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Microsoft Small Business Server 2003

Microsoft Small Business Server 2003

The Microsoft small business server 2003 is a category in itself and is very different from the other 4 versions of Windows Server 2003. The Microsoft small business server 2003, version 5.2 released on April, 2003 is an advanced solution for small businesses. It functions very similar to that of an operating system installed in a computer. It has unique features like data protection, effective connectivity with customers and the ability to do more functions in less time. This innovative integrated business solution includes E-mail management, Internet connection options, internal web site management, remote access, support mobile devices, file and printer sharing options and backup and restoration of files.

It works flawlessly with Windows networks used in personal computers (PCs). The technology integrated in the small business solution is a boon to small businesses with targeted solutions like Remote Web Workplace and also provides management benefits like integrated setup, enhanced monitoring, unified management console and remote access

Effective planning

Successful deployment of any network depends primarily on effective planning. The hardware and software infrastructure on which the Windows small business server 2003 will operate must be thoroughly planned. Successful planning in turn depends on gathering and analysing the entire present and future data processing requirements. The decisions made during the early stages of the deployment are crucial because only the right decisions will ensure trouble-free performance and avoid frequent upgradations to the hardware and software.

Three elements are essential for an effective Information Technology (IT) strategy

• An analysis of how the business requirements and IT capabilities match up today. Whether the technological structure is adequate and where is it lacking.

• A projection of the business and IT goals. It is better to have one-year, three-year, five-year and ten-year plans for business needs and also the IT functionality and services needed to meet those needs.

• A roadmap that provides a path to the business and IT goals.


When the Windows Server 2003 is implemented, the server components are not enabled to reduce the attack surface of new machines. The compatibility modes help to run older applications with greater stability. The enhanced Active Directory compatibility, and better deployment support helps transition from platforms like Windows NT quite easier. The enhancements made to services like IIS web server, the Distributed File System, Terminal Server, Active Directory, Print Server and a number of other areas fully has been well received by the customers.

The main advantages are

• Built-in firewall protection and security-enhanced remote access preventing unauthorized users from entering into the network

• Identifying technology issues before they appear

• Ensuring network health by keeping the PCs and servers informed with current updates to enhance the security of the network

• Automatic data backups to prevent data loss and retrieve and restore accidentally deleted files more easily.

• Support for a wide selection of business software solutions

• Reduced costs and increased flexibility

• Users can work from any place and anytime

• Provision for setting up more servers

Servers for small businesses

To understand the need for the windows small business server 2003, we need to analyse the importance of servers in small business concerns. A server is a device, which serves files, data, printers, fax and other resources to multiple computers. A server can be a specialized computer or a hardware device. The server software is optimised to perform various services for other computers known as clients. The clients can be computers as well as printers, faxes and any other device connected to the server. A server and the clients connected to it together form a client/server network. This network provides the routing systems for fast flow of data and also centralized access to information, resources, stored data and any other functional requirement.

Servers make sharing of files and resources between clients and also the management of client hardwares more secure. In a server network, the employees of a small business concern can access a particular file of the company from multiple locations at the same time The Microsoft small business server 2003 offers many server features to small businesses which was previously available only to large companies. It is built specifically for small users and can accommodate a maximum of 75 users or devices.

The installation process

The Quick setup chart, guides the user pictorially in implementing the various setup processes. The setting up of the network is slightly complicated for non-technical users. The preloaded version boots into a Setup Wizard. The Setup Wizard configures the network and client systems. This wizard is used to connect the server either to the Internet or to an external router. The to-do list at the end of the wizard instructs how to set up the server software, which includes options for permission for secure areas, firewall and other features. The procedures governing the security options like passwords are so severe that no unauthorized user can ever enter into the network. However the client setup process is easy and automated. The names of the computers, which are clients, must be entered into the small business server 2003 software and thus the client computer system is recognised by the domain. After connection, when we log on to the domain from the client all applications and data are shared with the client.

Standard/Premium editions

Local users can be setup under client systems, and such clients have local administrator accounts. Thus the powerful out-of-the-box functionality for accessing the domain from remote areas and the added features have seen to it that a vast majority of small businesses have moved into this product rather quickly. A buyer can choose either the Standard edition or the Premium edition of the small business server. The standard edition includes Windows SharePoint Services, the Microsoft Exchange for e-mail and fax services and the Active Directory for user management. The Premium edition includes the above features and also Microsoft SQL Server 2000, Microsoft Internet Security and Acceleration Server

Related topics

• Server Virtualisation

• Enhancing server performance

• Avoiding server breakdowns

• Improving data storage

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