back to article CTOs warned to prepare for Windows 7 budget squeeze

Businesses rushing to upgrade their computers from Microsoft’s Windows XP and Windows 2000 to Windows 7 can expect their budget purse to swell in 2011-2012, IT analyst house Gartner warned yesterday. “Corporate IT departments typically prefer to migrate PC operating systems (OSs) via hardware attrition, which means bringing in …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns

    The revolution will be forced upon you

    We have found through our testing that quite a lot of new laptops won't even boot XP. That is, there seems to be something in the hardware or BIOS which forces the user towards Windows 7. I guess Microsoft figures that the only way to kill XP is to prevent it from running. Too bad....

    1. James 132

      Probably Mass Storage

      XP's embedded drivers no longer work on a large number of newer platforms using Sata & AHCI - they won't boot. You need to provide these drivers during installation, or already have them on an image. It's a fiddle, but can be done. Alternatively, if the BIOS permits it, change the controller mode to 'IDE emulation' and it should be fine.

  2. Arctic fox

    Sorry, I plead ignorance but....

    ....they have four years and that still is not enough? If I have misunderstood something I would be most gratefull for an explanation.

  3. Ian Hindmarsh

    You're having a laugh, right?

    is a highly-skilled Windows 7 techy?

    due to the fact that demand for highly-skilled Windows 7 techies will outstrip supply

  4. Rogerborg

    Ubuntu + Wine + Windows 7 theme

    90% of your users won't be able to tell the difference, your "labor" (sic) costs are the same, no need to upgrade any machines, and no more ongoing licensing costs (except for any Windows apps that you really can't do without).

    And I assure you, I wash quite regularly - this is a purely pragmatic suggestion, not an ideological one.

    1. Anonymous Coward


      This fantastically complex and bloated OS (Win7 I mean, nnot Linux) will be used to err.... surf the web and ummmm.... produce simple documents.

      Integration into Active Directory and support for server shares is perfectly possible. People will just not know the difference

    2. George 24

      If only it was true

      Ubuntu + Wine + w7 theme? If wine was running Windows apps at 100% capability it would be fantastic. Most businesses run MS office. Try running office on a tux machine and integrate with other apps like Trim EDRMS.

      Also try getting the support needed for businesses in a non MS environment. I am not talking at the OS level but at the apps level.

      1. Christian Berger

        @If only it was true

        It's not like Windows 7 would be 100% Windows compatible. Windows 7 is only "Vista compatible" not "Windows" compatible.

  5. Ku...

    The sky isn't falling in...

    Reading some of the articles and listening in on other IT pros taling you'd think the world was ending, not XP support.... C'mon, lets get this in perspective: If you have a 3 year hardware refresh cycle then you will have all the HW and OS licencing in a 3 year rolling programme anyway. If you buy MVL OS then please tell me you staged purchase of these to include W7 licence or at least if your hand was forced to buy early you took software assurance?

    We have a large proportion of our W7 licencing (OEM and MVL, we have a mix) covered already.

    Also we already did the upgrade to Vista (we use Bitlocker, and a couple of other features in Vista it was way cheaper to go Vista than implement another solution) plus we part funded our W7 upgrade this way, especially as the move to W7 from Vista is simple.

    TBH XP to Vista was OK. And, believe it or not, Donkey Vista is waaaay more reliable in operation than XP ever was. OS related support calls are way down.

    I saw Gartner or Forester saying it would cost companies who didn't go to Vista way more to do W7 than those of us who did. I'm never sure that the figures they quote aren't just a little over cooked though.

    Suffice to say, when we decide to go to W7 it won't be the end of the world. What is hurting companies out there is the lack of forsight to invest in the upgrades as you go along. You then have to pay to catch up and either risk getting further behind or ramping up the cost in a short window.

    If you are going to go Microsoft you need to be keeping up with the game. If you are not prepapred to do that, then maybe its time to talk to the opersource guys.

  6. UncleVom
    Jobs Horns

    XP > 7 ulgy by M$ choice

    While Vista to Win7 is a relatively easy upgrade from and old machine to a new one or merely upgrading the existing OS.

    Some bright spark at Microsoft must have decided to make the transition form XP extra miserable in hope that it forces the intermediate use of Vista as an upgrade path or maybe just to punish the unbelievers who didn't adopt Vista.

    Instead of being a click, click migration of user application data it becomes unsupported geek trickery, which IMHO eats up $ unnecessarily.

    The transition could have been easy if M$ wanted.

    Steve, you've got to change your evil ways, Baby.

    1. James O'Shea
      Thumb Down

      ugly by choice

      1 you're using the wrong icon. That's the iSteve from Apple, not Monkey-boy Ballmer.

      2 it is a very, very, VERY bad idea to do an upgrade install on Windows. Doing that will work, sometimes. However, more often it will _seem_ to work, only to barf all over the place a few days later and cleaning up the mess will take longer than it would have to just do a proper install in the first place. Windows is _not_ Mac OS X or even Linux. Doing an in place upgrade with OS X works almost all the time. Doing an in place upgrade with Windows is begging for trouble.

