CIOs give Windows Server 2008 a cautious welcome

Half of a CIO user panel have said they plan to move to the OS at their next refresh or upgrade cycle, but others were more cautious

Microsoft's newly launched Windows Server 2008 has been given a cautious welcome by customers.

Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer launched Windows Server 2008 this week, calling it the most significant Windows Server release since the first version.

ZDNet.co.uk sister site silicon.com put together a 12-strong CIO user panel to gauge reaction to the launch. Half of the panel said they plan to move to Windows Server 2008 at their next refresh or upgrade cycle.

Some early adopter customers include General Motors, Newham Borough Council and Tube Lines.

Gavin Whatrup, group IT director at marketing and advertising agency Creston, said his organisation will make selective upgrades.

Whatrup said: "Of most interest are new features around improving resilience and failover and clustering in more environments. Also, the coincidence of the release of Windows Server 2008 with the release of 2007 Exchange, and their common architecture and administration, is important to our decision."

Chris Robinson, European IT partner at property consultancy Davis Langdon, said his firm plans to upgrade to Windows Server 2008 sometime in the next 12 months.

Others are more cautious. Paul Hibberd, head of Wintel services for investment bank Mitsubishi UFJ Securities International, said: "As with all major upgrades, this will need to be heavily researched and tested, and is not included in the plans for the next 12 months. Current focus is on making more efficient use of CPUs by the use of virtualisation."

Alastair Behenna, chief information officer at recruitment company Harvey Nash, called it an "interesting release" but said the jury is still out, while Mike Roberts, IT director at private Harley Street establishment The London Clinic, said his organisation will wait until the arrival of Service Pack 2.

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