Microsoft says next stop is the cloud

Microsoft goes public with Windows Server 2012 versions, licensing | ZDNet:

I’m not sure which is the more wow moment… dropping Small business Server and Home Server or going to the per processor licensing on Windows Server standard and dropping the Enterprise SKU.

Ah yes, the “we’re doing this because our customer base is doing it” reason for dropping on premises.  Man I’m still seeing a ton of small businesses not jumping to the cloud. 

Of more concern is that the SBS 2011 SA is being pulled 7/31.  I know Microsoft will not listen to me any more on SBS stuff, but I’d hope they’d push back that SA rights offering.

Amy Babinchak and I are planning a “what’s next???!!” webinar on July 10th to talk about what we know, how SBS is still a fully supported product for many years to come, and what to do next. 

Microsoft can have their heads in the clouds, we’re going to have our feet in reality.

And yeah Vlad you can’ now say I told you so, again for the umpteenth time.

15 Thoughts on “Microsoft says next stop is the cloud

  1. Bill V on July 5, 2012 at 12:20 pm said:

    So… all of us who have been ‘brought up’ on SBS, will now have to either move to the cloud or become proficient in Windows Standard server(s). This is a game changer for sure.

  2. Marko on July 5, 2012 at 1:24 pm said:

    So I guess I won’t get certified in SBS 2011 and would rather concentrate on a different cert……

  3. Joe Raby on July 5, 2012 at 1:24 pm said:

    The biggest game changer is the price. Small Business Server Essentials 2011 doesn’t cost $425, yet this is all that Windows Server Essentials 2012 really is. WHY IS IT SO MUCH?!

    I remember the change from 2003 to 2008 too – it skyrocketed in the OEM System Builder versions. Hopefully the System Builder versions of 2012 will offer more discounts over these prices.

  4. This is a HUGE screw up on Microsoft’s part. They thought they heard some negative comments on removing the SBSC…this is going to be much worse! All of my customers run the Standard or Premium SBS product, either SBS 2003, 2008, or 2011. I’m in the process now of getting some SBS 2003 customers upgraded. Looks like I’ll be buying multiple copies of SBS 2011 very soon to prepare for this. I wish Microsoft would realize they are killing a really great product line and many partners will start looking at other vendors now instead of Office 365. Cloud isn’t the answer to everything! I like my Exchange on-prem! I liked having everything I needed all in one simple install with SBS Standard. Although they said you can add Exchange to the new Windows Server Essentials 2012, it says it needs to be on a separate box. Killing SBS Standard is just a terrible move!

  5. Joe Raby on July 5, 2012 at 4:07 pm said:

    Microsoft, by moving everything to the cloud, now makes continual profit on their services. Compare that to the 5-10yr lifespan some people are getting from conventional SBS solutions and you can see they stand to profit a lot. And don’t forget that Microsoft Online Service partners don’t get their full commission after year 1. Year 2+ partner commissions are only 6% people!

    …besides that, how do you expect them to make up for the loss on all of the Windows 8 blow-out sales?

  6. Shawn on July 5, 2012 at 4:57 pm said:

    Love to attend – but 6pm PST is a bit late for us East coast people – any chance you can move this back a few hours? Or record it and post it please?

  7. bradley on July 5, 2012 at 10:54 pm said:

    For sure it will be recorded.

  8. Colin on July 6, 2012 at 7:49 am said:

    Microsoft has just signed the death warrant for their largest base of evangelists and for their largest client base and potential client base. Most of my client’s cannot afford the 2-3 times increase in cost for the Microsoft alternative to SBS. Most of my clients are in the legal, medical or non-profit segments of the market and cannot or simply do not want to have a public cloud solution or have restrictive bandwidth caps which make it even more expensive or impossible solution. I am a 13 year MCSE veteran so I am not scared off by the Enterprise products but I am no longer going to be pursuing any additional Microsoft certification. I will actively be pursuing alternatives to SBS for a continued on-premise solution. If my client does not have physical control over their own data on equipment which they own in a location own and secure, they have no rights to their data.

  9. Sean on July 6, 2012 at 8:20 am said:

    Wow. As an in-house IT guy for a small business, this is depressing. Started with SBS 4.0 years ago and just last week I went to 2001 Std.

    I like my Exchange. I LOVE my RWW. This is so short-sighted, I do not even know where to begin. I don’t want my connectivity to the outside world in the hands of ‘Guaranteed 99% uptime’. We all know how successful that’s been of late.

