The future (aka. to upgrade to Windows 7, Office 14 or not)
It has come to a stage now in our school where we have to make some major decisions about the direction our ICT provision is going to take in the next few years. This decision is:
1. Move more machines to thin client, based on Windows technologies, and continue to pay license fees, and perpetuate the Microsoft dependence. This would include upgrading to the new version of Windows Server when it is released. Also, would involve Citrix costs.
2. Move students to a Linux based system, leaving admin and staff on windows - would drop our licensing costs dramatically. But there would still be some.
3. Move students and staff to a Linux based system, leaving admin only on windows. This would be necessary to ensure SIMS.net usability (our admin team use windows thin clients already). And use application publishing for other staff SIMS.net usage.
The reason I am asking these questions of our school now is due to purchasing. We have about 30 machines which we are going to re-use around school. Would we want to do this with windows? or linux? or what?
Also, with the big interface changing coming up (whatever we choose), now is an ideal time to make these decisions. I also intend to combine this with moving to 64bit for servers and clients where possible - which will mean better use of what we've already got (about 95% of our clients are now 64bit CPU's, and all our servers are).
So, what are other people doing? I am assuming that some will be asking the same questions in their own schools? How are you approaching the situation?
We are going to have a meeting with our ICT co-ordinator, myself and my manager (resources assistant head), with an idea to cut costs due to the fact our intake numbers are dropping over the next few years - and there having to be *very* good reasons to continue paying for licenses like we do now.