Hello All,

Sorry, there's no [MS Office - 2010] prefix, otherwise I'd have used it.

I'm trying to figure out how much it might cost us to install and use Microsoft Office 2010 when it is released in the summer. I want to plan this now so that everything is set at the start of the summer break, not a couple of weeks before the end. I want to have a number of options available to present to senior management so we can figure out which is best / cheapest.

We currently have a number of Windows XP SP3 workstations, joined to a domain controlled by a Server 2008 Domain Controller. Those workstations with MS Office installed run Office 2003. We also have a number of Linux workstations, which don't run MS Office at the moment. Everything runs Open Office, of course. Call it 150 workstations in total.

I could have all those 150 workstations running MS Office 2010 by having them connect to a Terminal Services server via an RDP client - this can be done on Linux or Windows. We wouldn't have to upgrade any hardware - some, if not the majority, of our workstations are of the 1GHz / 512MB RAM / 40GB HDD kind of specification, which I imagine are going to struggle running anything too new (they're already running XP SP3 and NOD32 AntiVirus). There's a separate thread about the Terminal Servers bit, with, I think, a conclusion that it's going to cost around £3,000 for a couple of servers running Server 2008 R2. We would then need to buy 150 MS Office and Terminal Services CALs outright - is that around 150*(£50+£20) = £10,500? So around, say, £14,000 in total.

We could purchase a Microsoft Schools agreement. Anyone any idea how much that would cost for 150 workstations these days? Am I correct in thinking we now need only include the machines we actually want to use on the agreement? And, after paying the yearly fee, if you decide not to renew you don't get to keep your software?

Another option is to locally install Office 2010. We would be able to do this on the Windows workstations but not the Linux ones (I think you can get Office 2003 working under Wine, but not 2007 / 2010?). All our workstations meet the Office 2010 minimum hardware requirements, but some really only just - anyone any experience running Office on older machines? I've got a machine I'm going to install the Beta on to see how it manages, but anyone with some decent real-world experience of performance? I'm assuming we'll have to upgrade maybe 30 Windows workstations, at a cost of around £400 each (?), so £12,000, plus maybe 100 Office licenses at £50-ish each, so £17,000 in total.

Does anyone have much experience with the web-based version of Office 2010? How, exactly, would I go about installing it for use in our school? I get the impression that you need a server running SharePoint, then you install the Office 2010 web parts on top of that. Is this licensed the same as standard Office 2007 / 2010 - does it still cost us £50 a workstation or whatever? Anyone any idea of hardware requirements - would just one half-decent server be enough? How much does SharePoint server, or whatever other stuff you need to pay for, cost?

There are, of course, a whole bunch of non-Microsoft options (i.e. just buy a Dell T105, stick an open source web-based office package of some kind on it, done - cost £500), but for now I'm just investigating how much the various Microsoft-based options might cost us.

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David Hicks