Versions of SBS 2003


Versions of SBS 2003

Another unique feature of SBS is that it is now available in two editions: Standard and Premium. The foundation of both editions remains Windows Server 2003, Windows SharePoint Services, and Microsoft Exchange Server 2003, while benefiting from wizards and prepackaged functionality built around RWW and Windows Shared Fax services. After gathering input from customers and partners, Microsoft found that many were not implementing some of the advanced or premium technologies of SBS. After long thought and further input from other partners and more customers, Microsoft split SBS into a Standard Edition and a Premium Edition.

SBS 2003 Standard Edition

Designed to provide companies with all the technologies needed for a first server solution, SBS 2003 provides a stable, secure, and scalable environment on which to build. Everything from messaging to remote access is included out of the box. Collaboration and secure access are included, and with the improved interface it is easier than ever to set up and extend for any number of different business environments.

Table 1.1 summarizes the features of the two editions of Small Business Server 2003, enabling you to choose the best solution for your company needs.

Table 1.1. SBS 2003 Features at a Glance

Feature

Standard Edition

Premium Edition

Windows Server 2003

Windows SharePoint Services

Exchange Server 2003 Technology

Microsoft Office Outlook 2003

Microsoft Shared Fax Service

Routing and Remote Access Services (RRAS)

SQL Server 2000

 

Microsoft Office FrontPage 2003

 

ISA Server 2000/2004

 


SBS 2003 Premium Edition

SBS also released with an enhanced package, the Premium Edition, adding Microsoft SQL Server 2000 and Microsoft Internet Security and Acceleration Server 2000 to the mix. These premium technologies were found to be less used but still desirable by many SBS customers. SQL Server 2000 still provides great value and a stable platform to build other solutions and programs on. Even though SBS 2003 Standard ships with MSDE integrated, some solutions require the expanded capabilities, manageability, and security of SQL Server.

The other additional premium technology not included in the Standard Edition is ISA Server 2000. Often misunderstood and called difficult to implement, ISA provides greater security and reporting than the basic firewall. ISA also provides better remote VPN and monitoring functionality. Access control can be set at a granular level. The ability to create and modify websites is provided by Microsoft Office FrontPage and can be used to modify Windows SharePoint Services sites.

The inclusion of these technologies provide the advanced functionality and granularity that many customers seek.

SBS 2003 SP1

On March 30, 2005, Microsoft released Service Pack 1 for Windows Server 2003. Many improvements are the same updates provided by Windows XP with Service Pack 2. Among the improvements are the Security Configuration Wizard, which allows easy research and changes to security policies; the ability to update DLLs, drivers, and non-kernel patches without rebooting; auditing and tracking of IIS 6.0 metabase; a Windows firewall that allows administrators to more easily manage incoming open ports, assisting in automatically detecting and selecting default roles; and post-setup security updates that configure the firewall to block all incoming connections and direct the user to install updates. These are just a few of a long list of updates provided by Service Pack 1 for Server 2003. It's worthwhile and beneficial to check out the full list of updates on the Microsoft website. The full list can be viewed in Microsoft KB article 824721 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/824721).

Do not install Windows Server 2003 SP1 on SBS 2003 until you are ready to complete the full SBS 2003 SP1 installation process. Doing so will break many of the wizards for SBS.

Note

One of the additions in Windows Server 2003 SP1 is the Security Configuration Wizard. Normally, this wizard appears as a shortcut on the desktop of the server after the service pack has been installed. When all of SBS 2003 SP1 has been installed, however, this shortcut will not appear.

Running the Security Configuration Wizard on an SBS server will not break anything on the SBS server, but it will not harden the security on the server. In fact, it will make the server less secure in some ways. This wizard must be run on all Windows Server 2003 member servers in the SBS domain but not on the SBS server itself. You will not kill the server, but you will not help it, either.


The SBS development team told the SBS community to be patient and that Service Pack 1 would be out within 60 days of SP1 for Server, and as promised Service Pack 1 for SBS was released June 2005. To receive all the included updates for SBS, you should download and review a copy of "What's New for Windows SBS 2003 with Service Pack 1" http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=B5846A14-F306-41F0-9D1F-97F615E62ADF&displaylang=en.

Not only does the Service Pack include SP1 for Server, but also specific fixes for SBS 2003. Windows SharePoint Services SP1 and Exchange SP1 are also included, but one of the big benefits of SBS SP1 is that those with SBS 2003 are entitled to receive a copy of ISA 2004, and again this is more than merely an update to the product but a major upgrade to the product line. Information on Service Pack 1 for SBS can be found at the Microsoft website at http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/sbs/downloads/sp1/default.mspx.

If you have a simple install of SBS, you should be okay with the Service Pack, but if you have moved folders around or have done much customization, you will want to review your setup to make sure that all settings for file folders are pointing to the correct place and haven't been relocated.