Small Businesses Owners being priced out of BCM 2010

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G

Gayle

I have just spent a very frustrating 20 minutes on the phone with three

different people at Microsoft trying to understand the new pricing of all the

various versions Office 2010. I have loyally upgraded over the years

basically every program I have ever owned. The fact upgrade pricing is no

longer going to be offered is one beef however what is worse, if I am

understanding this properly from the explanations I was given, is that

basically small business owners such as myself are being priced out of

Business Contact Manager because it is only going to be offered through

volume licensing with a 5 license minimum. How can this be?! This is a two

computer office. I don't need 5 licenses. This country was built on small

businesses. What is up Microsoft? Why have you chosen to price us out of

Office 2010? Outlook and Business Contact manager are the two programs I use

the most. If the three people I spoke to on the phone are wrong then someone

please tell me now because at this point I won't be upgrading from Office

2007 if I can't get Business Contact Manager included at a reasonable price.

Thank you
 
N

Neal

Gayle, the lack of a statement or clear policy or from Microsoft about its

intentions for customers of BCM is disappointing and frustrating. The

software has gone gold, partners have the code, yet it seems the company's

greatest potential advocates " early adopters, IT consultants, and solution

providers—have limited or no ability to test the final code prior to

deployment.

You can find dozens of Technet posts from people like me who have tried to

learn the product inside out, but without Certified Partner Status or a

volume license, we cannot test or deploy BCM as part of Office 2010.

Further, the RTM database management tool seems to be MIA, and this is an

important part of the picture as well. With fresh memories of Office

Accounting 2009's early demise we are left with more questions than answers.

The end policy comes across as social engineering. To get the full benefit

of your relationship with Microsoft, join a large company. WSS 3 works fine

for my SBS clients- what are their choices now, SharePoint 2010? Smaller

clients could never justify its cost or complexity, and SharePoint Workspace

2010 has a very limited application range outside of personal users-we need

more than document management. There is an under-served market segment

between end-users and the very large company,

I build and deploy Windows Home Server and SBS for business. This market

segment is surely under intense review at Microsoft right now. One supported

configuration of Office 2007 is to install BCM databases on home server with

the Database Tool. This is significant for those of us with customized

data-Outlook can't do much CRM without this essential add-on. Why is this not

part of the regular build anyway? Why do BCM users have no equivalent to

SharePoint to centralize data, or why doesn't BCM work with hosted exchange

or SharePoint services? If BCM is to be more than a test bed or showcase

product, the established base of users needs a roadmap to know that their

trusted product won't become the next Office Accounting Professional.

Please listen to your customer feedback on this one, Microsoft Business

Division. I suspect these are marketing decisions, not developer

shortcomings that give rise to the impression that no one is listening.

What do we want? Consider your existing market segments. Make a place in

your roadmap for small business, especially for the huge base of workgroups

or domains under 10.

I need to know if I can or cannot run BCM 2010 against sql express 2008 R2.

I've hammered the beta trying to share contacts on the Server Vail Preview,

and for those of us running Home Server for business, one question is, do we

need a 64-bit database tool? I want to continue using BCM on WHS or WHS

Premium, but in the absence of information, I can only draw on my own testing

experience.

Most customers simply want to configure their products in ways that support

their specific business needs. If Microsoft's response is silence or mixed

messages, customers are likely to consider other platforms with clearer

roadmaps. Goldmine and ACT come to mind.

Currently the answers range from ‘I heard it will be a free download in

June' to ‘it will only be for Volume Licenses, small business need not

apply'. I guess we'll know by June 15. Until then, BCM is like the ‘Fredo'

of the Office family…obedient, dutiful, but taken for granted.

If there was ever a time for the company to listen to customer feedback,

this is it. Microsoft, please get your ACT together about serving the needs

of businesses under 10, or someone else will. Bring BCM into closer

integration with future offerings like Vail and Aurora as well as the current

base of Office and WHS/SBS users. Again, this is not so much software

engineering as the underlying strategies of social engineering.

This is a product designed to make Customer Relationship Management

work...how's that working for the company right now? Microsoft has the

software and tools…is the medium the message? In the absence of a message,

are we supposed to conform ourselves to an undefined future…or will the

company appear to exclusively serve the needs of large corporations while the

under-served market segment of workgroups under 10 continues to grow rapidly?

