The InformationWeek Vista Roundtable: Part Five - InformationWeek

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The InformationWeek Vista Roundtable: Part Five

The Vista Roundtable participants offer a few last words on the future of Vista, and its adoption by individuals and companies.

To find out how Vista is being approached in the trenches, we invited six readers to a week-long roundtable discussion. Participants included:

  • Dennis Barr, Mgr, Information Technology of the Larkin Group Inc.
  • Marc Chester, Vice President, Business Development for Data Reduction Systems
  • Bill Flanagan, an independent consultant in IT and particularly networking.
  • David Gray, Vice President for Information Technology & CIO and CEO, UMassOnline for the University of Massachusetts
  • Chris Rutkowski, IT Manager for Reliant Behavioral Health
  • Wayne Wengert, a retired programmer/IT specialist
In the first segment, the participants introduced themselves and offered their initial opinions about Microsoft's new OS. In the second, the participants discussed the inevitability of Vista as the standard for personal computing and whether users will accept alternatives to Windows. In the third segment, they went into detail about how developers can take advantage of Vista, and examined problems with specific apps and processes. In part four, they talked about their reactions to the Vista experience. Now, in this, the final segment, our panel offers their final words on the Vista phenomenon and its effect on individuals and companies.

Dennis Barr: I've had conversations about Vista over the weekend, and the two people with whom I spoke seem to support the validity of my business-oriented decisions. One person is a sysadmin for a much larger engineering company than the one where I work (his company has thousands of seats spread across many locations; we're one location with around 50 users). His conclusion, after testing Vista Business RTM for a few weeks, was that they won't be ready to deploy Vista before next year, that there are just too many things that still need to be brought up to snuff to mandate any kind of move to Vista.

The Windows Vista Roundtable

•   Part 1: First Impressions

•   Part 2: The Inevitability Of Vista

•   Part 3: Vista For Developers

•   Part 4: Is Vista A "Wow!"?

•   Part 5: Final Thoughts

•  Join The Discussion

The other fellow is more of a developer than sysadmin, and told me he's been playing with Mac OS X. His experience with the Mac has underlined for him the truth, contrary to what people hear from Mac zealots, that the Mac has software lockups and crashes just like the PC. He did comment on the higher level of fit and finish in the Mac, though, when compared to Windows. I got the distinct impression that he was satisfied for the present with a well-running Windows XP system. The take-away from both these conversations, to me at least, is that while Vista shows promise, it's not quite ready for prime time in many businesses.

As I've said before, from a personal-use standpoint, I'm satisfied with Windows XP running on the hardware I currently use. I've installed a couple of versions of OpenSUSE 10.2 over the last couple of months, and I've been having more fun wading through this new environment than I did in the months I wrestled with various betas and release candidates of Vista.

Even though I have access to RTM code for Vista, I really have to think about what I want to do with the opportunity to install it. I frankly don't want to mess up well-running computers just to say I've got Vista loaded. My interchangeable hard drives will come to the rescue for that problem, when I get the time. I do have to say, though, that once again from a personal-use standpoint, I'm really tempted to make the move to Linux for my main home desktop.

Marc Chester: As a technology company, we sometimes tread a fine line between the bleeding and leading edge. I have already done several product demonstrations using Vista as the underlying OS. While my customers are not flocking to Vista today, it gave them comfort to know that we are already deployed on Vista and are in the process of certifying our applications for Vista. While marketing and sales have been quick to make this jump, it is important to note that my internal IT/Development groups feel similarly to everyone else participating in this roundtable.

In summary, we are moving to Vista in a two-pronged approach. This first has the sales and marketing departments leading the charge, full speed ahead. The other has our internal IT group saying: Let's see how this evolves over the course of the next 6-12 months.

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