Windows 10: Easing the Burden on IT and Improving the User Experience

May 26, 2016
Editorial Staff

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Editorial Staff

Gartner forecasts that Windows 10 will become the most widely installed Windows version ever, with even faster take-rates than for Windows 7 when it debuted in 2009.

Many enterprises will start evaluation pilots in 2016, with at least half of enterprises starting production deployments in 2017 due to the following factors:

  • Strong compatibility with Windows 7 applications and devices, along with awareness that in January 2020 Microsoft will end its support for Windows 7.
  • User-centric computing will evolve at an accelerating pace, along with increasingly device-independent, remote applications delivery.
  • Touchscreens will ship on one-third of all notebooks by 2018, as the cost of touchscreens continues to fall and the numbers of touch-optimized applications rise.1

As we’ve said in prior posts on redesigning the workplace to suit the next generation employee, Windows 10 was built with the vision of cloud and BYOD in mind.

Windows 10 is a significant step forward in design and engineering. Managing a fragmented client landscape is lessened, enabling IT to focus on more value-added initiatives and projects for their organizations. These include:

Versatile and familiar user interface. For users, the universal application architecture means that applications will work across any preferred device, with the best UI features from Windows 7 and Windows 8. Additional features include:

  • Cortana for text and voice input
  • The improved Microsoft Edge internet browser
  • Optimized mouse and keyboard synchronization with touchscreen

Improved security. Two-factor authentication technology, based on the widely accepted industry standards of the FIDO Alliance, greatly improves enterprise data security. Additional security features include:

  • Windows Hello for biometric authentication
  • Enhanced Enterprise security with Device Guard
  • Microsoft Azure Rights Management (RMS) to enhance compliance with data privacy and protection regulations.

Enhanced management. Improved identity management across a user’s various work and personal (i.e., BYOD) devices by ensuring admin tools like System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) remain compatible with Windows 10 – and even enhancing them where possible. Additional management improvements include:

  • Azure Active Directory Premium through the Enterprise Cloud Suite
  • Simultaneous registration of personal devices in MDM solutions, such as Microsoft Intune Mobility Management

Windows as a Service (WaaS)

Windows as a Service (WaaS) is about patching and updating security fixes as well as delivering new functionality, according to an organization’s preferred service option. These are called “branches” which include:

  • Current Branch (CB) – provides updates upon General Availability
  • Current Branch for Business (CBB) – lets businesses delay updates from 4 to 12 months
  • Long Term Service Branching (LTSB) – allows a business with SA on Windows to put off making any Windows updates indefinitely

This flexibility in determining when to launch the latest version enables organizations to troubleshoot any potential errors.

Windows 10 also offers three main deployments options to support business flexibility:

  1. Wipe and Load – The standard approach to an image-based process.
  2. In-place Upgrade – Microsoft’s suggested method for upgrading from Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 to Windows 10 by using the Windows installation program: setup.exe. This automatically preserves all data, settings, applications, and drivers from the previous Windows version.
  3. Dynamic Provisioning – With Windows SA, organizations can easily upgrade a new device from Windows 10 Professional to Windows 10 Enterprise through a simple reboot.

We at SoftwareONE agree with many leading market research firms that Windows 10 will live up to the hype of being a major milestone in IT history. Check out our Tech Talk Radio Show on June 8th where myself and some other SoftwareONE Tech Experts discuss Windows 10, Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS), Enterprise Cloud Suite (ECS), and Office 365!

This blog was only an excerpt from our more in-depth whitepaper, “Windows 10: Helping IT Manage Expanding User Options.” To download this FREE whitepaper, simply click the banner below and complete the form.

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