Saturday, 4 April 2009

Some thoughts on Windows Server 2008 Foundation

While we have not had too much time to dive into the inner workings of Microsoft’s new server OS offering, Microsoft now has a specific product site for us to have a look at what the new Windows Server 2008 Foundation is:

From what we can see, the new server OS is meant to provide a “foundation” upon which a really small company can build their “stack”. Note that the user limit for the product is 15.

In Microsoft terms, the “stack” refers to the server software components that can be built into a box to provide server services. From Exchange to Windows SharePoint Services, most any Microsoft component can be stacked onto the OS to provide a viable solution for our clients.

In our case, we choose to run with the Small Business Server 2008 Suite of products if at all possible.

Cris Hanna’s comment on the IT World article Everyone forgets SOHO businesses is a good history lesson:

re: Everyone forgets SOHO businesses

Foundation Server is not new for's been around at least since 2003. And was released under the name Windows Server for Small Business Server, which was very confusing for many. Same limitations, 15 users, no email, no remote web workplace and so on. People thought they were getting the full version of SBS 2003 which does include Exchange, SharePoint Services and so on … Cris Hanna

Cris goes on to comment about the possibility of a hosted solution for the small office’s e-mail and other needs thus providing a blend between the in-house server services and those based in the Cloud.

Windows Server 2008 Foundation

That is the direction we believe that Windows Server Foundation will facilitate for the small 2-7 seat offices. A local Active Directory server that manages the client’s locally stored data and share needs.

It can also have SharePoint installed and configured to give them Intranet and Internet access to their data. They The can also host their e-mail on a Cloud based Exchange hosting service to provide some form of redundancy for their e-mail. SharePoint could reside in the Cloud as well depending on the client’s specific data needs.

Small Business Server 2008

Around the 6-10 seat mark is where we would market an SBS 2008 based solution that may or may not include hosted Exchange. This is the level where the business owner needs to work with us on a vision of their business processes in relationship to their Intranet and Internet usage and access needs. With that vision in place, we would almost always end up with an SBS solution in place.

Hosted SBS 2008, Vista, and Office 2007

For a really small office, we would offer our own SBS 2008/Vista Business/Office 2007 hosted services as a starting block with room to grow into a blended solution via hosted Exchange and SharePoint. If the client’s growth continues, we would then be able to look into an in-house server solution either based on Windows Server 2008 Foundation and the already in place hosted Exchange/SharePoint, or an SBS 2008 based solution.

Which ever way we go, we have a lot of options at our disposal to tailor an I.T. solution based on our client’s needs that provides them with the best value for their I.T. budget.

Hosted Exchange and SharePoint

We are partnered with Own Web Now for our Hosted Exchange and SharePoint as well as E-mail sanitation (ExchangeDefender) needs. OWN enables us to provide an awesome MPECS branded Cloud experience for our clients. They do the hard work on the back end while we do the leg work. In the end, we both win!

Have a few minutes? Here are some thoughts on how to augment our company’s bottom line by partnering with OWN:

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*All Mac on SBS posts will not be written on a Mac until we replace our now missing iMac! (previous blog post)

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