Latest and Greatest Still May Not Run Next Year

Even if you've just dropped a brand-new, upgrade package into your system, don't consider it a done deal just yet. About six percent of off-the-shelf software packages that are considered Y2K-ready have been releasing upgrades that are not, a recent study by GartnerGroup finds. This may trip up efforts of companies that assume that upgrades to a Y2K ready product is Y2K ready as well, says Lou Marcoccio, research director with GartnerGroup.

In fact, record numbers of vendors are still scrambling to ensure Year 2000 readiness in their products. Infoliant Corp. (Pittsburgh, Pa.), which maintains an ongoing compliance database of about 30,000 hardware and software products, is discovering that some of the largest information technology providers are still grappling with compliance issues, signaling more work ahead for users and their customers. The period between November 1998 and January 1999 witnessed the highest number of compliance status changes since Infoliant started tracking the data in 1997. In total there were nearly 1,500 compliance status changes and record revisions.

This could mean that a product once believed to be compliant is non-compliant or requires corrective action. "We're surprised at how many of our clients are still in the midst of ensuring that their computing infrastructure is ready for the Year 2000," says Kevin Weaver, executive VP of Infoliant. "The fact that manufacturers are still discovering Y2K issues with existing products just adds another level of complexity to the challenge."

As a result of these ongoing Y2K issues, software and hardware companies may be subjected to a growing volume of lawsuits over the next two years, Marcoccio warns.