Neil MacDonald

A member of the Gartner Blog Network

Neil MacDonald
VP & Gartner Fellow
15 years at Gartner
25 years IT industry

Neil MacDonald is a vice president, distinguished analyst and Gartner Fellow in Gartner Research. Mr. MacDonald is a member of Gartner's information security and privacy research team, focusing on operating system and application-level security strategies. Specific research areas include Windows security…Read Full Bio

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Windows 7 Launches With lots of Security Features

by Neil MacDonald  |  October 23, 2009  |  1 Comment

I haven’t posted in a while – I was preparing for and attending Gartner’s US Fall Symposium conference in Orlando which wrapped up yesterday. Coincidentally, yesterday was also the official launch of Windows 7.

As I talked about here, there are things that organizations can do today to improve the security of their endpoints that don’t require an upgrade to Windows 7.

However, there are a LOT of new and improved security capabilities with Windows 7. Some are completely new – like AppLocker and BitLocker To Go. Others are improved over what shipped with Windows Vista (like BitLocker), but are new to XP users.

The full Gartner research note on Planning for  the Security Features of Windows 7 has just published. In the research note, I look at most of the security capabilities of Windows 7, discuss their pros and cons as well as recommendations for deployment. If you are a Gartner client and planning on deploying Windows 7 (which will be just about every organization given how few actually deployed Vista), this document will be useful guide for testing and planning.

Here’s a list of the prioritized features discussed in the note (I’m sure there are more, these are the major ones that I get questions on):

One important note: Because many of the more popular security features such as BitLocker, BitLocker To Go, AppLocker, DirectAccess and so on require EA/SA, the cost of EA/SA must be factored into any cost-benefit analysis of migration. If you don’t already have EA/SA, this can be a significant expense.

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Category: Endpoint Protection Platform Microsoft Security     Tags: , , ,

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