SHI, contractor for the State Large Account Reseller agreement for software, has announced that Windows 7 will be available for purchase by K-State departments as of Sept. 1. Note that this is an upgrade license only (a Microsoft Windows or Vista operating system must already be in place on the desktop/notebook computer to install Windows 7).
Pricing is expected to be similar to Vista products, both for the license and the media. License-key distribution will also continue in a similar manner.
Harvard Townsend, K-State’s chief information security officer, urges people to delay putting Windows 7 into production and only buy it now for testing. He cites several reasons:
- It’s a major new operating system, so the software and applications you normally use may not work, although Microsoft claims compatibility with applications and hardware supported by Windows Vista. Don’t believe it — test EVERY application you use.
- You may have to buy new versions of applications to get them to work with Windows 7, which is a problem in this year of reduced budgets.
- It requires Trend Micro OfficeScan 10, which is available but currently being tested by SIRT before it’s supported campuswide.
- It’s different, so people may need training or at least experience a time of frustration and reduced productivity while they learn.
Since new computers are expected to start shipping with Windows 7 after Oct. 22, it’s a good idea for system administrators to get a copy of Windows 7 now to 1) start testing every application used by their department, and 2) update their antivirus infrastructure to OfficeScan 10. Watch InfoTech Tuesday for more information on the latter.