back to article Microsoft tells SMBs Vista isn't a risky business

Microsoft isn’t going to let the small detail of sluggish sales and take-up among businesses of its Windows Vista operating system get in the way of its latest attempt to woo the little guys. Yesterday at its annual worldwide partner shindig in Houston the firm launched a new small biz (SMBs) marketing campaign aimed at …


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  1. TeeCee Gold badge

    Customers interested in moving to Vista with confidence.

    That'll be a small market then.

    I'd have thought that targetting customers interested in moving to Vista with trepidation and a decent backout strategy in place would be more likely to yield results.

  2. Chad H.
    Thumb Down

    The Vista Compatibility Checker

    is it down because its not compatible with Vista?

  3. Robert Grant Silver badge

    Worst sentence ever?

    "Taking risks is a part of every small business, but making the move to the Windows Vista operating system isn't one of them."

    Isn't one of what? One of taking risks? Or one of every small business? Saying that moving to Vista isn't part of every small business does sound about right, empirically.

  4. Jess
    Paris Hilton

    Why would any small business

    opt for a system that is significantly different from their existing one and has a shelf life of perhaps 18 months before it's replaced by something probably significantly different again?

    If you are going to make a significant change in system better options would be either

    A system that you can be reasonably sure will look and feel substantially the same for the foreseeable future.

    Or one that is free and runs on your existing hardware too.

  5. iSuff44

    Microsoft tells SMBs Vista isn't a risky business

    Yes and Mac OS 14 is out according to google, who are you trying to fool???

  6. Jon
    Paris Hilton

    Change for changes sake

    I see no reason at all to move our Windows boxes from XP, what happened to "If it 'aint broke..."?

    I moved my laptop to XP a year ago, and that was only because the WiFi support on 2K was pants. *Only* reason. Vista? You'll have to pry the XP licence out of my cold dead hand etc.

    Paris because she probably has more of a clue than MS marketing atm.

  7. Doug Glass

    Business 101

    Small business don't have the deep pockets of the larger corporations and therefore can afford even less to make costly mistakes.

    M$ is about to get a real lesson in real world economics. If the big boys are staying away from Vista, small ones wont touch it.

  8. N
    Thumb Down

    Windows Vista Compatibility Center...

    Computer says "No"


  9. Anonymous Coward

    I like the last line

    “Taking risks is a part of every small business, but making the move to the Windows Vista operating system isn't one of them

    I can only think of rewording that.

    "Taking risks is a part of every small business, but making the move to the Windows is the biggest one of them"

    To someone with one server and five PC's they just can't do that math and risk of having Pc's down for a day or three while "Tweaks are made" By some heavily accented gentlemen from an Indian call centre tries to fix it. Yes it might work eventually as some of the help guys rock, but the risk and downtime in the current climate of Britain can't do it.

  10. Gary F

    True cost of upgrade not worth it

    What's the cost of upgrading a business with 25 PCs? About £2K in Vista licenses, £2K in time for the office IT guy to thoroughly check compatibility with existing software, hardware and network, £2K for essential memory upgrades, £4K to replace a number of PCs that are under-spec, £5K in time to back up every computer before the install and time lost while the employees can't use their computers, £3K to perform the upgrade and re-install everyone's applications, £2K in time to train staff how to use it, £10K+ for lost productivity while users get to grips with it and to report issues to their IT guy, or asking "how do I...?" questions, plus time wasted customising their own desktops and folders again, reconfiguring their applications, setting preferences, etc.

    Remind me again what the business benefit of Vista is? It could realistically cost a business upwards of £20K for upgrading 25 machines. No wonder most people have decided the benefits don't outweigh the costs. Waiting for Windows 7 is a very sensible and economic business decision - providing Microsoft learn the lesson from Vista. If not we'll all be moving to Mac and Linux!

  11. Fred

    No pegs todays thanks...

    To run any sucessful business we use proven tech.

    The more hype and sales pitch the more we switch off.

    Time to admit defeat before they (MS) start to get treated like Jehovas witnesses....

    I would like to spare more time in pointing out more items of glaring common sense but i have money to make and a business to run...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Robert Grant.... learn English sentence structure!

    Take an english course and learn about proper sentence structure, and you too could learn how to pick out what verb is the subject being referred to.

    Pfftt... in fact; after looking at your response (gramatically)... you could use a few courses. LOLOL

    Even Paris has a better grasp of the language.

  13. paul

    MS says give us more money.

    Sensible folk say: move to linux. Dont get locked in an upgrade trap.

    Worried about your applications? They wont run on new versions of windows at some point in the future either vista, 7 or the next.

