The Full Circle (www.thefullcircle.com) has been involved in the UK Early Adopter Program (EAP) for Microsoft’s Windows Small Business Server 2011 ‘Standard’ and ‘Essentials’ product since early October, and today Redmond announced that the Standard version has released to manufacturing (RTM) @ http://blogs.technet.com/b/sbs/archive/2010/12/13/windows-small-business-server-2011-standard-releases-to-manufacturing.aspx
SBS 2011 was originally made available as a public preview build in July earlier this year and we’ve been internally testing as part of our continual beta and release candidate research well covered in other posts in this blog.
A significant upgrade that is 64-bit only
SBS 2011 is an incremental but significant upgrade over previous versions. It is based on Windows Server 2008 R2 (and therefore 64-bit only) with Exchange 2010 with SP1, SharePoint 2010 Foundation, SQL 2008 R2 Express and Windows Update Services (WSUS) 3.0 with SP2. There is also the usual deeply integrated management console for ease of administration, backup, monitoring and whole network management – as in all connected clients, not just the server.
For more details on the specific components see http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg508696.aspx.
Premium Add-on for businesses with larger applications
There is also a Premium Add-on which provides rights to run an additional Windows 2008 R2 server to run SQL 2008 R2 Standard for Small Business (limited to 75 users as per SBS) and lifts the 10GB database limit of the Express version as shipped with the Standard product.
Pricing, but not in the UK yet…
UK pricing isn’t published as yet, but in the US Windows SBS 2011 will cost $1,096 with CALs at around $72.
“As you are reading this we are making the final steps to bring the product to the market so that you can acquire throughout our large network of partners. We are finalizing international versions, delivering the product to distribution channels and handing it off to our OEM partners so that they can begin pre-installing the software on new servers,” wrote Curtis Lee, Director of Server and Cloud Marketing at Microsoft.
Microsoft says, starting in early January, SBS 2011 Standard and Premium Add-On will be available in volume licensing form. In mid-January customers will be able to download a trial copy from Microsoft.