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Microsoft: Forrester's Vista Views 'Schizophrenic'

Microsoft is stepping up its efforts to defend Vista from what it feels are unfair critics, and recently went on the offensive against a Forrester analyst.

In the latest sign of Microsoft's growing frustration with Vista critics, Chris Flores, a director with the Windows Client communications team, hotly disputed a recent Forrester report that claims Vista just isn't making much headway with business users, characterizing Forrester's findings as "schizophrenic."

In the report, Forrester analyst Thomas Mendel said Vista has been "rejected" by enterprises and suggests that customers consider skipping Vista in favor of Windows 7, which Microsoft plans to release in early 2010.

Flores says Mendel's findings contradict those of Forrester analyst Ben Gray, who in an April report advised customers not to skip Vista in favor of Windows 7.

"Given that there's a mountain of evidence to refute this report -- including multiple reports from Forrester and other top-tier analysts -- this appears to be more focused on making sensationalist statements, rather than offering a thoughtful industry perspective, based on conversations with IT operations professionals or deep knowledge of enterprise deployment cycles," Flores wrote.

But while Forrester's Gray offered five reasons why companies should upgrade to Vista, his rationale wasn't exactly brimming with pro-Vista enthusiasm. Gray focused on the uncertainty around the continued availability of XP and the lack of a roadmap for Windows 7 (which Microsoft has since clarified).

"Ironically, one of Microsoft's biggest weaknesses -- the unpredictable release schedule of its desktop operating systems -- will likely spur adoption of Windows Vista as a result of this lack of faith in Microsoft delivering Windows 7 on time," Gray wrote in the April report.

Microsoft is clearly stepping up its efforts to defend Vista from its detractors, with company executives drilling home the message that Microsoft has now sold more than 180 million Vista licenses, and businesses are starting to migrate to the OS.

Last week at Microsoft's annual Financial Analyst Meeting, Bill Veghte, senior vice president of Online Services and the Windows Business Group, said Vista service pack 1 has triggered "strong acceleration" of Vista adoption in enterprises, a trend that's also starting to trickle down to the upper midmarket.

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