Microsoft's Small Business Server is a remarkable hit, said a research firm Monday as it released the results of a survey that claimed an astounding 86% of small and midsize businesses either use the server bundle or are planning to deploy it.
"Who knew this was going to be such as huge hit?" says Laura DiDio, the Yankee Group senior analyst who conducted the survey of some 500 small and midsize businesses, as well as resellers and consultants.
More than twice as many use or plan to roll out Windows Small Business Server 2003 than use or plan to deploy the earlier Windows SBS 2000, DiDio says, numbers that support the much better market performance of the newer edition of Microsoft's small-business bundle.
SBS 2003 comes in two versions, the $599 Standard and the $1,499 Premium, and incorporates Windows Server 2003, Exchange Server, SQL Server, Internet Information Server, Front Page, and the Microsoft Management Console. Premium adds Internet Security and Acceleration Server.
Microsoft literally owns the small- and midsize-business market, DiDio says, since competitors such as Novell Small Business Suite and Linux in general are barely a blip for these customers. Only 3% said they plan to purchase Novell's offering, while just 11% said they were using, or are going to use, the open-source Linux operating system.
"These customers don't care about the brand name," DiDio says. "Linux is not even on their radar, and actually, they don't even much care that SBS comes from Microsoft. They just want something that will be the most cost-effective and efficient."