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The Real World

By chuckdarwin ·

Because of the nature of my job, I WILL upgrade my personal work PC to Vista and try it out with Office 2007... because I've got to evaluate it. I have 40 users who would not be able to get to grips with the likes of Ubuntu if their lives depended on it, and forcing them to stop using Windows would be career suicide.

[Don't talk to me about Macs. Yes, they work well, the OS is great, no virus protection needed, etc. HOWEVER, THEY'RE RIDICULOUSLY EXPENSIVE. I could never talk the senior management into doubling my IT budget. Never. Don't try to argue it with me, I've already tried and failed.]

I think that some of you folks are right on the money: more and more people will try some version of Linux when it becomes clear what a ripoff Vista is and Microsoft completely stops supporting XP.

But there's no way for me to FORCE my user base to switch. They can barely use their PCs *now*! A blanket, company-wide switch to any build of Linux would grind our business to a halt. I'd have to do some serious training sessions for everyone, *starting with senior management* (the biggest Luddites in the whole company).

Even if I could demonstrate the business need / savings / logic / feasability of switching to Linux, they would still balk because they themselves (senior managers) would be terrified of it.

My only option is to do what my friend down South is doing - switch to some build of Linux (probably Ubuntu or Knoppix) on all my servers and leave the client workstations running XP Pro. Of course, that still leaves the question of 'what to do when XP reaches end of life?' and I have to go for a Linux/Vista mix.

The prospect of trying Vista doesn't fill me with joy, honestly, but I'm going to have to get on with it. I'm trying to earn a living here and I can't do it by pushing Linux on a bunch of terrified older users who can barely hold a mouse.

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I agree

by Steffi28 In reply to The Real World

This will always be the problem, there are far too many technophobes out there for Micro$oft not to be the number one OS, its the most common OS for that reason only.

If everyone was willing to learn and picked up new software easily, we would never have to use Micro$oft, and maybe just maybe then when they no longer had the majority would they sort themselves out and produce something decent.

But until the day comes when people can pick up an OS and know how to use it within a few minutes Windows is always going to have the majority. Unfortunatly.

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To help you keep your sanity or what little is left

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to The Real World

When it comes to Vista do the following. Go to the nearest Gun Shop and buy a 44 Magnum and 1 round of Ammo. Then when the cooling off time has passed take it to work put the 1 round into the chamber unlock the safeties and hold the weapon to your head and pull the trigger. It will painless and you'll not have the constant feeling of bashing your head against a brick wall that you will have testing Vista. You'll never want to deploy it as it stands at the moment as it makes some old Command Line Unix look brilliant.

Because of all the improved security you can only share the Public Folder on C Drive not great for networking but excellent for Home Users who only have the one computer. Mind you XP wasn't much better when it was first released as practically nothing worked with it either.

But what you need to do is load any Mission Critical Business Applications and then if they actually load see if they will run. Most will not so at this point in time it's not a viable option. Even the Accounting Plug in for Office 2007 isn't Vista Compatible as it runs on SQL 2005 which isn't Vista Compatible so while it looks great on XP if fails miserably on Vista.

As things stand XP is going to be around for a long time to come as even Dell who was only selling Vista Versions are now realising that the market isn't there and is again offering XP as an option to new buyers.

By all means if the Boss is willing to shell out for a new Test Machine buy one loaded with Vista but make sure that you can get XP Drivers for it before you buy it so that it will be usable before the Tax Cycle runs it's course and the computer gets written off without being used. It's fun to play with and looks nice but doesn't run much that is of any importance to most business and the current Accounting Packages don't work all that well on the thing so that alone is grounds not to deploy.

I got one company using Knoppix by telling them that 1 NB that I was working with was a new version of Windows and had everything that they needed installed. I didn't even give them the Root Password and after 1 month they wanted every computer in the place except for the Reliable Windows Server switched over to this new form of Windows. Of course the Server in question was running Debian so it was literally unbreakable and didn't need constant reboots it just sat there in a corner and was forgotten about till the next power failure.

I had Code Weavers loaded onto the thing to run MYOB which was the only program that they needed that wasn't directly available in Linux I just told them that Knoppix was a Development Version of the Next Windows. Currently as the system has worked perfectly and had no failures they don't want it touched in any form so it's staying the way that it is and they are none the wiser. After all the OS isn't important to the end user it's the software that they need to run that is important so with Open Office they already have 90% of all that they need right there then with FF Web & E-Mail clients are both available for use in Windows and they where using them so they didn't even notice a difference and they do like the ability to have a different program running in each of the 4 Desktops Something that they are looking forward to when they buy their next lot of new computers in about 18 months time.

The last time that M$ rang me attempting to get me to sell them Pirate Software on a complete computer I offered to install a copy of Open Office and that came in under their Max Price limit that couldn't be exceeded but if I had of put on OEM Windows and Office just the cost of the software would have exceeded the price of the entire computer. The give away is when you are rung asked for a price of a new computer but it has to be able to read and write Excel is a dead give away as that means that they need some form of Office and even the base version isn't all that cheap.

