Telco iiNet expects to commence rolling out
Microsoft's next-generation Windows Vista and Office 2007
products to its internal desktop fleet in the middle of next
"We're part of the rapid deployment program. So we're actually
trialling it already -- I've got a laptop with them sitting on
the desk in front of me," iiNet chief information officer David Dans told ZDNet
Australia via telephone this week.
"We expect the rollout will commence ... probably starting in
August of 2007. We've actually already got a limited rollout on the current release of Vista and Office 2007."
iiNet has some 600-700 PCs spread across four locations in Australia
and New Zealand.
Dans said iiNet had to do some work on its back-end systems
before the company would be ready to implement the new Microsoft
Dans anticipates the upgraded tools in Vista will deliver a
reduction in the administrative overhead of supporting iiNet's
desktop fleet. In addition, he is looking forward to working
with Vista's new security framework.
In terms of Office 2007, Dans believes Microsoft's existing
Office products were getting "a bit tired". "There's some
challenges in Excel and a few other things that it's simply not
up to," he said.
For example, in iiNet's testing Excel 2007 has proved
"substantially faster" than its predecessors. Dans said Office
2007 seemed also to be taking a lot more advantage of dual-core
CPUs if they were available.
That testing has led iiNet to standardise on dual-core CPUs on
Vista-capable machines for all of its new desktop purchases
outside of its call centres, which don't use CPU-intensive
"I think the payback period's going to be incredibly short on
that, just in terms of working with a large spreadsheet or
something like that," Dans said of the dual-core decision.
iiNet is so far part of a relatively small group of large
Australian organisations keen to adopt Vista, Office 2007 and/or
Microsoft's collaboration suite Exchange 2007.
However, many organisations have now changed their purchasing
policies to make sure any new desktop machines they buy will be
able to run Vista when they eventually migrate to the new