Thursday, March 09, 2006

TechNet Build'06 Tour - Session 4, Distributed Systems

Make that footer read as follows:
Session 4: Distributed Systems.

The Microsoft product associated with this session is Windows Server 2003 R2.

Before we go any further into the benefits and features for distributed systems that are built in to this release of the server operating system, we've got a major IT manager hurdle - cost. This is incredibly important, not only as a stumbling block for IT Managers, but as an problematic issue for dealing with C-level executives.

How does Microsoft justify charging for R2 for existing Windows Server 2003 customers? Actually, it is only those customers who have neither Software Assurance or Enterprise Agreements. I can see the benefits even to small businesses with Software Assurance, but nonetheless, it's not intuitive to IT Managers that they will have to pay in order to get an update release of an operating system for which they have already paid!

One of the most obvious benefits of R2 for SMBs is print management. Not a lot was demonstrated, but what was look useful. Anything to enhance print management is welcomed by me.

Another benefit with Longhorn in 2007 will be enhanced leverage of SharePoint services.

Another set of problems plagued Rick Claus's demos for this session while showing distributed file systems and enhancements to replication between sites. His troubles were fun to watch...lots of laughter from Bruce Cowper and the hundreds...yes, Rick, hundreds... of IT pros in the audience, not to mention the potentially thousands of times the video feed will be viewed online!

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