Windows 7 Upgrades: Six Steps to Getting Your Apps Ready

When migrating to Windows 7, IT pros need to understand what business applications are truly being used, which need fixing and which are compatible with Windows 7. Here are six steps every IT organization should take when preparing apps for Windows 7.

As Windows XP slowly dies off and Windows 7 gains more credibility for its security, networking and virtualization features, many businesses are preparing to make the transition as painless and affordable as possible.

Enterprises are not exactly stampeding to Windows 7 upgrades, but more Windows 7 plans are in motion for 2011. A recent Forrester survey of 800 IT decision-makers reveals that 75 percent of commercial PCs are still running Windows XP — yet 46 percent of firms plan to migrate to Windows 7 in the next 12 months, and 42 percent plan to do it in 12 months or more.

A major part of affordably migrating to Windows 7 is preparing business applications for the upgrade. Organizations are using application virtualization to simplify app management and reduce costs. But still, many have no process for preparing applications for a Windows 7 migration in any reliable way, according to a new white paper by application usage management company Flexera Software.

Most operating system migrations, despite the eventual business benefits, are taxing on an entire organization, according to the Flexera white paper, creating project delays, budget over-runs and longer hours for IT.

A big reason businesses are held hostage by technology transitions, according to Flexera, is that IT approaches them as point-in-time projects without thinking about the future.

[ For complete coverage on Microsoft's Windows 7 operating system -- including hands-on reviews, video tutorials and advice on enterprise rollouts -- see CIO.com's Windows 7 Bible. ]

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