As I write this, I’m watching the EBSS launch which is a family of products that includes both Small Business Server 2008 and Essential Business Server 2008. I’ll be up front: I’ve been waiting for this moment awhile now.
I’m most excited about EBS 2008. Having done small business consulting for the majority of my career now, I’m excited to be moving a bit and working with larger clients. And this software suite is designed specifically for them. From seats ranging 50 to 300, I think EBS is a great product. I’ve been beta testing it since it was available in beta 2 and it’s a dream not just for IT but also for users. One of the main selling points I can see with it is the business cost justification for it: you get a lot for a little. The ability to provide remote access for users/clients has been around for awhile now, but has it always been easy? With the Remote Web Workplace, it becomes really easy as things are mostly web-based. Sure it was in SBS 2003…but I think this is more slick which brings out a greater, richer experience to the user and that in turn justifies its return on investment.
Another point is for developers: They can build on top and extend the platform by creating add-on's that plug directly into the console for a single point of management…very nice for IT guys/consultants.
EBS consists of 3 servers (or a fourth for Premium editions) and each one has a specific role. You get Active Directory, Exchange, System Center Essentials, Threat Management Gateway, Core Services (DHCP, DNS, ect.), Web Server and more. Add in the SharePoint plug-in and you’re good to go! Built on the power and rock solid stability of Windows Server 2008 and you’ve got an amazing offering to customers that they can really take advantage of. What’s even better is that there is now a supportable platform for virtualization in this suite, so you don’t need 3 physical servers.
I’m currently planning 2 deployments of EBS and just finished my first with SBS. The SBS installation went WAY smoother than expected and was simply awesome. Something good this way comes for Windows Essential Server Solutions…