Windows Vista application compatibility


I've spoken with a number of partners I know in the UK this week about Vista deployments within their own organization and with customers. A few months back the barrier for Vista was drivers for hardware and whilst that hasn't totally disappeared, the situation is way way better than I expected. Sony who are sometimes a little tardy shall we say in putting drivers out has a full set for my Vaio SZ3 and I see Toshiba has a similar listing on their site.

The conversation seems to have shifted to application compatibility hence the release recently of a truck load of deployment tools is timely so I've listed them below. Equally timely (perhaps more so) is the list of 800 compatible apps. There are some big boys like Cisco, IBM and Adobe missing from here though David Boschman covered this nicely in a post last week.

[update from JD at Adobe - thanks!]


  • Application Compatibility Toolkit 5.0: ACT 5.0 is a tool that helps businesses reduce the cost and time needed to resolve potential application compatibility issues encountered when moving to Windows Vista. Through a series of compatibility evaluators and tools, ACT 5.0 enables software developers, independent software vendors (ISVs) and IT professionals to determine whether their applications are compatible with Windows Vista.



  • Microsoft Volume Activation 2.0 tools. Microsoft has added several options to the ways in which business customers can use volume activation technologies to activate multiple Windows Vista-based PCs in their desktop environments.
    • The Volume Activation Management Tool (VAMT) enables IT professionals to automate and centrally manage the volume activation process using a Multiple Activation Key (MAK).
    • Key Management Service (KMS) for Windows Server 2003 provides customers with the functionality of running KMS on Windows Server 2003.


  • Virtual PC 2007. Virtual PC 2007 is optimized for Windows Vista and makes it possible to simultaneously run multiple operating systems on a single PC. but perhaps even more useful is the 800 strong application compatibility list. It's actually disappointing to see some of the big vendors like Cisco and Adobe missing off this which David Boschman discussed last week. Let's hope they join the party soon!


Microsoft Ships Vista Deployment Tools
Microsoft's List Of 800 Windows Vista-Compatible Apps Excludes IBM, Adobe

Comments (3)

  1. John Dowdell says:

    Some Adobe applications have been rev’d to handle Vista changes already. Ongoing information across releases is here:


  2. Gary Short says:

    This list of 800 compatible apps is great; however, as a software engineer / architect, what I’m most interested in is when Microsoft’s flagship development product (VS 2005) will move from the "work with Vista" list to the "certified for Vista" list! Do you have any news on that?

  3. stevecla01 says:

    sorry Gary – don’t know for sure but will check with DPE. Meantime, check out for Orcas CTP!


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