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Microsoft will close Technet to new subscriptions after 31 August

The end of cheap software for sysadmins
Tue Jul 02 2013, 14:10

SOFTWARE REDEVELOPER Microsoft will close its Technet subscription service with last orders to be accepted on 31 August.

Microsoft's Technet service was a way for firms to try Microsoft software for a relatively low subscription fee before moving on to buy the whole application or operating system. Now Microsoft has said it will close Technet to new subscriptions from 31 August 2013 and suggested that Technet subscribers move onto its more expensive MSDN subscription.

Microsoft had used Technet as a way of getting users to pay for trying software and on the whole it worked well for the firm, as customers were able to evaluate full versions of software for long periods of time before deploying it on live networks. The firm has replaced the unlimited Technet evaluation versions with 30 to 180 day versions that will be available through the Technet Evaluation Center.

Microsoft said its decision to end Technet subscriptions was because people wanted to try free versions of software rather than have to fork over a subscription fee and then get evaluation copies. The firm said, "As IT trends and business dynamics have evolved, so has Microsoft's set of offerings for IT professionals who are looking to learn, evaluate and deploy Microsoft technologies and services.

"In recent years, we have seen a usage shift from paid to free evaluation experiences and resources."

Perhaps without Microsoft's Technet subscription more companies will be willing to evaluate alternative software that doesn't carry Microsoft's logo. Microsoft must be hoping that this won't be the case, as companies might well find that alternatives, especially those that are open source, can be cheaper and offer the equivalent or better functionality.

Microsoft said that Technet subscriptions can still be purchased until 31 August but must be activated by 30 September. µ


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