While consumers may be interested in making the
upgrade to Windows
Vista, Office 2007
and Internet Explorer
7.0, the federal Depart of Transportation (DOT) wants no part of
Microsoft's latest software applications. According
to an internal memo, "an indefinite moratorium" has been placed
on performing this software upgrades to DOT computers.
The DOT currently operates roughly 15,000 computers running
Windows XP Professional. The machines run a variety of programs including (but
not limited to) Aspen 2.8.1, Capri 6.5, ISS 2.11 and ProVu 3.1.1. All four
applications are known to have compatibility problems with Windows Vista.
"There appears to be no compelling technical or
business case for upgrading to these new Microsoft software products.
Furthermore, there appears to be specific reasons not to upgrade," said
DOT chief technology officer Daniel Mintz. "Microsoft Vista, Office 2007,
and Internet Explorer  may be acquired for testing purposes only, though
only on approval by the DOT chief information officer."
The internal memo notes that the Federal Aviation
Administration's 45,000 desktop computers will also be banned from making the
upgrade to the latest versions of Microsoft software applications.
The DOT internal memo also notes that DOT is also open to
looking at alternatives to Microsoft operating systems including Suse Linux and
"We have more confidence in Microsoft than we would
have 10 years ago," said DOT chief technology officer Tim Schmidt.
"But it always makes sense to look at the security implications, the value
back to the customer, and those kind of issues.”