    So go ahead and force me to go hosted. This is a dream move for the 3rd parties that scan our incoming. What do you think will, if anything, replace my RWW or serve as a decent substitute?

    The horror.

  10. Rian on July 6, 2012 at 11:08 am said:

    What a disastrous move by Microsoft…. Killing off SBS and your grassroots IT evangelists in one fell swoop.
    Microsoft simply does not “get” how the SMB market work…. Our customers will NOT suddenly jump to the cloud…. In a large city we have 2 ISP options…. Local Phone company and Time Warner Cable.
    Good luck keeping your “cloud” available on that! Not to mention the regulatory, support and other issues of “trusting” the cloud with our customer’s data.

  11. Indy on July 6, 2012 at 1:33 pm said:

    Hah, our company just migrated from standard to SBS. The reason was cost savings and we did nto like a single cloud offering at the time (and I’ve seen nothing to convince us of cloud readiness or security since.)

    We’ll stick with 2011 for now, look at our options again in 2014-2015. It seemed a no-brainer to go with Microsoft’s next SBS product, now, notsomuch.

  12. Scott on July 6, 2012 at 1:37 pm said:

    Microsoft is not asking what we want, they are telling us what we want. We have had one client move one application (accountants, tax program) to the cloud. They were down almost 10 days in the middle of tax season, not good. the internet is no where near relaiable enough in our area, and we don’t have enough fast internet options, to make the cloud a viable option for anything that our clients rely on. I think Microsoft is biting off the hand that feeds it. How many times at SMBNation have they (Microsoft) been telling us how huge the SMB sector is, now they are doing away with a great product in SBS 2011.

  13. What a truly horrendous decision, and to be fair a kick in the face for partners, engineers and clients who have stuck so faithfully to SBS. Here in the UK, 95% of our client base comprises of nearly all Small Business Servers. We’ve looked into every cloud solution we can find and have found not many that are suitable, none that work out cheaper than SBS. Most price comparison guides that compare cloud to an onsite solution all seem to have one thing in common; they take into account the cost over 3 years. What the people who actually push these solutions in the SME sector know better is that a good majority of clients don’t refresh their kit or software after three years. Most do it after five, some even longer than that because of price and budgetary constraints. There is no way the majority of my clients are going to be able to afford to have an onsite Microsoft/Exchange collaboration/messaging solution as costs are going to quadruple, at least. Going from one license to rule them all with a single CAL, we suddenly have to buy two Server 2012s, Windows CALs, Exchange Server AND Exchange CALs. It truly is a move to force clients on to the cloud.

    In my opinion, a lot of companies and partners are going to use this opportunity to look into different none Microsoft solutions. Quite a few of my clients are in areas with poor broadband connectivity and speed (here in the UK broadband is truly terrible). Having cloud e-mail is going to cripple some of them. Nearly all of them are still going to require a server of some sort, maybe it will be the new Mac server instead of Server 2012 that we start recommending to clients.

    Shame on your Microsoft, releasing a Small Business competency and a SBS 2011 exam then pulling the product. What a true waste of time that particular qualification was.

  14. Martyus on July 6, 2012 at 8:23 pm said:

    With the next version of Windows SBS 2011 Standard gone, what is the alternative for small businesses with more than 25 users – where Essentials is NOT an option and buying SBS equivalent stand-alone servers is way too expensive?

    I volunteer my time to non-profit/charity organizations where most have more than 25 users (typically in the 30-40 user range), which use all the features of SBS – Windows Domain, Exchange email, Sharepoint, centralized management, and most important, most of these organizations have limited Internet connectivity. They also have limted budgets. Since SBS Essentials is not an option, what product set does Microsoft recommend where the price point will be similar to SBS 2011 Standard?

    These organizations will not be able to afford on-premise (or cloud) solutions from Microsoft that provide the same functionality as today’s SBS but cost 5-10x more.

  15. I will begin to migrate away from Microsoft products because of this. Many of my clients give me a vehement NO when I talk of any cloud solutions, so this will not fly well at all.

    There are many low priced (or free) options out there like ClearOS that I will start devoting time to learning and sooner or later deploy.

    This marks the beginning of the end of Microsoft. In one move the snub both a great product and their grass roots partners who sell MS products to clients.

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