Banks Starting to Look to Microsoft Vista

In February, Microsoft launched its much-anticipated Vista operating system (OS). According to the company, the successor to Windows XP sports several new features that are designed to increase productivity for Microsoft's clients -- including, of course, banks.

"XP [which was released in 2001] is pretty widely deployed in banks, from the lending side to product management, even in the back office," says Greg Haislip, managing director, banking, at Microsoft. "Vista will take over this role," he contends. However, there isn't a "financial services" version of Vista per se, Haislip notes, adding that Vista is a horizontal platform common across Microsoft's footprint.

Still, there are certain aspects of the OS that bankers can exploit to help improve their operations, specifically around security, mobile computing and search. For example, baked into Vista is encryption technology that leverages Microsoft's BitLocker solution. The OS can store centralized keys so users won't need to rebuild them if the data or hardware is compromised.

Further, Vista includes a new search feature that allows users to search different types of media on their computers. "Finding information fast is vital to banks," states Haislip. "This is true for lending officers, relationship managers, wealth managers and call centers."

View: Bank Systems & Technology

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22 Comments

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i agree ... i been using truecrypt for about 2 years pretty heavily now and it's rock solid stable and NEVER messed up even once on me!


I suppose many other organizations could use the bitlocker support especially on their laptops.

Last month it was revealed that the FBI tends to lose three or four laptops every month, either through theft or carelessness. But the FBI can feel better about itself knowing it's not the only agency with this problem. An audit of the National Nuclear Security Agency found that it's lost 20 desktop computers (how do you misplace those?) and that some of the computers it is using were not part of its official inventory. Since the NNSA's job is to safeguard the country's nuclear secrets, this news is not particularly comforting.

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20070403/090135.shtml

I wonder what Banks they are talking about, I have a few mates working in different UK based banks and they are still migrating to XP Service Pack 2 :laugh:

Vista is definately a long term plan, maybe after Vienna is released! :cheeky:

All I can say is - no effin way.

Any bank that has an IT department with even remotely positive IQ levels, would not deploy Vista on their network at this time.

EDIT: State 1 (ONE) GOOD REASON - why business users should upgrade. Please, just one. Nvm bugs and all that.

Quite.

And isn't Bitlocker an 'Ultimate Only' extra? Why the fsck would they want all the crap that goes with Ultimate, simply to get Bitlocker...

I don't see why a business would need Ultimate to use BitLocker when there are dedicated (better) programs for that task.

Chicane-UK said,
Quite.

And isn't Bitlocker an 'Ultimate Only' extra? Why the fsck would they want all the crap that goes with Ultimate, simply to get Bitlocker...

Windows Vista Enterprise has Bitlocker and its a better version than Vista Business for banks.

Doli said,

Windows Vista Enterprise has Bitlocker and its a better version than Vista Business for banks.

Someone allready mentioned this below, but again -> http://www.truecrypt.org/ - Free, open-source, true and tried disk encryption with plethora of options.

It's not that easy for banks.
I work for a bank in systemsmanagement and we only got XP last year.
The last NT4 servers will be removed in june 2007.

90% of the software that we use isn't Vista compliant. So we need to wait for manufactures to update their software...

And than my company needs to screw windows up so that normal system experts can't work with it

Interesting to see the shift of comments here.
When Vista was just released, It was all "OMG IT SUCKS DRIVERS SUCK DONT UPGRADE".
Now most of the comments are reversed. I wonder if thats related to newer Creative, nVidia, ATi etc drivers.

When Vista was just released, It was all "OMG IT SUCKS DRIVERS SUCK DONT UPGRADE".

Well, drivers were very much worse than now for a lot of hardware, and often not even existing back then in ~November. So that OMG speech was pretty sound advice, at least in many cases.

As for the current state of drivers? Well, both nVidia's and Creative's drivers are still lacking in many areas. My nVidia drivers (101.41) often cause Vista to restart the driver due to crashes, and it's starting to become a long time since their last non-beta drivers were released, for the kind of quality that they had.

Well it isn't as if a bank is going to see a dent in it's profits even if each one purchases £x million worth of licenses...

Vista works fine as it is. I haven't had any problems with it. I moved back to XP for a brief while because of bad drivers. But now all the software have updated Vista versions and drivers are available.

As soon SP1 comes out some people will say wait for SP2.

Express said,
Vista works fine as it is. I haven't had any problems with it. I moved back to XP for a brief while because of bad drivers. But now all the software have updated Vista versions and drivers are available.

As soon SP1 comes out some people will say wait for SP2.


I know that our IT division is waiting for SP2 before even touching it and I've talked with friends at other companies (including banks, insurance companies, manufacturing, etc) and no one has an IT area willing to make the jump at this time. Many companies aren't even close to finishing the upgrade to XP. The expense, risk, and exposure is enormous to upgrade to an OS that really doesn't have much over XP for the typical business user. Plus XP is stable and (at least in my department) there are no hardware or software compatibility/min requirement issues. So, where is the ROI? You can clearly understand why intelligent IT divisions are waiting.

They probably will, but not because people like you think that Vista isn't ready - instead it's because the banks IT staff have brains and realise that Vista is fine, but they'll have to wait until Vista Server / SP1 get released before they can migrate anyway.

More likely than the "superior intelligence" theory is that computers are leased (or otherwise have a limited useful lifespan). XP is "eXPired", according to some at Microsoft.

Natural progression with new equipment means that Vista will be the default OS sometime soon. They would be daft to plug their heads in the sand and ignore this.

mrmckeb said,
They probably will, but not because people like you think that Vista isn't ready - instead it's because the banks IT staff have brains and realise that Vista is fine, but they'll have to wait until Vista Server / SP1 get released before they can migrate anyway.

Or simply Microsoft *know* where the current problems are in Windows Vista, even before they released it, so they probably said to their big customers, 'hey, if you heavily rely on this, this and this feature, then you're best to wait till SP1 where it will be fixed" - the organisation will probably do some testing, which will take several months, on their internally written applications, make any changes necessary etc. Its a big move.

With that being said, Microsoft should have made a bigger push for .NET years ago, so then atleast most of the internally written applications were .NET ready before Windows Vista was released.