Texas to Windows Vista: Keep Walkin'?

"I have read a lot about the problems they have with this particular software."

That's an exact quote from Texas state Senator Juan Hinojosa (D-McAllen), right after the lawmaker admitted that he hasn't used the Windows Vista operating system. It's a pretty benign statement of technological aptitude, even given that the senator's a cross-platform computer user at home. But I must admit, it does sound a little strange considering Hinojosa's latest legislative work: introducing a rider to the state's $182 billion budget plan that would prevent state agencies from purchasing Windows Vista-related software, hardware, or licenses.

Huh?

Don't raise the pitchforks yet, Microsoft fans: according to the San Antonio Express-News, 44 state agencies are currently using Vista or Vista-related products in some degree. Hinojosa's budget provision wouldn't eliminate these ongoing uses nor outright banish Vista from the state. It would, however, require any state agencies (save for higher education institutions) to receive formal approval from the Legislative Budget Board before picking up any of the aforementioned Vista-related contraband. It's not a Vista ban per se, but you know how these things can go: at the very least, the provision would make it much more difficult for government-based Vista adoption in Texas.

"We have a lot of problems with the Vista program. It had a lot of bugs. It takes up a lot of memory. It's not compatible with other equipment, and it's supposed to be an upgrade from the XP program that is being used by state agencies, and it's not," said Hinojosa, as reported by the San Antonio Express-News.

The budget passed the Texas Senate by a vote of 26-5 Wednesday evening, but that doesn't guarantee that Hinojosa's rider will survive all the way until the end. Texas Governor Rick Perry still wields the power of a line-item veto, after all. But if I was Microsoft, I wouldn't be holding my breath for a reprieve.

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