|October Is Windows 7 Month. Let's Celebrate by Upgrading to Linux.|
|Operating Systems - Microsoft|
|Written by Chris Smith|
|Friday, 02 October 2009 00:00|
Windows 7 is undoubtedly the best version of Windows ever, but is it the best direction?
October is a very special month in the world of computing, because on October 22, the new Windows 7 OS will arrive on new PCs and as a shrink-wrapped upgrade to the much-maligned Windows Vista. But is it really all that significant? Perhaps the greatest benefit will come as organizations review their desktop operating systems and consider open source.
Windows 7 has new navigation, search, backup, and storage features. It also supports touch-screen hardware and applications. Developers and hardware manufacturers surely will jump on touch-screen support. The feature has become increasingly popular through the broad adoption of the Apple iPhone, the T-Mobile myTouch 3G, and the Palm Pre. We expect a flurry of touch-screen announcements for all-in-one PCs and laptops, and both Lenovo and Fujitsu already have released laptops that incorporate multi-touch. Touch-screen systems likely will carry Windows Touch branding.
In designing the touch-screen features of Windows 7, Microsoft collaborated with Synaptics, which since 2008 has supported a set of common gestures on touchpads with its Synaptics Gesture Suite software. Microsoft collaborated with the company to standardize on these common gestures. So the movements will be the same in Windows 7 as they are on the Synaptics touchpad. Given the popularity of the touch-screen on the new smartphones, we can only bet that touch-screen technology will become increasingly pervasive. One has to wonder what effect this will have on modernization efforts surrounding the System i. It would seem to make it just that much harder to modernize existing 5250 green-screen applications, but no doubt someone will figure out a way to bring touch-screen to the System i. Though IBM is running tests now to see how well Windows 7 integrates with IBM i and Power Systems hardware, don't expect touch-screen support anytime soon.
There is little doubt that Windows 7 will be the best version of Windows ever. It has been tested by so many people around the world that there are hardly any surprises. As the Windows 7 engineering team says, a software product, particularly one as challenging as Windows 7, is never done. There reportedly are still little, somewhat inconsequential bugs in the product, but that's what service packs are for, right? At some point, you have to sign off on the product and say, it's done; let's go with it. And the individual Windows 7 engineering teams did that; they each signed off on the product as ready to release to manufacturing. Thank you.
The question IT managers are faced with, is, do I recommend upgrading from Windows XP or not? I think it's a no-brainer if you have Windows Vista, as the answer would be yes. From XP, however, the decision is a little more subtle. How big a budget do you have, and how happy do you want your users to be? If you have the money, go for it. Users will like it better than XP and may very well be "more productive." They also will be more secure. Yes, there are questions about compatibility with drivers and issues of whether to upgrade the hardware to 64-bit first. Most corporate computers today are running on 32-bit x86 processors. Do you do a straight upgrade to Windows 7 32-bit version and stay within the limit of 4 GB RAM, or do you upgrade the hardware to a 64-bit x86 processor so you can go beyond 4 GB? You might have two kinds of users, those who need 64-bit processing and those who don't. Perhaps you will choose to mix and match. Here are a few guidelines in deciding between the two versions.
Now that that is all settled, here is another idea: Consider upgrading to Linux. It's less expensive and will run everything that you currently do today. Just a thought…
|Last Updated on Friday, 02 October 2009 00:00|