Businesses aren't that likely to upgrade to Windows 8 this year, but eventually many Windows-using businesses will make the switch. When they do, one less-obvious benefit will be speedier deployment when rolling out to multiple machines.
In a presentation at TechEd Australia 2012 this afternoon, Windows deployment marketing manager Michael Niehaus shared some figures comparing the expected install times for Windows 8 compared to Windows 7:
|TASK||WINDOWS 8||WINDOWS 7|
|WIM install file size||1.97GB||1.96GB|
|Expanded install file size||7.87GB||7.76GB|
|New install||10 minutes||20 minutes|
|Upgrade from prior version||15 minutes||30 minutes|
Not all of those improvements are due to Windows 8 itself. Many derive from the newly updated Windows PE (Preinstallation Environment) tool, widely used for mass deployment of Windows systems. Using version 4.0 provides a speed boost to deploying Windows 7 as well as Windows 8, Niehaus said. "A lot of the underlying improvements are actually in the tools themselves."
Another benefit of the PE 4.0 shift is that upgrade times don't dramatically increase if you're working with a large hard drive. "It's not going to be the same multi-hour process as the Windows Vista to Windows 7 process was," Niehaus said.
Visit Lifehacker's TechEd 2012 Newsroom for all the news from the show.
Disclosure: Angus Kidman is attending TechEd 2012 as a guest of Microsoft.