It must be a coincidence this week that Microsoft have started to release the documentation on what they call the “repair scenarios”. These documents are designed to assist us in repairing SBS 2008 in scenarios where components have been uninstalled, corrupt or otherwise rendered useless by some user messing with things too much. You can access the documents here http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd430085.aspx
I say it’s a coincidence, as over the last two weeks, I’ve seen scenarios where people are pushing the limits of the SBS 2008 product. They are pushing the limits by trying to bend it into things it was not designed to do. In one case, a person decided that it was Microsoft fault that SBS would not do EVERYTHING he wanted it to do. SBS 2008 was designed to have everything installed on the primary SBS 2008 server itself. Some people are trying to remove SharePoint, Exchange and other key system components with the expectation that everything else will work as originally designed. Well – it won’t. More specifically, I should say “It won’t work as designed" and you won’t get the support you need from the various support organisations. Yes – I know there are valid business reasons why you want to try to change the product to suit your customers requirements, but we need to remember that SBS 2008 was designed for specific markets and specific functions. It was designed as a fully integrated product not as individual components that you can configure how you like.
Anyway – enough of this for now – if you want to push a product to it’s limits and beyond, be careful of the side effects. Make sure you test it in a test environment first, and ALWAYS ensure that the client understands the risks YOU BOTH are taking by doing this.