    Worried about your users? They will have to get used to new windows.

    Worried about upgrade cost? Why - existing PCs will be fine.

    Worried about exoctic hardware? Yes , this is a serious issue. By some cheap chineese stuff to replace it. Not ideal, but nothing ever is.

    Worried about future upgrades? No, you should be excited. Windows upgrades bring nothing. Linux upgrades usually bring better software.

  14. Aodhhan

    Why we moved to Vista

    Don't require a 3rd party for file system and data at rest encryption; where you can move the medium to another computer and it still can be read

    Don't require a 3rd party to share desktop and file system accross the internet securely; add seemless transition through VPN or RAS

    Don't require a 3rd party for voice recognition applications, and nothing out there right now comes close to Vista right now in this feature

    Granularity with group policy; which could fill a few pages for those familiar with the cat2 support savings

    Many internal collaboration features with Office and SPS not available with XP

    Improved versioning in shadow copy

    Moved to Vista at the end of December. No problems what-so-ever.

    Might want to learn to use the system before you bash it. Don't just jump on a bandwagon or give up because something is different. If everything was kept the same, everyone would still be using MS DOS and 70% of you probably would find computers too difficult to work with.

    Yes, Vista had compatibility issues early; which is why we waited.. However, like I said before... no problems, and a huge increase in capability and security. In fact, many applications created for Vista have many more features than those which run on XP

  15. Lager And Crisps
    Jobs Horns

    ...and the truth shall set you free, for a fee!

    In the present financial climate SMBs are the least able to upgrade an already working infastructure (Windows 2000/XP with Office 97/2000/XP) with a new and untested edifice (Windows Vista/7/? with Office 2007/?/?).

    And although many of the 'Anonymous Cowards' from the Redmond collective would have you believe otherwise, present day systems will do the same thing tomorrow as they did yesterday. Should you need more than 512mb of ram on a single core to type in Word and answer that email from your Boss?

    I run Ubuntu Linux (Gutsy) and it is not the best, fastest or most stable of the distributions available. But it is a good all-rounder and can be had for free (via this 'internet' thing) or have paid support direct from Canonical. I have no doubt said support is no worse than having to phone India and try to talk to someone who has a poor grasp of English about why your printer driver keeps getting rejected (no I'm not flaming the indigenous people from this part of the world).

    If Ballmer is intent, and it seems he is, on trying to force the issue he will fail.

    I have no love for Gates but I suspect he would go about this in a more intelligent and subtle way.

    Listen to what your customer wants and needs then give it to them. Ballmer is the proverbial bull in a china shop belligerently ramming home what HE believes the customer wants and needs.

  16. Tony
    Black Helicopters


    The use of the term "risk" generally implies at least a small probability of success.

  17. Pascal Monett Silver badge


    Every product has a market, and you are obviously either part of that market, or part of an MS astroturf marketing team.

    If Vista is good for you, great (for you). We're all very happy for you and wish you the best of luck.

    Undoubtedly Vista does have one or two features that will indeed appeal to a certain part of the global market. Unfortunately, it also has two or three "features" that greatly displease a certain part of the global market. And right now, you have to admit that the latter portion is bigger than the former.

    As for your remark "learn to use the system before you bash it", sorry but no. I don't need to learn to use a DRM-infected system to know I don't like the idea, just like I don't need to try hard drugs to know they're not good for me.

    A vast majority of the market does not like Vista and you're just going to have to live with that.

  18. Dave

    Risk != Vista

    “Taking risks is a part of every small business, but making the move to the Windows Vista operating system isn't one of them.”


    “Taking risks is a part of every small business, but making the move to the Windows Vista operating system is so far beyond 'RISK' that I can't find a suitable word, and will therefore have to bamboozle you with silly, time-limited free offers that may not be any use to you, either way.”

  19. Keith Smith

    Critical Improvements in Vista

    Yes, yes,

    I can't wait to have people in all 200 of those cubes on the floor, talking into microphones attempting to get voice recognition to send e-mail to someone on the other side of the building.

    That VPN thang is really kewl too. I'll need that so that clerk on the internal network on the machine on his desk, locked down to access only those three applications they are allowed to run, can shunt all the corporate security.


  20. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    the pedantic typo-correcto-bot strikes again

    "the unloved ginger kid of the family"

    ah, yes I see the problem. You've omitted the word "illigitimate" from between the words "unloved" and "ginger"; the words "bastard spawn of satan lurking inside the warm skin of a freshly murdered" from between the words "ginger" and ""kid" and the word "family" should be spelt "torrid affair between your slut wife and the milkman". Apart from that, everything else seems fine.

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