Over the last few months I have decommissioned my Windows Small Business Server 2008. Looking at the server I was kind of saddened to see it go but realized it was a necessary and inevitable change that had to happen. Windows small business server is great but running a home server anymore is starting to become obsolete. There is still a need for the Windows Small Business Server in the midsize office but home based server I feel are gone. Let me explain.
When I first got the Windows Small Business Server in 2008 pre iPhon release I was migrating my site from a Windows 2003 small business server to Windows 2008 Small Business Server. I used the server for three things
- Host My Website
- Host My FTP Server
- File Storage
At the time it was cheaper to pay for internet and a server then it was for paid hosting. The draw backs to saving money and self-hosting were taking care of hardware issues, dealing with daily backups and scheduling time to do updates. Doing these things took away from other tasks but at the time the cost savings were important. The big drawback to hosting your own server was always redundancy for an internet or power outage but you made due.
As time went on I found myself using the cloud more and more instead of struggling with creating FTP accounts for users on Small Business Server. I found it easier to just copy files into folder in Google drive and share them to users. I then install Google drive software on my machine and found myself saving all my documents there to have to worry less about my hard drive dying. Then the convenience factor came in where if I save a file to the cloud and not my local server I could access the file from anywhere not just home.
As my site got more traffic and I started using hosted services it put my mind at ease a bit. Not having to worry about every time a storm hit if I had to go home and start my server or dealing with switching my backup tape and opening my fire proof box to put in last night’s tape. Staying home one Saturday night a month to do updates.
Then one day as I looked at the small business server I wondered why it was still running. I had no use for it anymore all my files were in the cloud. My site was hosted with a hosting company and my OneDrive was shared with anyone who would need FTP access. I went over and held in the button and watched the small business server power off there was just no need for it anymore with the cloud.
I am not saying this is the case for everyone running small business server but I think this is the case for a lot of users who used to run small business servers at home. I think Microsoft especially has done this to themselves by offering easy and affordable cloud services they have eliminated the need for the small business home server and Microsoft, Google and Dropbox has changed the industry gone are the days of running your own home server.
Users that want to still tinker with a server operating systems can now use AWS, Azure and other cheaper pay as you go services and not have to worry about hardware cost. I think this change is a great thing but also a big change in the industry that hurt Microsoft and hardware manufactures in the long run.
All I have to say is good bye Windows Small Business Server it was fun while it lasted.