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Windows 8: 4 Reasons Why You Won't Upgrade

Windows 8 is likely to be released in 2012, so as 2011 starts meandering to a close, it's worth looking at Microsoft's latest offering and considering whether or not it'll make it into our organizations. Here are four reasons I think organizations will give this new OS a miss:

  1. They're just now deploying Windows 7. Having skipped Vista, dealt with Windows XP for close to a decade and finally facing the end of Win XP support, organizations are in the midst of Win 7 deployment and planning. They're unlikely to do it again for Win 8. Now that we know we can get by with a 10-year-old, extended-support OS without the world ending, Win7 will probably stick around until 2020 at least.

  2. The Metro UI. Everyone I talk to either loves it or hates it -- much like the Ribbon introduction in Office 2007. Like the Ribbon, Metro penalizes experienced Windows users the most by moving common tasks to hard-to-find new places. A Win 8 deployment means potential user frustration, retraining, and lost productivity. Is it worth the risk?

  3. Insufficient new business-class features. Apart from the perennial "most secure version ever" promise, Windows 8 doesn't really offer a ton of must-have new business features. At least in in the preview we have so far, it seems heavily consumer-focused. Businesses are more inclined to go with the "if it ain't broke" mantra and skip any OS version that doesn't deliver significant, obvious advantages.

  4. Will it really run everything? Microsoft says Win 8 will be Win 7-compatible -- but most companies are still concerned about Win XP compatibility, ideally without using desktop virtualization. Win 8 is still too early to test for compatibility, but simply the concern will slow down a lot of business' interest and adoption.

This just refers to the client edition of Win 8; the Server operating system is a bit of a different situation and I'll write about that in an upcoming post. But regarding the client, what are your thoughts? Is Win8 something your organization will at least look at? Based on what you've seen so far, does it stand a chance in your organization?

Posted by Don Jones on 11/18/2011 at 1:14 PM


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