Opinion Pieces

Time is right for move to Windows 7

21 October 2009

~ Louis Botha is the CTO of Think iT Solutions, a leading South African systems integrator and IT implementation specialist ~

Take the performance and stability of Windows XP and combine it with the slicker user interface and advanced administration features Microsoft brought to the fore with Windows Vista. Now, add about 50% more features to the mix and the most comprehensive hardware driver database anyone has seen to date, and that’s Windows 7.

Think iT has been using Windows 7 in our full production environment ever since it entered release candidate stage earlier this year. As implementers we immediately noted marked improvements in Windows 7’s performance, stability, driver support and overall compatibility with legacy applications over Windows Vista.

Windows 7 has been far more efficient at managing hardware resources than its predecessor, meaning customers can move directly from Windows XP to Windows 7 and see similar performance on the same hardware, or move from Windows Vista to Windows 7 and gain access to performance improvements.

Additionally, on the stability and hardware support fronts, we can’t remember when last we saw the notorious ‘blue screen of death’ or needed to install a piece of driver software.

Rounding things out on the compatibility front, customers shouldn’t experience a day’s problems when it comes to getting legacy Windows XP applications to work with Windows 7.

The much-vaunted Windows 7 XP-Mode works as well in practice as Microsoft claims. By running legacy applications on a virtualized instance of Windows XP, Microsoft has ensured Windows XP users can make the move to Windows 7 without the risk of incompatibility.

The biggest reason to make the move to Windows 7 from a legacy Windows XP environment is however still support from Microsoft. Mainstream support for XP ended in April this year and the operating system will officially no longer be supported beyond April of 2014. While that may sound like a long way off, migrating an entire enterprise’s desktops to a new operating system is a time consuming process.

We've spent months putting Windows 7 through its paces and it is the real deal. We are confident that Windows 7 will be rapidly adopted by organisations globally as they move away from XP and Vista.

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