Microsoft Vista

Question Time — Scottish Executive — General Questions – in the Scottish Parliament at 11:40 am on 8th February 2007.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Patrick Harvie Patrick Harvie Green 11:40 am, 8th February 2007

To ask the Scottish Executive whether it intends to install Microsoft Vista on its computer systems. (S2O-11982)

Photo of George Lyon George Lyon Liberal Democrat

The Scottish Executive is currently reviewing its technical computer platform and will be considering all options in the light of its business requirements and information strategy.

Photo of Patrick Harvie Patrick Harvie Green

The minister might have been worried that I was just going to stand up and have a rant about Mr Gates. I will happily do so another time but, on this occasion, I ask whether the Executive's review will include the environmental impact of installing Vista, which, as Greenpeace has warned, will lead to a deluge of computer hardware being rendered obsolete, despite it being entirely serviceable under other operating systems. In particular, will the Executive consider the contribution that the free software movement can make towards making the best use of the hardware that we already have, rather than having huge amounts of it ending up in landfill sites?

Photo of George Lyon George Lyon Liberal Democrat

As I said to the member in my initial response, we are currently reviewing our technology base. In that review, open-source solutions will be considered alongside proprietary ones, and information and communications technology procurement and contracts will continue to be awarded on a best-value basis. All options are being considered, and the next technology upgrade could be an open-source solution, a proprietary solution or a mixture of both. In coming to final decisions, a range of considerations will be taken into account, primarily on a best-value basis.