Would you flip to Microsoft?

Would you flip to Microsoft?

Summary: The announcement of BizSpark didn't get a huge amount of attention and I'm not surprised. After 24 years of running Wintel based systems I flipped to Mac and have never missed anything Microsoft offered.

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The announcement of BizSpark didn't get a huge amount of attention and I'm not surprised. After 24 years of running Wintel based systems I flipped to Mac and have never missed anything Microsoft offered. OK - I'm an edge case that wants to run as much as I can in the Internet cloud but as someone who has invested in startups the last couple of years I can confidently say that no-one I personally know is building on the Microsoft stack. That's not to say they don't exist.

I recently spoke with ThoughtFarmer. They're betting that organizations wanting to replace intranets will be more willing to do so if the offering is built on Microsoft technology. I see the wisdom in that (more on ThoughtFarmer next week.) Despite all the column inches that open source, Mac, Ubuntu and the like generate, the fact remains that Microsoft still 'owns' the enterprise. That may not matter for departmental solutions owned by users or those deployed over the Internet but it sure as heck matters internally. Especially if that means support.

Mike Arrington declares Microsoft's BizSpark initiative as 'brilliant' and when you look at it, that's easy to understand:

What startups get: a free, tech-supported alternative to open source software. Microsoft gets to train a new crop of engineers on their software and services, and lock these guys in after three years when fees start to be charged. Brilliant.

The question for startup developers is whether they trust Microsoft not to gouge them when the deal expires or before they've hit enough revenue to afford the services.Most of the folk I know give a collective shrug but then I only know a fraction of 1% of those in the developer community. As Jason Harris said on CMS Newsire:

In many cases, running Microsoft software doesn’t even enter the minds of those building solutions in a start-up environment.

It will be interesting to revisit this in say a year and see how Microsoft is doing. In the meantime, if you're a startup, would you go for BizSpark?

Topics: Microsoft, Browser, CXO, Hardware, Open Source, IT Employment

Dennis Howlett

About Dennis Howlett

Dennis Howlett is a 40 year veteran in enterprise IT, working with companies large and small across many industries. He endeavors to inform buyers in a no-nonsense manner and spares no vendor that comes under his microscope.

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49 comments
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  • Nope...

    happy in the land of Open Source and true freedom. ]:)
    Linux User 147560
  • Spelling mistake, off is spelled O-F-F not T-O... nt

    nt
    T1Oracle
  • What does it matter?

    why so intent on what people use? Microsoft, Linux, Apple, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

    If a company feels that this solution or that solution is best for them, who are we to argue?

    [i]We[/i] lose no money if we are wrong
    GuidingLight
    • RE: What does it matter? What?

      <font color=grey><em>"We lose no money if we are wrong "</em></font><br>
      <br>
      Ask <a href="http://news.cnet.com/8301-13860_3-10037090-56.html" target="_blank">LSE</a>.<br>
      <br>
      ^o^<br>
      <br>
      n0neXn0ne
      • update

        Was a result of catastrophic failure in the power grid at the LSE.

        Nice try on that one. I can't see holding a software company responsible if you haven't bothered to update your power filtration system in the past 20 years, and you fry your hardware.
        Spiritusindomit
  • RE: Would you flip to Microsoft?

    Why wouldn't you? It would only make sense to go with a well trusted brand named solutions provider like Microsoft. The amount of time and money spent on R&D that they do alone is well worth it since they provide solid products and services. Only one, maybe two other companies could match them on that.
    Loverock Davidson
    • Now if they'd only....

      ...use that R&D time to make products that work.
      storm14k
      • They did (NT)

        .{}.
        Loverock Davidson
        • yes it work with virus spam and the rest

          thx but no thx
          Quebec-french
      • They don't own the enterprise if their products don't work...

        On the other hand look at OSS. Now, that's crap.
        transposeIT
    • Well...

      It depends on if Microsoft wants to hijack your technology or not. BlueJ almost had that happen to them, and the Stacker disk compression people most certainly did.

      Now if they don't (or they're not going to) hijack your tech, then there's not a problem.

      Perhaps startups would do well to look at how their partnerships etc might go if they go wrong before entering into them. Due diligence, that sort of thing.
      zkiwi
  • really?

    all blogger or journalists say they are using mac, really? i just don't see how many freaks out there using mac.

    no matter how hard you try, mac still stinks as hell.

    i am tired of this, say something real.
    jk_10
  • Open Source strikes again!

    The next time Microsoft offers your company a great deal on software and training, thank Open Source.
    kozmcrae
    • And....

      Since Microsoft competes with a lower TCO especially when including support costs, thank enterprise Open Source vendors.
      Joe_Raby
      • RE: And.... ?

        <font color=grey><em>"Since Microsoft competes with a lower TCO especially when including support costs,..."</em></font><br>
        <br>
        <strong><a href="http://www.cioupdate.com/article.php/10493_1477911" target="_blank">"Linux TCO: Less Than Half The Cost of Windows"</a></strong><br>
        <font color=grey><strong>"The cost of running Linux is roughly 40% that of Microsoft Windows ... Most of the savings with Linux come from software licensing fees ..."</strong></font><br>
        <br>
        ^o^<br>
        <br>
        n0neXn0ne
      • Ah yes...

        TCO spasms into being once more. Free plus support clearly must be much more expensive than licenses for the OS, clients, and also support. Yeah right.

        Especially as there was that study reported in zdnet a while back where Microsoft itself concluded that an OSS solution cost about the same as a Microsoft solution. Ah well...
        zkiwi
        • Every time TCO comes up

          I fail to see anyone explain how Linux offers a comperable solution to Exchange, Sharepoint and Active Directory. So it's pretty hard to quantify TCO when you get so much more, right?

          If I pay less, I get less. I suppose that's a good strategy for Linux to play off. Let me know how that goes down.
          LiquidLearner
          • RE: TCO comes up, TCO goes down

            <font color=grey><em>"I fail to see anyone explain how Linux offers a comperable solution to Exchange, Sharepoint and Active Directory."<br>
            ...<br>
            If I pay less, I get less."</em></font><br>
            <br>
            It's called do more with less. You just named three servers, does one really need three server if they can do it with one.<br>
            <br>
            In the final analysis all you are paying for are licenses for 3 servers.<br>
            <br>
            ^o^<br>
            <br>
            n0neXn0ne
          • So...

            Why did the Microsoft sponsored study have such a radical shift from "Windows is cheaper" to "It's all about the same"?

            As far as Exchange, Sharepoint and Active Directory go, they are hardly compelling bits of code, and they are not cheap in any sense of the word.
            zkiwi
          • It must be the "Victim" complex

            If several sheep are selected for shearing/slaughter every time they are fed, pretty soon they will run in the opposite direction when they see the feedsack.

            Having developed the complex, they then run when they are offered a free meal without fear of reprisal, and hurl insults of baaaaaaaa at the shepherd.
            Ole Man