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Microsoft backs non-certified Vista apps

Many will work with Vista, but iTunes won't

Although some widely used applications from top software vendors haven't been certified for use with Windows Vista, they may nonetheless work with Microsoft’s new OS.

Major applications from Symantec, Adobe, Apple and IBM aren't included on an official Microsoft list of applications that qualify for a ‘Certified for Windows Vista’ or ‘Works with Windows Vista’ logo. However, chances are they could currently be involved in the testing process to achieve those logos, Microsoft and its partners said.

That's the case with Symantec's security products, according to a company spokesman. Though Symantec's software is not listed on the site as having achieved either of those designations, company spokesman Mike Bradshaw said that Symantec's Norton 360, Norton Antivirus and Norton Internet Security are already compatible with Vista.

"It's just a matter of paperwork," he said. The products are going through a lengthy certification process, and should be eligible for the label soon.

Adobe's Acrobat Reader 8.0 also runs on Vista, even though it’s not listed on Microsoft's site as one of those applications certified for or working with Vista, according to Adobe spokesman Matt Rozen.

Tom Caputo, group product manager on the Windows Vista partner team, said the list of vendors which have applications that have achieved either the ‘Certified for’ or ‘Works with’ Windows Vista designations is by no means the entire list of applications that actually work on Vista now. There are about 800 applications on that list, but "tens of thousands of applications" already can run on Vista, he said.

"The goal of the logo programs is to give ISVs (independent software vendors) the opportunity to indicate to their compatibility status to the market using those two logos," he said.

That said, there are still applications from top vendors that aren't available in a full compatible version for Vista, such as iTunes from Apple and Lotus Notes from IBM, among others. And according to some, this lack of compatibility is making it difficult to use Vista as their full-time OS.

Microsoft blogger Chris Pirillo, founder of the Lockergnome technology portal, described lack of compatibility with applications and hardware devices in a humorous blog entry "Windows Vista: Why I'm Breaking Up With You”.

The entry describes how Pirillo will "upgrade" from Vista to XP because he couldn't get some devices and applications he needs on a daily basis - such as the software for his HP Laserjet 3052 scanner or IPFax software - to work on the new Windows client OS.

"I gave Vista a real chance," he wrote. "I just can't use it as my primary OS anymore. ... I'm still more than willing to help Microsoft improve Windows and get the message out to users, but I simply can't sacrifice my own time and productivity without benefits in clear sight. I'm begging Microsoft and all of my hardware and software vendors to make Windows better for me."


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