Category Archives: Small Business Server

Using Microsoft Small Business Server 2003? You’ve got about a fortnight to save £5,000 off the replacement.


As we have said in a previous post Microsoft are ending the Small Business Server package.

This package was ideal, it was introduced so that small businesses with 5 to 25 users could have all the facilities that larger companies enjoyed the at a fraction of the price. This included exchange, SQL, remote desktop and various other packages and most businesses need.

It would appear that the entire reason for discontinuing an incredibly popular package is purely to increase revenue.

We recently provided a quotation for the installation of small business server in to a business. The owner decided that the time was not right due to lack of funds and he would put off the purchase into the new year.

We decided to look at exactly how much this delay would cost him. The difference was staggering, the delay would cost him over £5,000 more than if you bought now. If he decided to buy the entry level Microsoft server and use a system for his e-mail which was not exchange and to forgo SQL and it would still cost an extra £700.

Of course you can buy the entry level server from Microsoft and use the cloud to supply your e-mail system but over five years it will cost you an extra £700 if you ignore the fact that you will need to rent your software and hope that your Broadband is fast enough to cope.

To put this in some kind of context Microsoft small business server comes with everything you need, five user licences and SQL is a low cost add on. Microsoft standard server needs to have exchange, SQL and virtually everything else added to make it any more than just a simple file server. The real catch is in the licenses, each user will need a License to access files, to use exchange and to use SQL. This will cost over £300 per user and nothing is included with the original purchase, if you consider that the same user on small business server would only cost you around £60 and you can see that this soon adds up to a massive revenue increase from Microsoft by emptying your pocket for the same products.

So why is this news? And what’s the rush? That’s simple, when the current stocks run out, it’s a game over. There are only a few distributors of Microsoft Products and the one we use sold 10% of their remaining stock yesterday. If this carries on then your choices become extremely expensive in about a fortnight’s time.

Funny how prices go up rapidly when business picks up or Clients are forced to upgrade.

Take in the following information:
Business is recovering
The “fun” of Tablet computing has peaked
Windows XP is soon to be end of life.
Microsoft have discontinued Small Business Server
Microsoft Server 2003 is nearing end of life and there’s still plenty of it out there

I’ve noticed IT hardware prices are rising faster than electricity bills! – Obviously cashing in on the end of XP & Small business server.

Just had some quotes back and checked on a few prices such as Dell. It would appear that now things are picking up in IT and the fun of Business Tablet computing has peaked (Have you really tried making an excel spreadsheet on one?) coupled with the fact that there are lots of creaking Server 2003 systems out there, let alone dying XP machines and you have an upswing all gives you a chance to boost prices.

We are looking at putting our prices up too as our supplies are coming in at higher prices. We, like everyone, kept our prices on the low side, usually undercutting Dell with a better machine for £5 less. When the pressure on pricing eases and your supplies go up the you have no choice. It’s just when and how much. We are looking at putting ours up before Christmas as most businesses are focused on parties (£150 per employee tax free I read on Linkedin). We think we will go up around 10% but one of the quotes I had back for a standard i5 system with poor upgrade and small power supply from a large national competitor are going up a wacking 25%, yes 25%. That’s an extra £152.