Microsoft recommends upgrade to Vista before Windows 7

As Windows 7 gets ready for its next release, it could be already hurting Vista's remaining chances with businesses and organizations. Microsoft has started to push Vista to its corporate customers. Earlier this month Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer warned companies to upgrade from XP. Following Ballmer, Gavriella Schuster, Senior Director in Windows Product Management group urges businesses to upgrade to Windows Vista now, even if they plan to move to Windows 7 when it ships.

Schuster argues that the benefits of Vista upgrade would outweigh the costs of upgrading to Vista and urges companies to start Windows 7 Beta testing as soon as possible.

  • Companies that skip Vista are at risk of their software vendors halting support to Windows XP before Windows 7 arrives.
  • Due to the similarity in code base for Vista and Windows 7, companies which upgrade to Vista now can enjoy a smoother upgrade to Windows 7 compared with the risky move straight from XP to Windows 7.
  • Deploying a new PC with Vista is cheaper than installing XP on it and then later move it to Windows 7.
  • Companies that stay on XP will miss the forthcoming Vista SP 2's improved security and stability.

Paul DeGroot, an analyst at Directions on Microsoft notes that Microsoft makes similar routine arguments during every major OS transition. However, he feels those reasons are not sufficient to get companies move to Vista. DeGroot remaines unconvinced and says even with Vista's improved deployment tools, an in-place upgrade is one of the most costly and difficult projects for an IT department and he hasn't heard of any software vendors, including Microsoft, making an announcement of halting the support to XP apps before Windows 7 arrives. DeGroot concludes most companies will wait till Windows 7 ships or move to Vista only as they get new PC's.


Image courtesy: cnet news

Nearly a 3rd of companies listened to Microsoft's call and are deploying Vista in North America and Europe. Another 27% plans to deploy Vista in 2009 or 2010. However, a survey by Gartner shows that about 30% of large businesses are likely to skip Vista and many haven't decided what to do. Only a few are set to deploy both Windows Vista and Windows 7 as soon as possible.

Microsoft has also launched a new blog, Windows for your Business to market Windows to its corporate customers in which Schuster talks about Microsoft's plans to help reduce the IT costs of commercial customers who are looking at deploying Vista.

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24 Comments

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That's just insanely stupid... "We really, really think you should upgrade to the OS we couldn't move off the shelves before upgrading to the greatest OS evar!" Why the heck does the average consumer want to blow however many hundreds of dollars on Vista only to toss more money down a hole for the upgrade to Windows 7? If anything, they should bundle Vista free with Windows 7 so you can do the WinXP --> Vista --> Win 7 upgrade.

Whoa, advising people to move to Vista so shortly before Windows 7 comes out - that's downright lunatic!

"Ok, we didn't make near as much money from Vista as we wanted to, and now Windows 7 will come out soon... let's make a last attempt and see if we can't find a few more clueless, gullible people we can sell it to. Last chance now, once Windows 7 is out, it will be as hard to sell Vista as selling a refrigerator to an eskimo."

Besides that - "the risks of skipping Vista"!? :rofl:
I'll gladly pass up on the "risk" of not wasting my money on a putrid pile of donkey dung, thank you very much.

It amazes me to see how many people rush in with ignorant comments about Microsoft being "greedy". If anyone bothered to look at the graphic included with the article they would note that Microsoft gives specific guidance for all audience: Those still on 2000, those who are undecided on an upgrade, those already upgrading, and those who choose to wait.

If you look carefully, Microsoft recommends to those who are waiting for Windows 7 to ensure they have support for critical business applications and to evaluate Windows 7 early and thoroughly. They don't say "Noooo don't wait, get Vista now foolz lolz!"

They also suggest that organizations who are undecided should consider Vista to make the transition to 7 easier.

There's no FUD here, no pressure to get Vista. Just some considerations and guidance on the upgrade. Microsoft isn't stupid, they know not everyone will go to Vista before Windows 7. And they know that while there are many benefits, it's not going to be appropriate for every organization.

It's unfortunate that actually READING Neowin's posted articles is just too much work for some people before they rush in with their ignorance.

So basically, Microsoft is using this ploy to wipe-out the bad press that Vista had. It looks to me that way.

Uh, yeah, well of course they would like to you upgrade to Vista before Windows 7. This way they can hit you twice with the cost of an overpriced operating system. With all of the bad press surrounding Vista (much of it founded), most people are anticipating moving straight from Windows XP to Vista. For the sake of Microsoft, hope that the move for these customers will be smoother than that experienced by many of us with Vista. If not, then they should be prepared for a backlash, that could include losing even more of their market share to Apple.

If you read the article, it obviously isn't targeted to consumers, and is instead targeted to businesses, and even more so to businesses with software assurance licensing (who get free upgrades).

Even with SA, there's still a cost incurred by upgrading to Vista and then 7, but MS doesn't benefit (directly) from it. Instead the cost is the time and potential headaches that the IT staff will have to spend on it.

Why would companies waste $ on a new OS that they'll use for less than a year if going to 7?
Sounds pointless to me.

Those arguments seem right to me. Although, many companies are skipping Vista not for itself, but for the costs right now.

Migrating from Vista to Windows 7 would in fact be much more smoother.

Vista to Seven might be smoother, but would it be worth migrating from XP to Vista to Seven? If you're going to bother migrating at all, I'd imagine that jumping from XP to Seven would be just as much effort (if not less) than going through two migrations, regardless of how smooth the second migration is.

The odd thing is that even if Windows 7 is the greatest thing since sliced bread, no IT administrator is going to approve the OS for at least 1-2 years on their corporate network. That means that XP support really could have expired by then, and certainly support for Windows 2000.

Even if Windows Vista is "bleh", hardware cycles are far more important than software ones. If hardware were to break today, testing adequate Windows 7 support would be a nightmare if a company has been dealing only with XP up until then.

Companies that skip Vista are at risk of their software vendors halting support to Windows XP before Windows 7 arrives.

Dropping support for the world's most widely deployed desktop OS, and it's close counterpart Server 2003? Not likely.

Due to the similarity in code base for Vista and Windows 7, companies which upgrade to Vista now can enjoy a smoother upgrade to Windows 7 compared with the risky move straight from XP to Windows 7.

Churn operating systems twice in a short time period, and (except for Software Assurance customers) pay for Windows upgrades twice? Again, not likely. Also, how is moving from XP to Vista less risky than going straight to 7?

Deploying a new PC with Vista is cheaper than installing XP on it and then later move it to Windows 7.

True, it does take time to run the reinstall (or the reimaging disc many OEMs provide), but running a mixed NT5/NT6 environment isn't without its costs either.

Companies that stay on XP will miss the forthcoming Vista SP 2's improved security and stability.

Hm? XP and Vista are both about as stable as one could reasonably expect, and security patches for both will be delivered for quite a while. SP2 isn't going to be the patch to end all patching. Vista's current issues are speed, interface awkwardness, and compatibility. Windows 7 addresses the former two head-on, and compatibility is a wound that time has been healing nicely.