Thursday, November 11, 2010

Presentation Material from SMBNation

Did you manage to make it to SMBNation 2010?  Were you in the jammed packed rooms for “Aurora” or “SBS7”.  Now that we have full product names, pricing and estimated release dates, it’s time to start talking about these great products.


While the names in the decks are unchanged, I am now making the SMBNation decks available to you for both sessions:

Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials (known at SMBNation as “Aurora”), and

Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard (known at SMBNation as “SBS7”).

Click on the above links to download the decks presented.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Announcing Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 Essentials

Now that Kinect has stopped stealing all of our thunder around announcements (although I have to admit I can’t wait for mine, it looks awesome!), we can continue rolling out announcements in the Small Business space. This morning, building on the Windows Small Business Server 2011 Announcement, we are announcing a new edition targeted at Small Business called Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 Essentials.

What is this Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 Essentials? It’s an answer to what the community have been begging for. Today we see a lot of partners put WHS v1 into small business for the PC Backup integration. WHS v1 only backs up 10 of those computers, and is a stand-alone machine you have to manage on it’s own. Breckenridge fills this gap for businesses allowing you to Domain Join Breckenridge to your SBS 2008/SBS 2011 Standard domains to allow backup for up to 25 computers, and additional storage for up to 25 users.

Home Console of BreckenridgeDomain Joinpicture 3

As you can see, it looks a lot like the Windows Home Server Codename “Vail” Edition and the Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials Edition. That’s because it is! It shares the same underlying architecture, which means all the same add-ins work on WSS 2008 R2 Essentials, as they do on the other products.

So what is the differences?

Home Server “Vail” WSS 2008 R2 Essentials SBS 2011 Essentials
10 user limit 25 users limit 25 users limit
10 computer limit 25 computer limit 25 computer limit
1 CPU Socket 1 CPU socket 2 CPU sockets
8GB RAM Maximum 8GB RAM Maximum 32GB RAM Maximum
No Domain Join Domain Join Domain Controller

Aside from the ability to Domain Join, and the user limit increase, there are some subtle differences you’ll notice throughout the product that have more of a business “tint”, like if you choose to use WSS 2008 R2 Essentials for Remote Web Access, you’ll notice the same defaults you see in SBS 2011 Essentials, instead of what you see in Home Server. There are also some changes to HomeGroup defaults as well. The last thing to note is while you can install WSS 2008 R2 into an SBS 2011 Essentials, or WHS Vail environment, the client connector from each of these products cannot be installed on the same PC.

So why should you consider WSS 2008 R2 Essentials for your small business or customer?

  • PC Backup for up to 25 PCs in your SBS 2008, 2011 Standard network. And yes, you can run multiple devices in the same network, and choose who has access via a domain group
  • Server backup – backup those PC Backups and other critical data on the WSS 2008 R2 Essentials server. (no, you can’t include the backup of this into your SBS backup)
  • Similar console management as our other products. But if you domain join, you don’t manage users from this console, and the password policy is inherited from the domain (even for local users left on the WSS 2008 R2 Essentials box)
  • If you are installing it into a standard server environment, enjoy the Remote Web Access functionality
  • Additionally, monitor the health of computers in your network
  • Media streaming in the business (training videos, etc)

Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 essentials should be released in the first half (H1) of next year (2011). While it can work as a stand alone NAS device, it’s primarily targeted at Small Businesses with an Active Directory in place and the need for PC Backup and media streaming functionality. When it’s released, it will be available through multiple OEM channels with multiple form factors.

To see the official announcement on the SBS Blog, navigate here.

To learn more about Windows Storage Server, and the new addition, navigate to their blog.

Specifically if you want to read more from the Storage Server Family on WSS 2008 R2 Essentials, they have published a post here.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Aurora and SBS7 have a new name! Announcing SBS 2011 Standard & Essentials

This morning over on the Official SBS blog, we announced the names of both Aurora, SBS7 and the Premium add-on.  Both products have been hammered on pretty hard in the current beta, having been downloaded more than 9000 times to both partner and consumer community testers.  So what are the final names?

Aurora shall be known as Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials.  This product is perfect as a first server for small businesses, giving them a cost-effective/easy-to-use solution to help protect, organize and access their data.  As you already know, this product will connect up to Office365.  SBS11 Essentials can be used by up to 25 users and requires no CALs for access to this server (CALs still apply if you add a TS-in-app-sharing server though!).  Pricing for SBS11E is still to come, but we expect to release this in the first half of 2011.  To learn more about Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials, download the datasheet.

SBS7 shall be known as Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard. This is designed and priced for small businesses with up to 75 users, delivering that familiar SBS 2008 Standard, enterprise class server technology as an affordable all-in-one solution.  SBS7 helps protect information with server backups and more on-site features like email, SharePoint, and WSUS.  Licensing is consistent with SBS2008 where CALs are required.  Estimated costs are at the official SBS blog, but today state ~$1096 with CALs at $72 (all in USD).  Again, this will be released in the first half of 2011.  To learn more about Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard, download the datasheet.

I also wanted to announce the Windows Small Business Server 2011 Premium Add-on. This add-on can be applied to both SBS11e or SBS11s and includes access to another copy of Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard and SQL Server 2008 R2 for the small business.  The secondary server can be used for many different purposes, including LOB applications, roll-based such as TS-in-app-sharing (with additional CALs), a BDC, virtualization through Hyper-V, etc.  Again, estimated costs for this sku are at the official SBS blog. but today state ~$1604 with CALs at approximately $92 (all in USD). 

To learn more about the Windows Small Business Server Family, download the family overview brochure.

To download previews of Windows SBS 2011 Standard and Essentials you can visit here.

To read the official SBS blog post, visit here.