under Vista, it will run on the Windows 8 desktop. Getting used to a Start Screen instead of a 'Start Menu' is not nearly as traumatic as the pundits have been predicted and, if you really do not want to upgrade from Windows 7, there is no need to. Windows 7 will be supported until 2020!

As for the absence of touch on existing notebooks, well that is just nonsense. I use a mouse with Windows 8 and I love it. I detest fingerprints on my screen so I would probably use a mouse on the Surface RT as well.
I couldn't be happier!
-Marc

Share your thoughts with the editors of this newsletter! Write to dbarney@redmondmag.com. Letters printed in this newsletter may be edited for length and clarity, and will be credited by first name only (we do NOT print last names or e-mail addresses).

Posted by Doug Barney on 08/22/2012 at 1:19 PM


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