Migrating to Windows Vista

Upgrading an existing installation of the Windows desktop operating system to Windows Vista. Like the clean installation, an in-place upgrade also requires that you perform certain checks on the existing system hardware, device drivers, and applications to find out if they can be successfully ported to Windows Vista.The following explain the things you must take care of before performing an in-place upgrade.

Planning for an Upgrade
Before you upgrade an existing Windows operating system, first check that the current version of Windows can be upgraded to Windows Vista. If yes, you must also check which version of Windows Vista is most suitable for your requirements. In case you have Windows 95, Windows 98,Windows ME or Windows NT Workstation, you can only perform a clean install. Upgrade from these operating systems if not supported in Windows Vista. You can upgrade only desktop operating systems such as Windows XP to Windows Vista. It is not possible to upgrade any server operating system like Windows 2000 Server or Windows Server 2003 to Windows Vista.

Hardware Compatibility
As with a clean install, you must also check your current system hardware to make sure it is compatible with Windows Vista.The most important step is to check that the hardware device drivers will work with the upgraded operating system. For example, if you have any custom PnP devices or legacy non-PnP devices, obtain Vista-compatible device drivers beforehand. If you do not have a compatible device driver, check with the manufacturer and obtain a device driver that is compatible with Windows Vista.

Application Compatibility
When you upgrade the existing installation of a previous version of the Windows operating system, most applications will be available in Window Vista also, along with any settings you may have configured for it. But, before you can really enjoy the applications with the upgraded operating system, make sure these applications are compatible with Windows Vista and there won’t be any functional problems. If necessary, update these applications before starting the upgrade installation. The Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit (ACT) version 5.0 can help you check compatibility issues with currently installed applications. This tool will identify the currently installed applications and report any problems. You can get the download link for ACT 5.0 tool from Microsoft’s Web site at http://technet.microsoft.com/enus/windowsvista/aa905102.aspx.

Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor
The simplest way to check the compatibility of existing system hardware, applications, device drivers, and so on is to run Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor. This utility provides a detailed report after running a check on all system components. You can run this utility on 32-bit versions of Windows Vista Windows 2000 Professional SP 4 and Windows XP SP2.You can launch the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor in several ways:

• Download Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor from Microsoft’s Web site at www.microsoft.

• Run the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor directly from the preceding Web site.

• Run the setup.exe program from Windows Vista DVD and click the Check
Compatibility Online option when you start the upgrade installation.

Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor Report displayed report is divided into the following categories:
• System The information under the System tab of the report tells you about any problems while running some editions of Windows Vista. For example, a computer may be well suited for Vista Home Basic edition, but it may not have the necessary hardware to run Vista Ultimate edition.

• Devices The information under the Devices tab of the report tells you about any problems with existing device driver files.

• Programs Information under the report’s Programs tab tells you about any potential problems with application compatibility.

• Task List The information under the Task List tab tells you about the most appropriate Windows Vista edition. This page also contains information on what you need to do before installing Windows Vista. You can print the Task List or save it by clicking the Print and Save Task List link located at the top-right corner of the window.

Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor works on individual computers to perform a check on existing system components and determines which edition of Windows Vista is most suitable. When working on a large number of computers, it may not be possible for administrators to run this utility on each and every desktop. Microsoft provides the Windows Vista Hardware Assessment tool, which can be used in a network to check all desktops that need to be upgraded to Windows Vista. This tool can be downloaded from Microsoft’s Web site at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/solutionaccelerators/hardwareassessment/wv/default.aspx.

Source of Information : Syngress How to Cheat at Microsoft Vista Administration

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