Repost of a previous blog post from my now-dead wordpress site so formatting may be poor...
On Monday, I received a email (see below) from Microsoft telling me about the discontinuation of TechNet, even though I knew about this hours before via Twitter. As a long time TechNet subscriber/user, I have a lot of thoughts on this. Personally, I am disappointed as I believe this is a great tool for IT Pros to keep current. I have championed TechNet as a resource for many years to students and IT Pros I have engaged. While the new resources available are nice, I don’t believe there is a single product available know that fills the needs of IT Pros at an affordable price point.
§ Ed Bott wrote a great post breaking down this news. Check it out here.
§ As an MCT, MVP, and a faculty member at a school with MSDN-AA, I have access to everything I need to build & maintain a testing environment along with keeping my skills sharp. That is not the case for many of you…
§ I run no scenarios (at this time) in lab that a 90-180 day eval will not cover. That is not the case for many of you…
§ At $1199 intial subscription/$799 renewal, MSDN is not an acceptable substitute even with Azure credit. Office 365 Developer is not comparable to the Office 365 E3 trial available through TechNet.
§ My belief is much of this decision is driven by licensing and years of “not following the licensing rules” by many subscribers. I would guess many IT Pros have not purchased a copy of software for personal use in eons.
§ TechNet gives you no credit in Azure, which I never understood. You NEED to be testing out Azure as this is the future for many things we do as IT Pros. That…is a reality though we may not like it.
§ This further solidifies it’s really about developers at Microsoft. Also, it solidifies Microsoft’s long-term vision of an “A La Carte” world of IT.
§ My hope is that Microsoft hears the feedback on this and delivers an option that meets the needs of IT Pros at an affordable cost.
Want another option besides MSDN? Check out the Microsoft Action Pack for Microsoft Partners. Most of probably qualify as a Registered Partner. I had this for a number of years as an SMB consultant and found it quite useful. While not the “All you can eat buffet” of TechNet, it gives you internal use rights that many of you are looking for. I believe the cost is $400/yr. Also, being a partner gets you access to Cloud Essentials if you qualify.
If you really feel strongly and want to send Microsoft a message, you can sign this petition. It was started by Cody Skidmore.
In the end, it’s all about choices. I tell my students all the time that you have to invest in your careers, and sometimes that is more than sweat equity. What you choose to spend on your career is a personal choice. I believe a majority of what we do as IT Pros can be accomplished through the free resources available to us. However, for those with speciality scenarios, you may have to fork over some cash to get what you need. Cost of doing business in today’s IT world.
Till Next time…Mike
Email from TechNet Subscription Team: