Sales & Marketing
Training & Development
PCs & Servers
Imaging & Printing
Opinion: Will XP's expiry breathe new life into Vista?
Jul 13, 2008 11:13 PM
Microsoft has cut off the supply of Windows XP, but enterprises are still unwilling to give it up.
With the end of June came another ending; the cut-off date after which Microsoft will no longer supply Windows XP to retail outlets or to PC vendors. It marks the beginning of the end for one of the longest-serving and probably most widely-adopted versions of Windows that the company has produced.
I believe that this is a monumental mistake on the part of the software giant, as there is clearly still a great deal of demand for Windows XP, whereas its successor is unloved and unwanted. Microsoft might believe that it can force customers to migrate to Vista by withdrawing the older platform, but this is a dangerous strategy that could backfire.
The problem with Vista is that it is the wrong product at the wrong time.
The economic outlook is not good, to say the least, and so the majority of organisations are looking at ways of reining in spending, not drawing up plans for a costly and complex migration to a new platform.
Unlike earlier transitions, there is a steep difference in the hardware needed to run Vista at an adequate level of performance, when compared with its predecessor. This might be acceptable if Vista offered some tangible benefit that would give businesses a compelling reason to move, but it is difficult to think of a single area where Vista is better than XP.
Microsoft has tried to counter this with campaigns listing reasons for customers to migrate to its latest operating system, but quite frankly, I find most of these claims dubious. My experience of using Vista is that it takes longer to accomplish most tasks, simply because many functions are hidden away further down in the menu system than they are with XP.
It thus takes more mouse clicks to find and open Administrative Tools, for example. And yes, you can use Vista’s built-in search to find it, but is this the best Microsoft can come up with for a 21st century operating system? I thought we had left behind typing out commands when DOS was retired.
The situation businesses therefore face is that a Vista migration will cost them a lot of money, and give little or no return on their investment. In fact, productivity may even decline.
Small wonder, then, that enterprises are mostly avoiding it like the plague. In June, it was revealed that chip giant Intel has decided not to move its own employees to Vista, while IT services firm CapGemini told IT Week earlier this year that none of its enterprise customers has shown any interest in a Vista migration.
So what happens now? The supply of XP might have been cut off, but support will continue until at least 2014. Organisations with an enterprise software agreement will continue to use XP, as they have the downgrade rights to deploy this even on newly-bought systems. So these companies are likely to remain on XP for the foreseeable future.
Smaller businesses and consumers are likely to find that they have no choice but to accept Vista on new PCs, but the danger for Microsoft is that there are many attractive alternatives around these days. The take-up of Apple Mac systems is growing, and Linux is now as easy to use as Windows, as its popularity in mini laptops such as the Asus Eee PC has shown.
If Microsoft wants my advice, it should snap out of its corporate denial over Vista, and admit it has made an operating system that nobody wants. The fact is, XP is going to be the platform of choice until at least the launch of Windows 7, whether Microsoft likes it or not.
Follow us on
@ 2010 Incisive Media
Microsoft adds four new features to Windows 10
Apple unveils new iPads and 5K Retina iMac
Free Windows attracts 50 new tablet and phone makers
Windows 9 video shows new Start menu
Symantec signs Jarryd Hayne, gives $123,000 to Beyondblue
Aussie firm scores Lorna Jane wi-fi deal
Apple dumping VMware for KVM, report sources
Head-to-head: Nexus 6P vs iPhone 6s Plus
PwC resigns as auditor for Xero in bid to become reseller
Send us your tips
You must be a registered member of CRN to post a comment.
Click here to login
Click here to register
Ads by Google
Microsoft unveils first laptop and Surface Pro 4
Major hardware unveiling includes Surface Pro 4 tablet, Surface Book, Surface Pen, new Lumias.
Revealed: Microsoft's new Surface Book
[Photos] See Microsoft's landmark hybrid laptop.
Meet the Surface Pro 4
[Photos] Thinner, lighter and faster than any previous Surface Pro.
Sign up to receive CRN email bulletins
TPG’s $1bn Vodafone deal delivers slap in face to Optus
CSC to acquire UXC for $428 million
Optus reseller Yatango Mobile Australia hits the wall
TechOne reveals another $10 million buyout
Cracking the Mac security myth
Powered by Disqus
Has consolidation gone too far in the telco/ISP industry?
view previous polls »
Powered by Disqus
CRN Magazine looks in-depth at the emerging issues and developments for the channel, and provides insight, analysis and strategic information to help resellers better run their businesses.
What's in this issue?
Most popular tech stories
7 accounting packages for Australian small businesses compared: including MYOB, QuickBooks Online, Reckon, Xero
Do you use Dropbox? Here are some clever tricks
How to get the best parking rates at Sydney Airport
How much does it cost to use the NBN? 14 providers compared including iiNet, Telstra, Internode
Tip: Your shop can use a smartphone instead of an EFTPOS terminal
Customer data stolen in Kmart Australia hack
Cut submarine cable cripples Apple services for Telstra customers
Macquarie Uni shifts from Gmail to Office 365 over privacy concerns
David Jones website hacked, customer data stolen
NBN takes aim at satellite broadband leechers
How to: How much RAM do you really need?
Top 25 fantasy games of all time
11 WhatsApp tricks you may not know about
Top 15 obscure video game consoles for collectors
The Top 25 Superhero games of all time
The rise (and fall?) of StarCraft
Departing designer sheds dim light on CIG's corporate culture
Runescape and coming home
Review: Intel i7-4970K
First Impressions - Elite: Dangerous
PC & Tech Authority
nextmedia Pty Ltd
. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in any form without prior authorisation.
Your use of this website constitutes acceptance of nextmedia's
Terms & Conditions
Login to CRN
Email or Username:
* Email or Username required
* Password required
Forgot your password?
Don't have an account? Register now!
To request a
, enter the email address linked to your CRN account and we'll send one to you.
* Email required
* Invalid Email address
* Invalid Email address
Click here to return to Login Form