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The Value of Online Communities: A Survey of Technology Professionals


Technology professionals have consistently been leaders in using online communities for professional benefit. Forums such as Google or Yahoo Groups, Tech Target, ITNinja, and others have delivered important forums where technical problems are discussed and solved, helping systems administrators and other IT professionals do their jobs.

The following report is based on a survey of IT professionals conducted in June 2007. The goal of the survey was to gather data about the value and impact of online communities including the level and patterns of use, perceived benefits, accuracy of content, and time saved by using community-based information to address and resolve issues. Additionally, information was gathered about areas where improvements could be made to online communities for IT professionals.


  • 90% of participants have concerns about the migration to Windows Vista and 53% of participants have no plans to deploy Vista at this time
    • — Only 13% have plans in place for a company-wide deployment of Vista
  • 44% of companies have considered deploying non-Windows operating systems to avoid Vista migration with 9% of those already in the process of switching
    • — Macintosh is the most likely operating system to be deployed in place of Vista (28%) followed by Red Hat Linux (23%)
  • 67% of participants cite virtualization as a key enabling technology for adoption of alternative operating systems
  • 45% of participants report that system management challenges prevent adoption of non-Windows operating systems
  • 89% of participants report that a single systems management interface for all types of operating systems would be beneficial

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