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  • 22 October 2010 11:36

Symantec Survey Reveals Thorough Planning for Upgrades to Windows 7 Delivers Better Outcomes

Symantec Corporation (Nasdaq: SYMC) today released the findings of its 2010 Windows 7 Migration Survey , which interviewed more than 1,300 IT managers from small to large organisations across the globe (including 120 from Australia) about their Windows 7 migrations including manpower requirements, processes and outcomes, as well as general migration best practices. The survey revealed that those organisations that invest the time in planning achieve better Windows 7 migration outcomes.

SYDNEY, Australia – 22 October 2010 – Symantec Corporation (Nasdaq: SYMC) today released the findings of its 2010 Windows 7 Migration Survey , which interviewed more than 1,300 IT managers from small to large organisations across the globe (including 120 from Australia) about their Windows 7 migrations including manpower requirements, processes and outcomes, as well as general migration best practices. The survey revealed that those organisations that invest the time in planning achieve better Windows 7 migration outcomes.

The survey found that the amount of preparation time invested by IT teams played a key role in how much the migration negatively impacted their organisations. The lower tier of organisations – 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 organisations 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.

Preparation for Migration

For survey respondents, the migration typically involved nearly half of the IT staff (42 per cent in Australia) and 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 (87 percent in Australia) of companies said that planning was helpful in facilitating the migration.

Training at 80 percent (84 percent in Australia) and performing a pilot test at 80 percent (75 percent in Australia) were also helpful in facilitating the transition to Windows 7.

“Migrating to Windows 7 doesn’t need to be difficult or disruptive,” said Steve Martin, director, Small and Mid-Sized Businesses and Distribution, Symantec, Pacific region. “Symantec works with a number of organisations, both large and small, to help with their OS migrations and one of the key elements for a successful transition is to ensure thorough planning by the IT team.” “For businesses still contemplating a Windows 7 upgrade, this survey provides advice for Australian companies on how to do it effectively. The survey findings clearly demonstrate that those organisations who take the time to plan appropriately, train staff and perform pilot tests are more likely to be rewarded with smoother transitions, time and cost savings as well as improved satisfaction levels,” he added.

In addition to planning, surveyed IT managers said that it was important to capture important information such as user files and documents, links to network drives, and e-mail prior to migrating. Sufficient hardware upgrades and ensuring proper inventory before beginning the migration process was also important to ensuring the success of the migration process.

Migration Outcomes

Approximately 80 percent (78 percent globally and 82 percent in Australia) of organisations surveyed cited that the actual migration process was smooth, and 63 percent (70 percent in Australia) said it was easier than their last migration.

While organisations ran into delays such as application incompatibility and budget constraints, most of the organisations surveyed also achieved their key motivations for making the transition. Out of the 62 percent (63 percent in Australia) of organisations who set return on investment (ROI) goals, 90 percent (84 percent in Australia) achieved them.

The Optimal Windows 7 PC

Respondents from around the world collectively decided that a PC with the following specifications represented an optimal machine to run Windows 7 in their enterprises:

• CPU running at 2.5 to 3 GHz;

• 4GB RAM;

• 500GB to 1TB of disk storage;

• 1GB or more of video RAM.

The survey revealed that organisations typically wait six to 12 months before migrating and only 8 percent (9 percent in Australia) migrate immediately. Performance, reliability and improving the end-user experience were the key motivators for migrations.

Key Australian Findings

• Australians value fast CPUs: The Australian survey respondents used CPU speed (58 percent in Australia) as the primary metric when planning PC purchases to support Windows 7. Other countries valued CPUIDs or the Windows Experience Index as metrics they used to assess PC purchases before Windows 7 migration projects

• Australia likes conventional desktops: With only 38 percent of respondents considering virtual desktop interfaces, Australian survey respondents displayed less interest in implementing this technology with their migration than any of the other surveyed country

• Australians planned migrations: Australian survey respondents were more likely to plan their Windows 7 migrations, and plan them in order to save money (56 percent in Australia), than any other nation. But Australian survey respondents were less interested in piloting Windows 7 with 75 percent of Australian survey respondents seeing a pilot as a step to easing migration, compared to 91 percent in North America

• Seventy-four percent of migrations were from Windows XP to Windows 7: Just 17 percent were from Windows Vista. This pattern may be repeated as respondents expect to use Windows 7 for three to five years.

• Organisations like the Windows 7 experience: Organisations report better security, performance, manageability and reliability after migrating

• India was the fastest country to upgrade: Survey respondents from India were the fastest to upgrade to Windows 7, with 47 percent commencing projects within six months of the release of Windows 7

Recommendations

“As organisations begin the upgrade cycle to Windows 7, it’s important for those organisations with greater than 10 PCs, to explore automating migration processes as a way to save time, minimise costs and reduce complexity. One of the key recommendations from the survey was to not migrate to Windows 7 in isolation. The best performing businesses used migration as an opportunity to check or enhance their security or undertake other projects concurrently like backup and disaster recovery, virtualisation or add asset management tools,” Martin added.

Based on Symantec’s experience with OS migrations and the capabilities and opportunities presented by Windows 7, Symantec has developed seven simple steps to ensure a smooth migration:

1. Assess your environment and plan deployment

2. Build standard OS images

3. Prepare your applications

4. Capture user settings and personality variables

5. Assemble the pieces and automate your migration process

6. Migrate systems

7. Measure and report

Symantec Solutions

Symantec offers migration and deployment solutions that integrate, streamline and automate migration processes to reduce any additional expenses, delays and end-user disruptions. The Symantec 7 steps to Windows 7 whitepaper provides detailed information about Symantec’s solutions and recommendations for a smooth migration to Windows 7.

Methodology

In August 2010 Symantec, through research company Applied Research, surveyed 1,360 enterprises in 16 countries to ask about their migration to Windows 7. Interviews were conducted by telephone, initially with a single representative of each sample organisation.

Follow-up calls used longer chats with IT professionals involved in Windows 7 migration projects. The sample included companies with as few as five, and as many as 10,000, employees. The median company employed 1,000 to 2,499 people. 120 of the organisations sampled were in Australia.

About Symantec

Symantec is a global leader in providing security, storage and systems management solutions to help consumers and organisations secure and manage their information-driven world. Our software and services protect against more risks at more points, more completely and efficiently, enabling confidence wherever information is used or stored. More information is available at www.symantec.com.

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Media Contacts:

Bas Bolyn

Max Australia

+61 2 9954 3492

bas.bolyn@maxaustralia.com.au

Debbie Sassine

Symantec Corp

+61 2 8220 7158

Debbie_sassine@symantec.com

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