From The EditorGet Ready for Windows Vista

WINDOWS VISTA IS CURRENTLY at release candidate stage, and it won't be long before the final release is sent to manufacturing. We've put together this special issue of TechNet Magazine to serve as a guide for those of you planning to evaluate and deploy the new operating system.

You've no doubt heard that you'll need to get all new machines to run Windows Vista. This is most likely not true. Windows Vista will be available in a number of different configurations: Business, Enterprise, Home Basic, Home Premium, and Ultimate. Guess which one gives you the ultimate experience!

All versions will provide improved security and reliability, but will be further tailored to provide the features most appropriate for its audience. You'll find info about these editions at Get Ready: The Editions.

The best way to gauge how your machine will run is to use the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor. This tool scans your machine and reports how it rates for CPU, memory, graphics, and accessories. Windows Vista will install only as much as your machine can handle, so if you're running an older graphics card you won't automatically get the shiny new Aero interface as seen on our cover. However, you'll still get the benefits of improved security, reliability, and more.

The new security features make it much harder to accidentally introduce malware onto a computer and much easier to take away those unnecessary administrator privileges. You may hear some unkind words muttered under the breath of your more "independent" users, but your response is easy-"Security comes first." Just the same, there could be a bit of a learning curve for your people, so download the release candidate and sandbox it for a while. You'll be better prepared for issues that come up down the road.

Speaking of preparation, it doesn't get much better than this magazine, supplemented by the rest of the TechNet program. You'll find many additional resources for IT pros charged with testing and deploying Windows Vista at Windows Vista Resources for IT Professionals. You can even get information right from the Windows Vista team at the Windows Vista Team Blog. The next 18 months are going to bring major changes to the desktop, and it pays to be prepared in advance.


Thank you to the following Microsoft technical experts: Derk Benisch, Steve Campbell, Mike Chan, George Holman, Khushru Irani, Kamal Janardhan, Michael Keigley, Mark Lawrence, David Lowe, Mike Lewis, Nathan Muggli, Michael Murgolo, Roger Wolter, and Andy Zeigler.

© 2008 Microsoft Corporation and CMP Media, LLC. All rights reserved; reproduction in part or in whole without permission is prohibited.