Last week we blogged about some early lessons learned from Windows 7 deployment.  It seems like this is a pretty hot topic, as today more information has come out from Forrester in a CIO article written by Shane O’Neill

Over the past six months Forrester has spoken with 40 Windows 7 early adopters, most from large enterprises. The research firm then compiled a list of best practices for companies developing a Windows 7 migration strategy.  Their summary is not that different from BMW’s experience, but some interesting strategy tips are worth mentioning. 

Here are Forrester's five best practices for migrating to Windows 7, quoted from their summary on CIO.com:

Don't Take App Compatibility Lightly - “Microsoft did more preparation for the hardware and software ecosystem of Windows 7 than it did for Vista”.  Companies that are on Windows XP or earlier should expect approximately two-thirds of their applications not to be natively supported on Windows 7, according to Forrester.  But companies that have deployed Vista or have done extensive application compatibility testing against it should expect that two-thirds to reduce to 3 to 5 percent, writes Gray.
Time Win7 Upgrades with PC Refreshes -
One-fifth of the companies Forrester spoke with are upgrading to Windows 7 on existing hardware.  Writes Gray.
Invest in Client Management Software - Having client management tools in-house will ease Windows 7 upgrades, free up IT for other projects and help retain employees who want more computing flexibility, he adds. The client management space has myriad vendors from which to choose.
Consider Client Virtualization for Windows 7 Deployments -
Application and desktop virtualization offers an effective path to migration for companies struggling with the complexities and costs of upgrading an OS and testing for app compatibility.
Don't Overdo the Training - The Windows 7
user interface and navigation features are not so different from Vista and Windows XP that a lot of training is required. Forrester predicts that even those who are not using Windows 7 at home will only need an hour or two to become accustomed to the OS.

As we promised in last weeks blog, we will be diving into these topics with deeper posts that include interviews, demos and more.  Look for Part 1 to be posted soon!

Thanks for reading,

bio picJeff Wettlaufer 
Sr. Technical Product Manager
System Center

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