five Client Access License (CAL)
entitlements, which can be applied
per user or per device; 20-CAL packs
for the standard edition are available for a list price of $1,447, with
additional 5-CAL packs at $361. The
Premium Add-on lists at $1,604 and
comes with its own 5-CAL package.
Additional Premium Add-on CALs
are available in 20-packs for $1,831
and 5-packs for $457.
By the time one has spent $2,000
or $4,000 for appropriate hardware
to run SBS and another $2,000 or
$4,000 for the software to support,
say, 50 users, the total bill for an SBS
installation is substantial. In contrast,
a Mac mini from Apple with Snow
Leopard Server supports e-mail and
Web hosting, as well as contact and
calendar sharing, for far less: That
platform starts at $999 for a 4GB
unit with no per-user licensing fees.
Of course, a Mac mini server isn’t
anyone’s idea of server-class hardware. It lacks lights-out management, redundant power supplies and
other features that SBS customers
can leverage in their deployments by
using machines from vendors such
as Dell and HP. But these days, small
businesses want to get 11 cents in
change for every dime they spend,
and the combination of SBS 2011
and server-grade hardware may be
out of reach for many shops.
SBS 2011 comes with a variety of canned reports that cover all aspects of system
status, offering everything from a high-level summary to detailed log files.
I used SBS 2011 for the better part
of a week on hardware that just met
the specification. Even in that barely
adequate configuration, the system
was surprisingly responsive to the
local management console and to
clients on the network.
SENIOR ANALYST P. J. CONNOLLY CAN BE
REACHED AT PJ.CONNOLLY@EWEEK.COM.
The SBS 2011 management console puts key features in a sidebar, with frequently
accessed tasks in the main window.
Basic administration tasks, such
as setting up public-facing services,
are driven by the configuration
tools. It’s a simple matter to set up
reports on system health and status
for internal consumption or for a
service provider’s use when trou-
bleshooting. Backup facilities are
prominently featured on the system
dashboard, as well.
Windows Small Business Server
2011 is a solid platform that won’t
require a lot of hand-holding to get
up and running. It offers customers
a selection of enterprise-class tools
that aren’t compromised in function.
The platform is probably best
suited for those small businesses
with very deep pockets, as the cost
of hardware and licensing can easily
run into five figures. But, if price is
no object, then SBS 2011 is likely to
be a good fit. ´
This story can be found