New Information About SBS 2003 R2

Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2

Published: December 6, 2005

Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 (SBS 2003 R2) is an update release to the award-winning SBS 2003 product, providing new features to address the growing needs of small businesses. Scheduled to release-to-manufacturing in the second quarter of 2006, SBS 2003 R2 will offer small businesses the following benefits to help them increase their productivity:

Automated, network-wide patch and update management for all Microsoft Update supported products (see FAQ), lowering the costs of managing a Microsoft-based network and helping to maintain a more secure infrastructure

Increased mailbox limits from 16 GB to 75 GB, enabling improved productivity for employees

Inclusion of SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition technology in SBS 2003 R2 Premium Edition

Expanded client access license (CAL) rights, including access to additional Exchange Server 2003 and SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition servers in the SBS 2003 R2 network, allowing customers more flexibility in growth

Once available (RTM slated for Q2 2006), SBS 2003 R2 may be obtained through the following channels:

SBS customers with Software Assurance* will be able to obtain SBS 2003 R2 without purchasing a new server license** for a nominal shipping and handling fee.

SBS customers without Software Assurance will be able to purchase a new version upgrade SKU via retail, which will enable them to cost-effectively upgrade from any version of SBS (4.0, 4.5, 2000, 2003) to SBS 2003 R2.

In addition, Microsoft plans to offer a “Technology Guarantee” program ***, beginning March 1, 2006 for customers who purchase SBS 2003 from an original equipment manufacturer or a system builder. Customers that purchase SBS 2003 prior to March 1, 2006 should consider purchasing Software Assurance so they can obtain SBS 2003 R2.

See our FAQ for more information. Check back for further updates.

*Software Assurance contract must be active when SBS 2003 R2 releases-to-manufacturing.
**The purchase of new client access licenses (CALs) will not be required with SBS 2003 R2.
***The Technology Guarantee will be available from March 1, 2006 to 60 days after SBS 2003 R2 releases-to-manufacturing (will vary by geography).