Respectfully,

Neal

Kirkland, WA
 
A

Andreas Erson

I installed a virtual machine last week for testing BCM 2010. I used Windows

Server 2008 R2 and SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition (Database with

Tools-version). I made a backup of a standalone BCM 2007 database and used

the now released RTM-version of the BCM 2010 Database Tool to create a new

database and restored (which also upgrades) the BCM 2007 database backup to

the new database.

If you install SQL Server 2008 R2 for the sole purpose of running a shared

BCM database I recommend that you name the instance MSSMLBIZ since that is

the default instance name that BCM looks for when connecting.

Remember to run the BCM for Outlook 2010 Database Tool as a user which is a

local administrator. The tool will then automatically configure SQL Server

and the firewall to accept traffic on the standard BCM port 5356.

The entire setup was very smooth.

Regards,

Andreas Erson

SWEDEN

"Neal" wrote:


> Gayle, the lack of a statement or clear policy or from Microsoft about its
> intentions for customers of BCM is disappointing and frustrating. The
> software has gone gold, partners have the code, yet it seems the company's
> greatest potential advocates " early adopters, IT consultants, and solution
> providers—have limited or no ability to test the final code prior to
> deployment.

> You can find dozens of Technet posts from people like me who have tried to
> learn the product inside out, but without Certified Partner Status or a
> volume license, we cannot test or deploy BCM as part of Office 2010.
> Further, the RTM database management tool seems to be MIA, and this is an
> important part of the picture as well. With fresh memories of Office
> Accounting 2009's early demise we are left with more questions than answers.

> The end policy comes across as social engineering. To get the full benefit
> of your relationship with Microsoft, join a large company. WSS 3 works fine
> for my SBS clients- what are their choices now, SharePoint 2010? Smaller
> clients could never justify its cost or complexity, and SharePoint Workspace
> 2010 has a very limited application range outside of personal users-we need
> more than document management. There is an under-served market segment
> between end-users and the very large company,

> I build and deploy Windows Home Server and SBS for business. This market
> segment is surely under intense review at Microsoft right now. One supported
> configuration of Office 2007 is to install BCM databases on home server with
> the Database Tool. This is significant for those of us with customized
> data-Outlook can't do much CRM without this essential add-on. Why is this not
> part of the regular build anyway? Why do BCM users have no equivalent to
> SharePoint to centralize data, or why doesn't BCM work with hosted exchange
> or SharePoint services? If BCM is to be more than a test bed or showcase
> product, the established base of users needs a roadmap to know that their
> trusted product won't become the next Office Accounting Professional.

> Please listen to your customer feedback on this one, Microsoft Business
> Division. I suspect these are marketing decisions, not developer
> shortcomings that give rise to the impression that no one is listening.

> What do we want? Consider your existing market segments. Make a place in
> your roadmap for small business, especially for the huge base of workgroups
> or domains under 10.

> I need to know if I can or cannot run BCM 2010 against sql express 2008 R2.
> I've hammered the beta trying to share contacts on the Server Vail Preview,
> and for those of us running Home Server for business, one question is, do we
> need a 64-bit database tool? I want to continue using BCM on WHS or WHS
> Premium, but in the absence of information, I can only draw on my own testing
> experience.

> Most customers simply want to configure their products in ways that support
> their specific business needs. If Microsoft's response is silence or mixed
> messages, customers are likely to consider other platforms with clearer
> roadmaps. Goldmine and ACT come to mind.

> Currently the answers range from ‘I heard it will be a free download in
> June' to ‘it will only be for Volume Licenses, small business need not
> apply'. I guess we'll know by June 15. Until then, BCM is like the ‘Fredo'
> of the Office family…obedient, dutiful, but taken for granted.

> If there was ever a time for the company to listen to customer feedback,
> this is it. Microsoft, please get your ACT together about serving the needs
> of businesses under 10, or someone else will. Bring BCM into closer
> integration with future offerings like Vail and Aurora as well as the current
> base of Office and WHS/SBS users. Again, this is not so much software
> engineering as the underlying strategies of social engineering.

> This is a product designed to make Customer Relationship Management
> work...how's that working for the company right now? Microsoft has the
> software and tools…is the medium the message? In the absence of a message,
> are we supposed to conform ourselves to an undefined future…or will the
> company appear to exclusively serve the needs of large corporations while the
> under-served market segment of workgroups under 10 continues to grow rapidly?

> Respectfully,
> Neal
> Kirkland, WA
>
 
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