Channel Insider content and product recommendations are editorially independent. We may make money when you click on links to our partners. Learn More.

With Windows 7 as the heir-apparent to the eight-year-old XP operating system (Vista? What Vista?), VARs are gearing up to lead their customers into the transition. For the smallest businesses, this will happen by default as their typical purchasing venues sell only Windows 7 machines. But the rest will rely on VARs to lead the way, reassure them about their XP applications and highlight new benefits that will impact their businesses.

Windows 7 also gives VARs the opportunity to leverage new capabilities within the operating system family itself, as well as add-ons being marketed by hardware makers. Here are seven ways VARs can take advantage of Windows 7:

1.) Lower VAR support costs: Managed Services providers in particular are eagerly anticipating the lower support costs that come along with replacing an eight-year-old operating system and the older hardware on which it typically resides, since SLAs make them culpable for maintenance. "It makes us more efficient," says Andrew Harper, CIO of Gaeltek LLC, a Managed Services provider in Manassas Park, Va.

To read the full story and for more Vertical Systems Reseller headlines, go here.