Is your environment on the brink of migrating to Windows 7? The good folks at 1E have some advice to share about that scenario, and beyond that OS, they have some planning tips to keep in mind for those of you waiting to make the leap to Windows 8.

Here are 1E's best practices for migrating to Windows 7:

  • Optimize your current systems management or software distribution platform or solution—If the underlying systems management platform isn’t working, you won't be successful with your Windows 7 project. Ensure that the desktops and PCs to which you're deploying Windows 7 are in good health.
  • Rationalize applications before remediating or upgrading them—Why spend money on upgrading applications to Windows 7 if you aren't even sure users use them? Don’t think of application rationalization as a separate step or an additional process. Integrate and automate application rationalization with the operating system deployment (OSD) tasks.
  • Rationalize/eliminate dedicated hardware and caching systems for software/OS distribution—Today, you don't need expensive, static, and inflexible hardware-based caching solutions. Build and optimize your infrastructure not just for Windows 7 but for Windows 8 and beyond.
  • Empower the end user—IT doesn't have to own the entire Windows 7 migration process. Let your users decide when to migrate to Windows 7. Give them a guided experience with applications such as Shopping. Get IT to automate as much as they can and then get out of the way by empowering the end user.
  • Engage vendors and resources who have worked on Windows 7 projects before.

And if you're already planning your Windows 8 upgrade, check out these tips:

  • Windows 8 won’t just be rolled out to PCs and laptops, but a myriad of handheld and mobile devices—The addition of mobile devices makes the IT environment even more complex. The number of variables in terms of hardware models and configurations that will need to be supported will put unprecedented demand on IT and the systems management infrastructure. You need to review your systems management strategy and ensure that you invest in platforms that can support PCs, laptops, and mobile devices.
  • Most organizations will embrace the cloud even more in the years to come, and Windows 8 will make that transition easier—When moving to the cloud, organizations will want to reduce the number of applications they own and support in-house and move as much as possible to the cloud.(when moving to Windows 8). When they do so, they should focus on application rationalization first and then application remediation. The foundational elements won't change much between Windows 7 and Windows 8, resulting in reduced cost and associated headaches for organizations concerned about application compatibility.
  • Security and user profile management will be key when moving to Windows 8—The lines between corporate and personal devices are blurring. With more and more organizations encouraging their employees to work from home, the end user expects his or her experience to be seamless when moving from one device to another. To provide that seamless experience, IT will need to ensure that end users can pick up a device of their choice and gain access to their corporate resources in a secure manner.
  • Facebook, Twitter, and Google are dictating the look and feel of enterprise applications and the way end users will consume information—With the explosion in the volume of data, the typical “matrix style” reports can no longer present data to end users that can be easily understood and consumed. The advent of ‘info-graphics” will make it easier for the end user to consume complex information in a format they can relate to easily. Users want to "touch and feel" their data! The mouse as an interface will make way for touchscreens even more aggressively as organizations move to Windows 8. Windows 8 is a great opportunity to face-lift enterprise applications.

For more information about 1E and its compelling Nomad product, check out the company's website.