Windows Support and a Windows Server?
Over the last 10 years or so Microsoft have offered some form of ‘Small Business Server’ aimed at small offices of up to, perhaps, 20 or 30 people – (the actual numbers have changed over the various releases).
There was Small Business Server (SBS) 2003 – based on Windows Server 2003 and Exchange Server 2003. The next major release was SBS 2008 – based on Windows Server 2008 and Exchange Server 2007. Then came SBS 2011 which was based on Windows Server 2008 R2 and Exchange Server 2010. And they were widely used in the small business, small office community – in fact they still are – today, in 2014. SBS provides a central administrative hub (Active Directory) for managing all user accounts, computers, passwords and permissions across the whole network. It provides users with shared files and printers and acts as the primary email server for the business domain. It provides centralised networking services like DHCP (for the allocation and tracking of IP addresses) and DNS (for resolving domain names to IP addresses). It also provides remote access so users can access their work computer(s), files and emails from anywhere, so long as they have Internet access. Typically this is used for easy access to the office network from home. These servers also had a solid, reliable backup utility allowing users to treat the server as a central repository for all users’ files and folders with confidence that it would all be backed up every night and kept secure. With the latest release of Windows Server 2012 R2 (which is the server equivalent of Windows 8.1) the Exchange email functionality has been dropped since Microsoft would now prefer users to sign up for Office 365 and use Microsoft’s own Exchange servers to host their email offsite. For anyone looking for small office server for a team of anything between 3 and 23 users we would happily recommend Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials as an affordable small business in-house server solution. We can help you choose between rack server or tower server, help you decide how much memory to configure it with and how many hard drives you might need. We can supply the hardware, install it for you and configure it to suit your business requirements. If you think you might benefit from some hands-on advice or just a free telephone chat, we’d love you to get in touch – now.