      3 even if doing an in place install would work reliably, which is not so, doing such an upgrade in any orginisation larger than a mom&pop shop is a massive waste of time. It would be far faster to identify the hardware that will be upgraded, identify the software which will be installed (including OS) and then to generate an image for each type of hardware and for each department required. Setting up each image takes time, but once the images are set they can be dumped over the network to the proper machines overnight. All drivers, applications, etc will be installed properly and will be ready to go by the time the first users show up in the morning. No muss, no fuss, no pain at all. (User data is, of course, stored on a network share and is properly backed up. Anything not in that share will be history, 'cause the first thing the imaging process does is to wipe the user hard drives clean...) There is simply no way that I'd have my boyz'n'grrlz wonder the building doing in place upgrades, not even to Macs, where at least it'll work. (_My_ Mac on _my_ desktop, both at the office and at home, gets an in place upgrade, as do some of the Chosen Few; everyone else gets an image dropped from on high, just like the WinBoxen. It's just faster and easier that way.) Nah, we image 'em. We've been imaging them for _years_. The only WinBoxen which get updated by hand are the machines we use to build new images on... and they get the nuke and pave treatment: reformat the drive, and do a clean install of the relevant software from drivers on up.

  7. Anonymous Coward


    Nobody in their right mind would "Do an in-place OS upgrade in a business environment".

    Always, that's ALWAYS, do a fresh install of the OS and apps, and re-image from that.

    So the fact that M$ chose not to allow a direct upgrade path from XP to Win7 is irrelevant.

    Did I ever tell you that nobody who knows what their doing in a business environment would EVER to an in-place OS upgrade - it is BAD practice.

    I once built a Windows 2000 Desktop environment for an ex-utility company that had around 5000 seats and 40 different Desktop and Laptop PCs models and refused to rationalize. The whole image was installed over the network to each machine. The whole build process was driven by a single floppy disk (well this was 1999/2000) holding all of the required NDIS2 network drivers; my unattended install file was awesome too!

    1. UncleVom

      @The REAL Anonymous Coward

      I agree, crazy in a situation of any size, and undesirable in most, but I think we are talking a couple of magnitudes of difference in scale.

      Ok fresh new box, new install of apps, that doesn't address the hassle that is put forth in the transition of user data from XP to 7.

      Maybe if the data is sitting elsewhere on a server, but locally what do you say, "Fresh start, new day, start over."?

      The migration of the individual user's application data is what is really fsck'd IMHO.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    I got meself a shiny new laptop...

    With Win7 - i consider myself upgraded... and yet my system has just restarted after a fatal crash, different day, different OS, same shite...

  9. Tom 13

    re: Gartner timeframe statement

    If the business execs en masse need a couple more years on XP, they will get. MS bent to their will with Vista, they will again with 7 if push comes to shove.

    That being said, I fully expect most businesses will upgrade to 7 before the end of 2014. It is getting more problematic to support XP with newer hardware, and MS made progress on closing security holes with Vista, it was just a dog of a system and lacked vendor support in certain key segments of the market. At this point those segments are better filled.

  10. Eddie Johnson

    Where Are They Shopping?

    I haven't paid over $1000 for a PC in quite a few years. The $399-$499 range is complete crap but you can get some good performance for $700-$800.

    A friend recently got suckered into buying some $499 HP PCs for his office, they ran like crap out of the box and can only get worse. It's not worth upgrading any components either because they are mediocre across the board. I always try and go with custom builds and get at least a few good components and leave some areas open for future upgrade. Get a good motherboard and a middle of the road processor for example. Then 3 years down the road you can cheaply upgrade the processor and RAM without disrupting anything.

    1. Anonymous Coward


      I am guessing you are using OEM licences unless retail. As far as I know you break the OEM EULA if you are building machines in house unless you are in fact a system builder who sells on to others but also supplies your own company. Otherwise you are using retail licences and are paying a great deal for your OS.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Gartner says...

    lol. Article needs joke or troll icon.

  12. Mike Row
    Thumb Down

    50% of installed PCs are Windows 7 licensed running XP Pro downgrade

    Licensing is not the issue, neither is the hardware, ONly issue is all the crap changes in Vista and 7. Once its approved rolling it out is mostly labour.

  13. Shanghai Tom

    Cost of Win7 upgrade os "hidden"

    I upgraded to Win 7, then I found that 1500+ usd of software that worked on XP won't work on Win7, Win7 happily tells me to contact the various suppliers and obtain "compatible" new versions.

    So.. a 200$ upgrade turned into a 2000$ upgrade.

    You can guess the rest... win7 cd in the trash, win xp rules again, but I am also using Linux , which cost me 10cents to burn the CD and all the software I need is free....

  14. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Ah, Gartner

    So they're still in the market selling ludicrous "forecasts" ? Oh well, one born every minute.

  15. Alan 45

    Who on Earth wrote this crap!!!

    Where as it would probably be correct to say that on mass no one adopted Vista it is unbelievable to suggest business's have just sat on hands since they upgraded hardware on there XP cycle. Therefore even if they have not upgraded their whole estate to Win7 spec machines they will have bought at least some that were capable of running Vista and hence Win7.

    Where I work at least the hardware was all upgraded with an OS downgrade to XP as Vista would not cut it so should be a straight forward process to upgrade to Win 7 when they decide to bite the bullet suspect post SP2 with upgrades over network should I hope prove relatively painless nah! who am i Kidding

  16. Goat Jam

    Pavlovs Dogs had nothing on most IT depts

    They're like a bunch of shuffling zombies.

    W I N D O Z E !!!!! . . . . must . . . . upgrade . . . . new . . . . . version . . . AAAARGH!!!!

    <munch gobble etc>

    Sometimes I think that the main thing keeping these morons on the treadmill is the fear that their precious MCSE's might become obsolete.

    It's not like the free alternatives are going to have any more of a difficult upgrade path considering the differences between XP and 7. Don't even mention user retraining because I absolutely guarantee that a free desktop could be themed and tweaked to look and work like Windows XP with much more success than could be achieved with Windows 7.

    Microsoft really should have kept "Classic Mode" going if they wanted to retain the ascendancy in this area.

This topic is closed for new posts.

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020