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Software experts worry that not enough companies are upgrading to new operating systems

Problems in their technical infrastructure are a fact of life for most companies and many are reluctant to take the necessary steps to deal with the problems, according to a survey conducted during the CeBIT high-tech fair earlier this month.

According to the survey, 64 percent of 200 companies polled confirmed that infrastructure issues are a fact of life for them. They cited insufficient maintenance of operating systems or software programs as the main cause.

IT experts say the problems can have a long-term negative impact and hold back potential productivity increases.

"An IT infrastructure that hasn't been properly maintained also makes it difficult to migrate to an up-to-date system," said Ragip Aydin, chairman of the working group "Windows 7 migration" of Germany's Software Initiative industry group (SID). The survey was carried out by the SID.

The survey found that a large number of companies continues to use relatively old operating systems. About 10 pc of German companies use Windows 98 or Windows 2000, while 60 pc use Windows XP as their operating system.

And only 40 pc of those polled said they planned to upgrade to Windows 7, the latest version of the software, within 12 months. A surprisingly large 55 pc said they had no plans to change operating systems in the coming year.

The SID said in a press release that, despite companies' reluctance to upgrade software, there is general agreement that such moves can boost productivity by between 10 pc and 2o pc.