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Rumors of Vista's Demise Should Be Greatly Accelerated

Windows 7 is looking better and better as it gets closer to release. Analysts like Gartner are stating the obvious, telling businesses to avoid Vista and go directly to Windows 7. Microsoft should go even further, though, and take measures to ensure that Vista disappears as quickly as possible.
Windows 7 is looking better and better as it gets closer to release. Analysts like Gartner are stating the obvious, telling businesses to avoid Vista and go directly to Windows 7. Microsoft should go even further, though, and take measures to ensure that Vista disappears as quickly as possible.Like Windows Me a decade ago, Windows Vista was a major disaster for Microsoft. The product was filled with problems and launched before it was ready. By the time Microsoft smoothed out most of the problems, Vista had already gotten a lasting reputation for being annoying and slow. The sooner Microsoft can close that embarrassing chapter, the better.

With that in mind, Microsoft should stop selling Vista in the retail and OEM channels as soon as possible, replacing it with Windows 7. A few businesses may want the option of buying Vista if they've invested in conversion and training, but most are still on XP for the majority of their users. Stopping the spread of Vista just makes sense.

In addition, the company should provide a significant price break for users and businesses that want to upgrade from Vista, much better than any offered to XP upgraders. This will be Microsoft's apology and thank-you to users that ended up with Vista whether they wanted it or not. Most PCs should run Windows 7 at least as well -- if not better -- than Vista, so hardware requirements shouldn't be a barrier to user upgrades.

One thing that Microsoft should not do is try to make up for its recent revenue downturn by exploiting its monopoly and jacking up the price of Windows 7. Despite all the improvements made in Windows 7, it still requires additional expenditures for things like malware protection. Vista's reputation has created pent-up demand for upgrades. Microsoft should exploit that and get the Vista era behind it as quickly as possible.

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