Long live GNU/Linux!
Summary: Another Microsoft product bites the dust (leaving room for GNU/Linux) and Microsoft resorts to hype offensives
Microsoft launched EBS in November 2008 in part to give VARs a product to sell to customers whose needs exceeded the 75-user limit of Small Business Server, and potentially attract new midmarket customers. With support for up to 300 users, EBS filled a gap that had existed in Microsoft’s SMB product portfolio, but EBS apparently wasn’t seeing a satisfactory level of uptake.
Scott Fulton explains why people predicted this correctly.
It was a solid idea. But today it was left to EBS’ own product managers to announce on their team blog this morning that Microsoft has made a decision to cancel the product. The excuse they gave was especially disheartening, as it essentially caved in to the arguments naysayers used against EBS’ viability from the beginning.
The truth is simple:
Microsoft will discontinue future development of Windows Essential Business Server (EBS), effective June 30th, 2010.
Microsoft has a way of spinning it:
Microsoft will halt development of its mid-market oriented Windows Essential Business Server software bundle, as the company bets on “cloud computing” rather than lump licensing to woo penny-pinching IT markets.
When asked some further questions (outside the ‘spin zone’), Microsoft’s response was this:
Microsoft officials declined to comment further.
They would not speak to the press, not even IDG News Service. Since the early days of Microsoft, they have had this silence policy imposed at the behest of the PR people (source: Barbarians Led by Bill Gates, a book composed by the daughter of Microsoft’s PR mogul). In any event, here is some more coverage of it [1, 2] and more spin from Ina the booster, Mary Jo Foley, the 'Microsoft press' which covered it too gently, and Microsoft Nick with his weak, one-sided ‘reporting’ at eWEEK (it should be called “eWEAK”). They mostly play along with Microsoft’s PR message, which spins this failure as an evolving strategy. They should challenge Microsoft’s spin, not simply parrot it, which would make them participants in the PR machinery.
There was another article a few days ago about more products that Microsoft discontinues.
Microsoft announced two dates recently that Windows users should heed.
On April 13, Microsoft will no longer support Windows Vista that has no service packs installed.
Second and more importantly, on July 13, support will end for all versions of Windows 2000 and all version of Windows XP with Service Pack 1 and Service Pack 2.
End of support means that Microsoft will no longer give phone and e-mail technical support and will no longer fix bugs and issue security patches.
Microsoft has some real problems these days, also financially [1, 2, 3, 4] (real numbers carry on declining). This past week, not a single headline about Vista appeared in the news, just some marketing lies for Vista 7 (fake figures of “sales”, just like Microsoft did for Vista, courtesy of Microsoft’s PR efforts). It’s a simple case of fake numbers and misclassification for hype (unused licences and XP counting as “sales” of Vista 7), but Microsoft is trying to create the false impression that many people already accept the newer version of the same old operating system. There is also the “R&D” lie from Microsoft [1, 2, 3, 4], where the company basically categorises too many activities as “R&D” and then sells this illusion that it advances science. In any event, Microsoft (MSFT) suffered a decline last week because it admitted that its financial results wouldn’t quite meet expectations, not even in the next quarter.
U.S. stocks pared gains and the Dow Jones Industrial Average retreated as Microsoft Corp. slid after predicting higher operating expenses, triggering a decline in technology companies. Intel Corp. lost 1.3 percent.
In order to reduce those expenses, Microsoft has been killing many products and even divisions that were losing money. Microsoft is still shrinking and it only ever expands in countries where labour is inexpensive and working conditions utterly poor. █
“If you can’t make it good, at least make it look good.”
–Bill Gates, Microsoft