Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (3637 mails)

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Microsoft Software Cost Analysis (Was: Re: [SLE] suse 7.2!!)
On Thursday 31 May 2001 01:56 am, you wrote:
> On Wednesday 30 May 2001 22:51, Ben wrote:
> >I would rather pay $50 every 6
> > months then $300 (W2K Feb 2000) then have to spend another $150-200 for
> > XP 18 months later..and when Linux's not just
> > cosmetic most of the time. This is just my opinion.
> I would rather pay $300.00 for 3 Linux Distros than be given Microsoft
> Windows for free.
> How the hell M$ sold so much software is a mystery to me. It's really
> pathetic stuff. The detractors of Linux say it comes with no applications.
> Are these people brain dead? All Linux distros come with C, C++, Python
> and Perl. All you get with M$ is Visual Basic. I'd rather use my K+E
> Log-Log Duplex Decitrig slide rule that that stuff.

So let's do some addition. I'm going to give it to you right between the
eyes, so that everyone here knows what a business *should be paying* for
Microsoft's software. The "business" could also be a department in a larger
business, but I'm assuming that the "business" has 25 people or less, will
have 1 central server that will be running SQL Server 2000 for their
database, that there are 24 "sales/marketing people and/or project managers"
and 1 "developer". In a real scenario, you'd have to accomodate a "DBA", at
least 1 "sysadmin", and at least 1 "computer operator" that would run batch
programs to process whatever data the business was in to. There would
probably be more than 1 developer too, but if this "business" is just
starting off, they might be running with a lean crew, which would force the
developer to wear many hats.

I am not going to take into account the price of any hardware, this is just a
study in the cost of doing business using Microsoft's software products. I'm
also depicting a business starting from scratch -- no "upgrades". My goal is
to show you how much money a business pays to Microsoft just for their

Disclaimer: This is not a definitive guide, it's just me (a developer who has
been working with Microsoft's software for 10 years) doing a bit of cost
analysis. I was also a sysadmin for a company that switched to be all
Microsoft and have seen this first hand. Prepare to be shocked.

These listings are all from, which is a 6 year old
online retailer, and which I've found to have somewhat decent pricing. I'll
even provide the item numbers, and URLs, in case you want to verify
everything for yourself.

Item No: 99376
Product: Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server with 25 Client Access Licenses
Price: $3,549.00
NOTE: The Advanced Server edition is required to run SQL Server 2000.

Item No: 99826
Product: Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Standard Edition (1 Processor License)
Price: $4,800.00
NOTE: This might not be the right version, but who cares.

Item No: 11690
Product: Microsoft Exchange 2000 Enterprise Server (25 Clients)
Price: $6,529.95

Item No: 99373
Product: Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional
Price: $279.95
NOTE: You need 25 of these.

Item No: 54150
Product: Microsoft Office 2000 Professional
Price: $549.95
NOTE: You need 25 of these.

Item No: 67374
Product: Microsoft Visual Studio Professional 6.0 with Plus Pack
Price: $1,029.00

Ok, So here we do the final addition:
For a grand total of: $36,655.45

And that is just in software purchases alone... and I have left out a *ton*
of other software that people would need, like resource kits and regular 3rd
party business type software (anti-virus, system management, backup, etc).

I wouldn't be surprised if a business "start up" would pay more than $40,000
in just regular software licenses. Keep in mind, there are only 25 "allowed"
client accesses to the server. So after spending $40K large, you are *still*
limited in what you can do!

So there you have it.. why open source software will kick the living sh*t out
of closed source Microsoft software... as soon as businesses cannot easily
and transparently pirate this software, they *will* come looking for
something else. And we'll be ready.

Or you can get SuSE's 7.1/7.2 Professional distribution, which comes with
$40,000 worth of software, for the low low price of just $70.00.

I hope your face doesn't stay glued in that big silly grin you have now ;^)


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