Vista compatibility will be hit or miss for the next year. Some business-critical software won’t run on Windows Vista; I’ll be doing what I can to help businesses learn that before they buy new computers.

It will be a moving target. There will be many lists of compatible and incompatible products but I’m not sure we’ll ever find one that’s authoritative and continually up to date. We know previous Quickbooks versions are a mess, for example, but at least a compatible version, Quickbooks 2007, is available now.

Timeslips is the most widely used billing system in small law offices; the current version, Timeslips 2007, was released a few months ago. As of today, the web site says nothing whatsoever about Windows Vista. A tech support rep advised one of my clients today that Timeslips 2007 has not been tested with Vista, compatibility is not assured, and he should wait for Timeslips 2008 before he buys a Vista computer.

Which to my mind raises the question: What? Were you taken by surprise when Microsoft introduced Vista on Tuesday? Your business plan is to have no product available for anyone buying a computer for the next nine months – unless they order a previous generation operating system from Dell’s Small Business division, the only place where Windows XP will be readily available?


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