Stuart Crawford reflects on the life and times of one of Microsoft's most polarizing products
After a 10 year run, Microsoft appears to have closed the curtain on the popular Small Business Server product. Reaction throughout the IT community is mixed on why Microsoft decided to pull the rug out from under a popular yet very niche product line to favour of the continued effort to move small-business customers to the company’s Office 365 solution.
SBS was a product like no other in the Microsoft Partner Network. Lead by SBS pioneer Harry Brelsford at SMB Nation, the small-business community rallied behind a robust yet sometimes flaky server solution that was priced to provide enterprise-level technology within a small-business budget.
Many SBS users are up in arms, seeing their livelihood chopped at the knees or simply upset that they are being pushed to the cloud. SBS users believe that the cloud is still not ready from primetime. Carl Fransen from Calgary’s CTECH Consulting Group mentions “The writing has been on the wall for years; CTECH adjusted our services years ago to prepare for this day”.
During numerous discussions over cups of Tim Hortons coffee at the Canadian WPC lounge with the small contingent of SBS users present at WPC2012, they feel that customers in many areas of the world do not have significant bandwidth to afford a move to the cloud while forward thinkers continue to jump on the cloud bandwagon.
The cloud push is nothing new. Since the Minneapolis WPC event, Kevin Turner has been promoting Microsoft’s Software + Services vision, which now is the cornerstone of their Office 365 solution. And according to CEO Steve Ballmer, “Office 365 is exploding, exploding in its momentum”. But are all SBS users behind the push to the cloud and Office 365?
Microsoft’s next generation of Windows Server, Windows Server 2012 Essentials features new server solutions that blend the best of on-premises technologies with Microsoft’s Office 365 solution, which provides small businesses with an affordable, robust and secure computing infrastructure that’s designed for long-term growth.
Ideal for small businesses, Windows Server 2012 Essentials offers small-business solutions for businesses with fewer than15 to 25 users. More information can be found at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?Linkid=257790
Winnipeg MSP, Evident IT is ready for the next generation of Windows Server. “I have clients already asking me how they can best leverage the cloud with Windows Server,” said President and CEO Roger Miranda. “Evident IT is looking at innovative ways that we can best blend our IT consulting services with Microsoft’s Office 365 and Windows Server 2012, it appears Essentials is the perfect fit”.