Of course the fact that I don't deal with the public and only do Small to Medium Business computers is a dead give away as well but it was just after the third time that I had been reported for selling Pirate XP in a 2,500 Site License Volume License as it had again spat up a message that the Product Key was invalid and the Software XP Pro in this case was a Pirate Copy. This was when WGA was installed and also happened when SP1 & SP2 where installed. The fact that this is a Government Department and I didn't sell them anything but my staff expertise in setting up the network correctly after the Governments IT section refused to deal with them and I was recommended by M$ didn't help. But I know that after proving a Bureaucrat wrong the third report was just out of Spite to get back at me and my company as she had been proved wrong when SP2 was deployed and shown up as not knowing what she was doing. Actually I don't care about these reports as all that happens is that it takes far longer to get a New Product Key out of M$ so they where only hurting themselves and in the case of the last report 2 weeks after the upgrade to SP2 they had every workstation in the place lock up and be unusable. Any Idea just how long it takes to reload 2,500 workstations?

And of course I wouldn't touch them till I got a replacement Product Key that would work with WGA so they waited 3 weeks because the system admin reported the Pirate Software and I didn't push the case I just rang M$ asked for a new Product Key and gave then the Batch Number off the Original Install CD and the Order Number from M$. The legal department then worked through the mess and eventually sent out a new Product Key to me and not the Department.


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Why switch from XP

by JamesRL In reply to The Real World

With XP SP2, a good anti virus program and a decent firewall for your whole network, what are the compelling reasons to switch to Vista? What benefit will it bring your users? Sure aero glass is pretty, but will any work get done any faster because of it?
Sure Vista claims security improvements, but if your network is pretty secure already, do you want to spend the time and effort securing the desktop, or spend the same time securing your network?

XP pro won't reach end of life for years. Windows 2000 workstation still gets security updates. You will get a years notice when it will be end of life.

I don't see the business logic in moving from XP to Vista, unless and until there are good apps that will run on Vista and not XP.


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But James

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Why switch from XP

All the advertising says that it's better.

Actually it might be an issue if this is the year that the Tax Cycle ends for a company and most of their hardware is going to be replaced I'm sure that the Bean Counters could come up with a compelling reason to deploy Vista. Like make this work or find a new job and get the hell out of here. :^0

Personally I'll be using XP for quite some time yet though.


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My company will sell install and support thousands of PCs this year.

by JamesRL In reply to But James

And we currently have no plans to sell a Vista one.

We are going through the process of testing (once we get all the "final" device drivers) our apps with Vista. And I'm sure that we will support Vista at some time.

But I just don't yet see the need.


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"Make this work or find a new job". Sure, here is my resignation letter

by Why Me Worry? In reply to But James

and please point me in the direction of the HR office so that I can give them a big "GO F**K YOURSELVES" on my way out as I laugh my *** off, watching their network go to sh*t with Vista.

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Hey don't knock VISTA

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to "Make this work or find a ...

I'm so happy that it's now available and being deployed by at least one local Government Agency here as I've told them No I'm Not Supporting Vista and Have No Plans To So find Some Other Fool to Do your Work. Even their own IT department will have nothing to do with them.

I got sucked in just after XP was rolled out when it was first available and it was a mess, since then I've been reported to M$ 3 times for selling Pirate Software namely XP Pro as a Volume License for a 2,500 workstation office. It doesn't matter that I didn't sell the Software or even supply any hardware as the government has it's own procurement offices I got the blame when the Volume License Version came up with Invalid Product keys on SP1, SP2 and WGA. With them adopting Vista I've finally been able to get rid of them and the stupid Bureaucrats who work there. I'm actually quite thankful to M$ for getting me out of that mess as I don't need the problems that come along with working there and I'll still be getting payments for work performed for about 2 years they are such good payers that I just don't need the problems associated with supporting their messes. :^0


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Management & public users

by willda In reply to Why switch from XP

are the only reasons to switch. I personally have been looking at several different Linux distros for my pc @ work. I have a couple mission critical apps that require Windoze but I can work around that. But we are a Public Library that provides computer classes (Thank you very much but no, I don't want to teach Grandma & Grandpa Kettle how to use a mouse) ;^)
The Director came to me and asked about Vista and I told her that deploying Vista for at least a year was not in the cards. At that point she thought it was reasonable to wait. She came back 2 days later and told me to get myself ready because we were going to deploy it but, not on my time schedule. I wasn't too pleased but she's the boss and I would like to keep my job long enough to retire (10 more years isn't too long to put up with the public is it?) Seriously, I knew it was coming, even though XP will be supported for several years to come. The desire to have the latest & greatest bites everyone (new car, truck, house, etc) Personally, I'd rather have a new table saw or lathe than a copy of Vista but, that's not my hobby, it's my job.

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by CharlieSpencer In reply to Management & public users

Did your boss offer a reason for the decision to implement it now? I can't believe a public library has enough to spend that it wouldn't want to put off this transition as long as possible. If it's for the training classes, most people are still using 2K and XP, especially home users. The users who feel compelled to upgrade when MS releases a new version are rarely those who need training.

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"Competing with the Jones'" corporate mentality

by Why Me Worry? In reply to Reason?

And a lot of this stupidity comes from the fact that some ignorant manager in IT with absolutely no technical background has this false notion that running Windows Vista will make the company on the "leading edge" of technology and put it ahead of its competitors. Actually, installing Windows Vista will put the company on the "bleeding edge" of technology and the IT director will be saying "Hasta La Vista" to his job when his assinine decision to implement Vista results in serious downtime and loss of revenue to the corporation.

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