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Windows 7

The Results Are In – Windows 7 Migration Survey Finds that Planning Plays a Key Role in Successful Upgrades

Created: 21 Oct 2010 • Updated: 03 Jun 2014
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If you’re preparing to migrate your company’s system over to Windows 7 – or even just considering it – chances are you’re going to want to talk to some people who have been there and done that. Getting the inside scoop from those who have migrated can give you a heads-up on potential speed bumps, hurdles to avoid and valuable insight that can save your company time and money.

Luckily, Symantec did all the asking around for you in the 2010 Windows 7 Migration Survey. We have the information you need from more than 1,300 of your fellow IT managers across the globe to make your Windows 7 migration a success. Take a look at some of our key findings:

Preparation for your migration

Respondents said that their IT teams spent an average of 10 hours in preparation for the upgrade – including planning, training and performing pilot tests. More than 80 percent of companies said that this planning was helpful in facilitating the migration, as well as minimizing the cost. Eighty percent said that training was beneficial, and 80 percent said that performing a pilot test was helpful in the migration. In addition, surveyed IT managers said that it was important to capture important information such as user files and documents, links to network drives and email prior to migrating.

Recommendations from those who’ve done it

For our survey respondents, the migration typically involved half of the IT staff, and if an organization had at least 10 PCs, it was worth automating the process. Many organizations said they used their upgrade to Windows 7 as an opportunity to implement standardization, virtual desktop interface and additional security measures. In order to handle applications that are not yet compatible with the new operating system, 71 percent of respondents simply replaced them.


Overall, 78 percent of IT teams said that the actual migration process was smooth, and 63 percent said it was easier than their last migration. Out of the 62 percent of organizations who set ROI goals, 90 percent achieved them. Most organizations ran into delays such as application incompatibility and budget constraints – but most of the organizations surveyed also achieved their key motivations for making the transition. (Some of the motivations they cited were increased performance, better end-user experience and increased reliability.)

Best – and worst – practices

The amount of preparation time invested by IT teams played a key role in how much the migration negatively impacted their organizations. The lower tier of organizations – whose IT managers spent an average of nine hours in preparation for the upgrade – said that their users were offline for six hours during the migration and that only 25 percent of users were extremely satisfied. On the other hand, the top tier refers to organizations whose IT managers spent 20 hours on average in preparation – resulting in users being offline only two hours and 60 percent of the users being extremely satisfied.

When you do decide to migrate, having these key findings in your back pocket should increase your chances of having a smooth and efficient migration to Windows 7. Why not use other experiences to help you to foresee potential issues, avoid pitfalls and utilize the most reliable approach to your migration?

The findings above just scratch the surface of what we found out from the survey. Click here to view the full results. An interactive game highlighting these findings can be found here, and the slide deck is posted here.