| Will Windows 7 be released sooner than we think? Is Vista more secure than many realize?
Welcome to the searchWinIT.com Windows Week in Review podcast transcript, for January 25, 2008. To listen to this podcast, visit the searchWinIT.com
IN THIS PODCAST:
Leading off, while IT shops continue to consider their options for Migrating to Windows Vista, rumors about Microsoft's NEXT desktop OS have once again started to hit the Internet.
The OS currently known as Windows 7 was originally scheduled for release in 2010. But now rumors are circulating that we could possibly see the new system in the latter half of 2009.
While thus far, Microsoft has had no official comment on Windows 7, LiveSide.net reports that a blog poster at Neowin claims to have already installed an early Windows 7 build. While the report is still yet to be verified, the post cites highlights of the OS to include improvements to network connection tools and Windows Live, as well as better battery mileage.
The blog post is not the only new info we have on Windows 7 however. Australia's APC magazine has actually seen the roadmap for the system's release, which is made up of THREE key milestones.
As far as progress goes, APC reports that one milestone build has already reached a number of key partners who are busy validating code, while the follow-up builds will arrive later in the year.
In response, Microsoft remained tightlipped by issuing the following statement:
" We're continuing to work with our customers and partners on the development of Windows 7, the next version of the client operating system. We're not sharing additional information at this time; instead, we're focused on helping customers today get the most value from their PCs using Windows Vista, and we're encouraged by the response and adoption so far."
And the company wasn't lying. This week Microsoft used new data supporting enhanced security as a reason why IT shops should make the move to Vista.
According to Microsoft security execs, Vista has recorded about half as many vulnerabilities in its first full year of availability as Windows XP did in its first 12 months.
ComputerWorld reports that vulnerability and patch statistics show that Vista logged 66 bugs between November 2006 and November 2007, 30 of which had not yet been patched.
This is a major improvement compared to the first year of Windows XP which saw 129 vulnerabilities, 54 of which were not fixed by the end of that 12-month period.
Austin Wilson, a director in Microsoft's Windows client group, expanded on these sentiments in a blog, stating that Vista is definitely the most secure version of Windows to date.
In addition, Wilson cited User Account Control and IE7's "Protected Mode" as keys to the operating system's enhanced security. ComputerWorld reports that the "Protected Mode" for Internet Explorer is a sandbox-style security provision available only in the Vista edition of the browser.
Jeff Jones, a security strategy director in Microsoft's Trustworthy Computing group, said that the company's effort to change the way it handles patches this year has also helped to reduce workload for admins with Vista compare to those using XP.
In other news, IBM held its annual Lotusphere, conference in Orlando this week, where Microsoft announced the release of an updated version of Transporter Suite for Lotus Domino.
SearchWinIT reports that update is designed to help IT shops move to Exchange Server, SharePoint and Office and away from Notes and Domino.
The tool was previously able to function in organizations with tens of thousands of employees, but is now being tested in at least one organization featuring as many as 200,000 users.
In addition, Microsoft announced that more than 300 companies representing 2.8 million employees began migrating to the company's collaboration and content management system in the last six months of 2007.
ComputerWorld reports that number of users adopting Outlook, Exchange and SharePoint Server is up 164% from the 2006, many of which, according to Microsoft, are were previously Notes and Domino users.
Of course this attempt to obtain new users is not a one-way street, as IBM also offers free tools for migrating toward Lotus and away from Microsoft's products.
In addition, IBM spoke of performance improvements for Domino in both versions 8.0.1 and 8.5. SearchDomino reports that 8.0.1 users can expect a 30% bandwidth reduction as well as a 30% CPU reduction.
As for version 8.5, Domino chief architect Russ Holden announced that back-up costs would be cut by 35%.
Holden also said that Domino admins would experience greater directory freedom and improved identity management for password resets.
Domino version 8.0.1 is expected to be released in February, while 8.5 will ship in mid 2008.
And finally, last week we reported that on February 12, Microsoft will be updating businesses using Internet Explorer 6 to IE7 through its automatic update service.
However, for those who are looking for details on how to configure WSUS to avoid the update and stick with IE6, can find in-depth instructions on Microsoft's support site in article ID 946202.
The workaround involves making sure that WSUS is not configured to "auto-approve" update rollup packages.
And that's it for this week. We'll be back next week with more news from the World of Windows. Until then be sure to check out SearchWinIT.com throughout the week for all the latest Windows news and expert advice.
This was first published in January 2008