Draw on the service desk to roll out Windows 7

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One of the biggest areas of discussion for IT at the moment is Windows 7, Research carried out for Dell KACE has over 58% of companies looking to move over before the end of 2010, and 46% are not waiting for Service Pack 1 to come through before they migrate over.

While individual consumers have been finding it easy to move over, companies have a bigger challenge. Whether you have five or five hundred desktops, moving them all over to a new OS is a big deal. The service desk can play an important role in making this go smoothly before, during and after the migration takes place.

Ahead of a migration, the organisation has to know what IT assets it has. Knowing what condition desktops are in allows the company to see what it can move over easily and where there may be more challenging assets to migrate. For companies with a service desk in place, the CMDB can help to provide this data.

Some desktops might be too old to move over, and need either replacement or upgrades. Applications may not run on the new OS, either due to license issues or not being supported; the underlying IT infrastructure may need an update to support the new OS as well.

Based on this information, organisations can prepare themselves for a move. During the migration the service desk can provide information to the whole organisation, so that there are no surprises encountered during the move.

Once the implementation of Windows 7 is complete, the service desk will undoubtedly be the first port of call for users with questions on their new environment. From finding where that command button has moved to, through to getting users familiar with any new functionality that can help them be more productive, the service desk will have a role to play alongside any training programme that the company implements.

By looking at how IT can make the whole process easier, the service desk can play a critical role in any Windows 7 implementation being successful. For companies interested in moving over to Windows 7, I’ll be discussing this topic at the Service Desk and IT Support show this week – if you are at the event, feel free to stop by the Dell KACE stand, #626.

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