DEPLOYMENT OF SECURITY WITH WINDOWS 7

SALMA NISAR
June 15 - 21, 2009

In light of the 5C's of the current Computing Trends i.e. Consumerization, Carbon-Neutral, Contingency, Costs and Compliance: Windows 7 - the next version of Windows builds on the foundation we built in Windows Vista to address the challenging needs of our customers. Microsoft introduced a drastic paradigm shift with Vista with some deep changes around Security, Drivers, Deployment, and Networking. While these changes had an important and measurable improvement especially in terms of Security, they had an impact on compatibility. The road to Windows 7 however has been marked in a predictable and planned manner, minimizing deployment hurdles and cashing on the investments made during Windows Vista deployment.

This also means that customers still using Windows XP should expect a similar level of compatibility between Windows XP and Windows 7 as there is between Windows XP and Windows Vista.

With Windows 7, we have introduced and shaped the features to meet the requirements of our tech-savvy as well as the not so tech-savvy customers. The shorter boot-up and shutdown times while launching your favorite application along with performance improvements are something any user would love. If you are a music fan, Windows Media Player 12's design and user interface and the ability to work with photos in addition to videos are some of the features that would make you wish for WMP 12 to be available in other versions of Windows. Likewise, interactive thumbnail features and the ability to rearrange your Taskbar buttons just the way you want are particularly interesting for an everyday user.

Sometimes we set up programs in a certain way and would like to set a priority over the Start button, now you can with a simple drag and drop action rearrange shortcuts and running applications on the fly. The Taskbar adapts to the most predominated RGB value of an icon, making each program use a distinguishing colour effect when hovered over.

For corporate clients, Windows 7 introduces some very powerful features to help the users stay productive from anywhere, enhance security, and control while enabling the IT professional to streamline PC Management. Some of these features are highlighted below:

- Direct Access: New network paradigm enables the same experience for users connecting from inside or outside the office network without the need for VPN

- Branch Cache: Frees up network bandwidth by caching files or web content accessed by users locally. Opening a document in the corporate file server that has already been downloaded will take seconds for the next user to open because it would have been 'Branch Cached'!

- Search Foundation: Provides a unified search experience so users can find information on intranet portals - maximizing the return on organizational investment. You can pre-populate links to appear on user's Start menu or in the Explorer to search sites that support Open Search Protocol

- BitLocker to Go: Protects data stored on portable media as such that only authorized users can read the data even if the media are lost.

- AppLocker: Eliminates unwanted applications from your network and enforces application standardization right from Windows.

Windows Vista introduced several new tools to improve the overall deployment experience and enhanced many pre-existing tools. For Windows 7, we continue to invest in deployment tools and incorporate the new functionalities introduced for Windows 7. Tools such as the Microsoft Assessment and Planning Solution Accelerator will continue to assess your hardware readiness, the Application Compatibility Toolkit will assess application compatibility and the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit automates deployment processes with its powerful task sequencing engine and provides detailed deployment guidance.

For more information regarding Windows 7, visit www.microsoft.com/windows7 or contact us at mspkinfo@microsoft.com