Survey finds 67% of Australian businesses considering deploying Windows 7 in next 12 months

Wednesday, 21 October, 2009

Data#3 has released the results of a recent survey of 192 Australian CIOs and IT managers regarding their plans to deploy Windows 7 in their organisations. The survey found: CIOs and IT managers have a clear understanding of the features and benefits of Windows 7.

After deploying Windows 7 to its 470-strong workforce in September 2009, Data#3 asked customers what was the one question they would like answered by Data#3’s Windows 7 deployment team.

According to the survey, the top five areas questioned by Australian CIOs and IT Managers regarding Windows 7 in the enterprise were:

  • Deployment and migration
  • Application support
  • Impact on end users
  • Lessons learned from others
  • Business case to move from XP or Vista to Windows 7

It is clear from the survey responses that Australian CIOs and IT managers have a good grasp of the features and benefits of Windows 7. There does, however, seem to be a lot of uncertainty when it comes to how to best deploy the software, whether corporate applications will be compatible and how to reduce the impact on end users during the migration process.

Commenting on the results, Data#3’s Microsoft Services Practice Manager, Scott Gosling, said, “One of the major deployment challenges posed by Windows Vista was application compatibility, as some key corporate applications were incompatible on release.”

“These challenges were widely reported and are still fresh in many CIO’s minds. New approaches are available with the release of Windows 7 to address application compatibility challenges for corporate applications. These include Windows XP Mode and MED-V (Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualisation), which is a component of the Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack (MDOP) suite. Microsoft has also released the Application Compatibility Toolkit 5.5 which includes comprehensive guidance for application compatibility.”

“In short, these tools provided by Microsoft give organisations the ability to test application compatibility ahead of time and provide a remediation mechanism should challenges exist.”

Respondents to the survey also wanted to draw on the experiences of others - suggesting that Australian organisations want to reduce risk and ‘see some runs on the board’ before pursuing their own deployment.

Gosling continues, “We completely understand the requirement for evidence and that is why we pushed ahead with our own deployment.

"It was important, in our minds, to deploy these technologies as we would for our customers. We formed a team, managed the project with effective project management, developed a detailed communications plan and used our lead technical expertise to deliver the solution.

“Why make a significant investment such as this? Two reasons - firstly, our own business case showed us that the returns available more than justified the investment and, secondly, we wanted to understand the risks and issues that our customers would face in their deployment of Windows 7. We saw our own deployment as able to provide us with an unique perspective that would give our customers confidence and certainty.”

“Rather than take a product demonstration on the road to our key customers, the sharing of our key lessons learned - our real world experience - resonated loudly with our customers.”

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