We've been talking quite a bit about various aspects of Vista on the IT Manager Connection blog as well as the Canadian IT Pro blog - aspects such as configuration, deployment and the impact of service pack 1. SP1 became available to TechNet and MSDN subscribers a few weeks ago, but today the big announcement is that it becomes available to the public for download. In mid-April, SP1 will become available to Vista customers through Automatic Updates.

[UPDATE] For more details on SP1 and the KB articles you should review before installing it, please visit the Windows Vista blog.

It's been a year of great progress for the Vista team, since Windows Vista was first released. SP1 addresses many of the key issues identified by customers such as performance, reliability and compatibility. There are now 78,000 devices and components supported by Windows Update, over 150 critical Enterprise applications that had been hold-ups for many Vista deployments are now compatible, and over 2,500 "certified for" or "works with" logo's applications are now available (that's 10x the number of Windows XP logo'd applications in the same timeframe).

With the release of SP1, many of you may be thinking about deploying Vista to your organizations if you haven't already. There are many resources such as the Springboard website and the TechNet Desktop Deployment site to help you out and give you guidance, whether you're rolling out 50 workstations or 50,000 workstations. Not the least of these is the Deploy Now site and events that are happening in Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa, Vancouver and Calgary. These events are free deployment briefing sessions designed for technical decision makers and IT implementers. They cover the following:

  • The overall deployment process
  • Free Microsoft tools that can help accelerate the deployment process including Business Desktop Deployment (BDD) 2007, Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit (ACT) 5.0,  Windows Vista Hardware Assessment Solution Accelerator, and the Microsoft Office Migration Planning Manager
  • Real-world examples from customers that are already underway with their deployments
  • Clear next steps on moving the deployment forward including certified Microsoft technology partner services offers and technical and end-user training courses

They're happening once a month in each city (except Calgary, where they happen every second month) until June. Check out the schedule and register early to ensure your spot.

And one last thing, if you're going to be deploying Vista in Canada or have already done so, let me know! I may be able to connect you with other internal resources, plus I'm always looking to share stories of what IT professionals are doing and how they're meeting the challenges of today's fast paced, always on, Web 2.0 business environment. 

 

Driving Deployment