Some interesting results here.. http://www.soluto.com/reports
Of course, the one advantage business supplied machines have over the OEM stuff in stores is the slim customized corporate Windows image, rigorously tested over maybe a year before being applied to each machine. Software is restricted to what the company needs such that the employee can complete assigned tasks, all other stuff going to the wall.
It is all a far cry from the junk infested, trial ridden OEM images + Recovery + Tools, indifferent OEM support, and a tendency to always shift the blame onto Microsoft.
Trials anti-virus solutions and office suites account for a few failures. Between users not fully understanding the meaning of ‘trial’ and being surprised to find that 1, it isn’t working anymore and 2, it is going to cost $$$ to rectify, and then installing older versions over the top of new, it is hardly surprising that there are operational hiccups.
As a hobbyist and former IT Pro, I don’t have any of the above issues. How smug of me. Well, not really. Over time, I have learned a great deal, much of it trial and error in the early days, and I find the installation of Windows and what I need on a daily basis easy to install and set up. For Joe and Josie Average, they need support, so the OEMs load up as much into the Windows installation in a bid to drive users away from contacting the OEM directly.
Also, the J’s don’t want the task of loading Windows. They want an instant, out of the box experience.
In fairness to the OEMs, much has been done to make life easier for the end users. Recovery partitions have offset users losing manufacturer supplied recovery disks, but in doing so have reduced the scope to create and use partitions. The recovery process even offers to save user data before wiping out and re-installing everything in many cases.
Whatever the OEMs do, many problems are generated because the end user has no clue. People are no more computer literate than they were 20 years ago. There are just a lot more of them these days.
So, does the report have any value, bearing in mind that there is a disclaimer that corporate images had replaced the OEM stuff? No, not really. What it does show is that corporations look for general value for money, and Acer and Dell offer the best value in the field.