SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 22, 1997 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the immediate availability of Microsoft® BackOffice® Small Business Server, the industry’s first integrated suite of server applications optimized to meet the needs of small businesses. The announcement was made at the sold-out Small Business Server Technology Conference ’97 with 1,500 industry partners in attendance.
A comprehensive suite of server applications that is easy to install and manage, Small Business Server contains the essential services that small businesses need to easily run their operations and communicate with customers and partners in new and more efficient ways. Designed for businesses with up to 25 PCs, Small Business Server addresses the cost and complexity issues that have blocked small businesses from tapping the power of the Internet and intranet computing. Before the introduction of BackOffice Small Business Server, complex or incomplete alternatives prevented resellers and IT consultants from recommending and installing the new generation of server applications in small businesses.
Value-added providers, such as VARs and consultants, can install Small Business Server in record time, allowing them to grow their customer base and focus on higher value-added solutions, which increases their revenue opportunities. It also provides independent software vendors (ISVs) with the richest platform for development.
“The 95 percent of all U.S. businesses without a full-time information technology department should run, not walk, to BackOffice Small Business Server,”
said Peter S. Kastner, group vice president of Boston’s Aberdeen Group.
“The installation and administration are ingeniously easy, the price is attractive, and the Internet access commendable. Hats off to Microsoft for making computing easier for the rest of us.”
Small Business Server combines award-winning Microsoft BackOffice server products and enables small businesses to share information and resources, access the Internet, communicate with customers and partners, and run business-critical applications. Modem pooling and an integrated fax server were added specifically to respond to requests from small businesses to improve their ability to manage communications.
“We listened to feedback from thousands of small businesses and the organizations that service them before creating Small Business Server,”
said Jim Allchin, senior vice president of Microsoft’s personal and business systems group.
“They wanted a comprehensive suite that provides everything small businesses need in an IT solution, without requiring an IT staff to manage it. Making the suite easy to install, manage and use was a core design goal, and reflects Microsoft’s commitment to simplifying computing overall.”
“Having access to inventory data, e-mail, fax capabilities and the Internet from several different PCs has dramatically increased customer service without increasing costs,”
said Martin Criminale, retail manager and administrator at Seattle’s Ti CYCLES, a five-person company that makes customized titanium bicycles.
“Small Business Server really helps us out in terms of reliability, user access and efficiency, giving us everything we need to grow the business.”
Key Design Features Provide Unprecedented Support for Small Businesses
The components in BackOffice Small Business Server provide a complete foundation for running a business, with key design features including file, print and application services, essential communication services, and a secure Internet connection. An easy upgrade path to BackOffice or component applications preserves customer investments.
File, print and application services. The Windows NT® Server operating system version 4.0 provides a secure, robust way to share files, information and resources, and run applications. Microsoft Internet Information Server delivers Internet and intranet features for professional Web sites. Microsoft SQL Server
6.5 provides a powerful, secure relational database for third-party business applications.
Essential communication services. The graphically rich e-mail, discussion group and groupware features of Microsoft Exchange Server 5.0 with the Microsoft Outlook
desktop information manager enable small businesses to build an online customer community. Fax services provide a centrally managed way to send and receive faxes from desktop PCs. Modem pooling makes it easy to share modems from a central location .
Internet connection services. Small businesses can quickly locate an Internet service provider and get on the Internet easily using the Internet Connection Wizard. The Domain Registration Wizard makes it easy for small businesses to establish a second-tier domain name, such as
“smallcompany.com.” The Microsoft FrontPage® Web site creation and management tool is a quick and effective way to create and manage professional-quality Internet and intranet sites without programming. Users can access the Internet securely and cost-effectively with Microsoft Proxy Server.
Easy to set up, manage and use. Integrated Server Setup quickly installs all server applications after users answer a few simple questions. Automated tools walk users through the entire setup process, from adding PCs and applications and creating users to attaching printers and connecting to the Internet. The Manage Server Console puts all server management tasks in a central, intuitive location with wizards that walk users step by step through common tasks.
Small Business Server Helps Value-Added Providers Serve Fastest-Growing IT Market
Small Business Server also provides an integrated platform on which resellers, consultants and custom application developers can create tailored solutions and provide support services to address this largely untapped market. Value-added providers can service customers more cost-effectively by remotely managing Small Business Server. They do not have to make expensive on-site visits to solve basic issues.
“Small Business Server contains everything we need,”
said Spencer Cole, senior systems technician at JRE Consulting, a value-added provider in Portland, Ore.
“It’s quick and easy to install and manage, so we can focus on selling innovative value-added solutions.”
With Small Business Server, ISVs now have a complete set of services for their applications to use, including database, messaging and Internet. In addition, ISVs are taking advantage of the easy installation and management capabilities of Small Business Server to offer seamless solutions optimized for small businesses.
Pricing and Availability
Microsoft BackOffice Small Business Server is available now through value-added providers, retailers and mail-order resellers for the estimated reseller price (ERP) of $1,499 for five users and $2,459 for 25 users. Additional Add Packs of five Small Business Server Client Licenses for the five-user version are available for $309. Small Business Server is limited to a maximum of 25 workstations. BackOffice Small Business Server is also available through the Delivery Service Partner (DSP) program for those channel partners that build their own PCs. The DSP product is available in multipacks that contain three BackOffice Small Business Servers. Each DSP Small Business Server includes five Small Business Server client licenses. Additional Add Packs of five Small Business Server Client Licenses are also available through the DSP program. Microsoft is also offering a five-user version of Small Business Server with a five-user version of Microsoft Office 97 Professional Edition, enabling value-added providers to create integrated and affordable business and workgroup solutions. Scheduled to be available in the first quarter of 1998 for an ERP of $2,899, the package includes a Small Business Server license, five Small Business Server client licenses and five Office 97 Professional Edition licenses. Additional Add Packs of five Office Professional and BackOffice Small Business Server Client Licenses are available for $1,719 for up to 25 workstations.
Additional information on Small Business Server is available from the Microsoft Web site at http://www.microsoft.com/smallbiz/ or http://www.microsoft.com/directaccess/default.asp for channel partners or http://www.microsoft.com/oem/ for system builders.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
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