Magazine article Medical Economics

Tech Talk: Windows Vista or XP?

Magazine article Medical Economics

Tech Talk: Windows Vista or XP?

Article excerpt

Here's an important deadline for any doctor in the market for a desktop, laptop, or tablet. Until June 30, 2008, you can still buy computers with the Windows XP operating system as an alternative to Windows Vista, designed to replace XP.

An operating system, or OS, is the computer's command and control center that lets you run application software like an EHR You'll want to consider the older Microsoft OS because your current programs-or those you want to buy-may malfunction on network computers with Vista. (This worry doesn't apply to servers, which rely on a different class of OS software.)

Software companies have been slow to make their products Vista-compatible, says healthcare IT consultant Mark Anderson in Montgomery, TX When he asked hundreds of EHR vendors in a survey three months ago whether their current programs worked with Vista, nine in 10 said no.

His findings help explain the slow acceptance of Vista in the business world. According to a recent survey by Forrester Research, only one-third of North American companies with more than 1,000 employees will begin deploying Vistaloaded computers in 2007 and 2008. Not surprisingly, Microsoft decided to let computer manufacturers sell new machines with Windows XP for five months past its original deadline of Jan. 31, 2008, for phasing out the older system.

The extension applies to all five XP versions, including Professional and Professional x64 for businesses and Tablet PC for tablet users. Vista also comes in five flavors, including three for businesses-Business, Ultimate, and Enterprise. All but the Home Basic version replace XP Tablet PC.

Critical applications? "I'd choose Windows XP"

Our spot check of eight EHR vendors didn't exacdy confirm Mark Anderson's survey results, but still raised yellow flags. Six companies-Allscripts, eClinicalWorks, MedcomSoft, MediNotes, e-MDs, and Practice Partners-reported that their programs worked with Vista. …

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