With Windows 7
having hit public Beta stage and Microsoft already hard at work on the Release Candidate build, the upcoming RTM development milestone and, subsequently, the availability of the operating system raises inherent questions that throw the next iteration of Windows in the same arena as its precursors. Even before the GA launch of Windows 7, end-users and businesses have to choose between migrating to the latest Windows release and sticking with Windows XP for now, or upgrading to Windows Vista and only subsequently to Win 7. For some consumers, especially businesses, the Windows 7 waiting game has already started, according to a report from Forrester.
“IT decision-makers don’t have an entirely rosy outlook for Windows Vista. We found that 15% plan on skipping Windows Vista entirely and going straight to Windows 7 soon after its release in 2010. And another 22% still have no definitive plans for deploying Windows Vista, and 6% simply don’t know yet what their plans are,” Forrester analyst Benjamin Gray
revealed in the “Enterprises Warming To Windows Vista” report, according to Mary Jo Foley
According to statistics from Forrester, which has surveyed 962 IT decision makers, Windows 7 is still installed on no less than 71% of computers in companies in North America and Europe. The same survey reveals that Linux accounts for 2%, Windows 2000 for 10%, and Mac OS X for 3%. Windows Vista adoption is only at 10%, but companies plan to accelerate uptake in 2009. Microsoft has yet to confirm that Windows 7 is planned for launch by the end of 2009 and give customers a reason to skip Windows Vista.
“Thirty-one percent of IT decision-makers reported that they have already begun their migration, and Windows Vista is now powering just fewer than 10% of all PCs within enterprises. Despite considerable interest in Windows 7
— Windows Vista's eventual successor that's slated for release in early 2010 — Windows Vista is finally shaping out to be the operating system that dethrones Windows XP. While most IT managers are anticipating the struggle with managing their upcoming dual-OS environments of Windows XP and Windows Vista, some recognize it will only get worse as they are required to more broadly support Macs, Linux, and even consumer PCs as a result of Tech Populism's impact on the client domain,” Gray added.
Windows 7 Beta is available for download here
Product keys to activate Windows 7 Beta are available here
Windows Server 2008 R2 Beta (Windows 7 Server Beta) is available for download here