IT analyst firm Gartner has told businesses to skip Vista and prepare to roll out Windows 7.
Companies have traditionally been advised to wait until the first Service Pack of an operating system arrives before considering migration.
However, Gartner is urging organisations that aren't already midway through Vista deployments to give the much-maligned operating system a miss.
"Skip Vista and target Windows 7," Gartner analysts Michael Silver and Stephen Kleynhans advise in a research paper. "Preparing for Vista will require the same amount of effort as preparing for Windows 7, so at this point, targeting Windows 7 would add less than six months to the schedule and would result in a plan that is more politically palatable, better for users, and results in greater longevity."
Even businesses that are midway through planning a Vista migration are urged to consider scrapping the deployment. "Consider switching to Windows 7 if it would delay deployment by six months or less," the pair advise. "The further you are withyour Vista plans, the more sense it makes to continue."
Companies who are in the midst of a deployment should carry on, the Gartner team says, although they should plan to move again to Windows 7 in "late 2010 or early 2011".
The Gartner experts say all companies should move off Windows XP by the end of 2012 to avoid problems with application compatibility.