Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.

1497 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 338

Topic # 239858 8-Aug-2018 11:56
Send private message quote this post

For a small (approx 10-15 users) company,
running SBS2011 : exchange email , SQL based program , file storage (say approx 20GB)

What are the general options for moving the whole lot into the cloud.

Basically, management want everything in the cloud, so that it can be accessed from home, and most importantly if their Office has an power
outage , critical staffers can just go home & continue working : ie no outage issues .


one possible option is to move their server to a datacenter and remotely access that server, either via VPN or TS (adding a TS Server) 
or host everything online , on hosted servers : requiring everything to be resetup.

So in general, what are the practical options for moving their small operation completely into the Cloud .
ie , what options should I be looking into, or what options wont be practical costwise & in usability given the smallish size of the business.

Create new topic
489 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 109


  Reply # 2069786 8-Aug-2018 12:14
Send private message quote this post

Move the email, files etc off to Office 365.


Stick your SQL app on a small dedicated server (ideally "managed" for small Biz so you have the support, updates etc) or up on Azure if you want to stick with Microsoft account and manage it yourself.


Yep will require a bit of "resetup" however better now than when your SBS carks it.

415 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 102

  Reply # 2069816 8-Aug-2018 12:46
Send private message quote this post

We do quite a few of these each month. Standard procedure for a SBS2011 would be:




  • Provision a VM on one of our machines with Server 2012 R2 or 2016 depending on requirements
  • Setup a site to site VM from the datacenter to the business location
  • Add it to the domain (if there is one)
  • Migrate the exchange email to O365
  • Take over FSMO roles and make the new server primary DC
  • Migrate over files / SQL
  • Update group policy and DNS with new records



Ideally you wouldn't be running everything on one server, but we do see it with smaller businesses. You'd probably be best co-locating a server in a datacenter and using SPLA licensing to split it into 2 VMs (one for DC, one for files / SQL). It's not the most straightforward task, and just dumping the SBS2011 server into a datacenter on a public IP is highly not advised, so you'd be best to get an IT provider or Cloud provider skilled in such migrations... we see the pain that occurs when a migration like this goes wrong!

1259 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 620

  Reply # 2069856 8-Aug-2018 13:03
Send private message quote this post

What CamH mentioned is one of the ideal, long-term solution, it's also involves the most work, and is not what most companies do.

The usual first step is to virtualize your physical servers, and using a host server. The host server can be Azure, but there are many other companies also. From a cost stand-point, your servers go from a CAPEX, capital expense to an OPEX operating expense, which your CFO / accountant will like.

To virtulalize your servers, you'll use either VMWare or Hyper-V. I'd recommend Hyper-V since it's less expensive.

While this sounds complex, it's pretty simple, and has the advantage of ease of "up-sizing", and better disaster recovery. You can alos create proof-of-concept servers, user acceptance servers, and testing servers, deverlopment machines on the fly, and only pay for them when they are turned on.

For example, once virtualized you can add disk space on the fly, and add CPU's and RAM with only a reboot. Of course adding hardware increases your monthy subscription.

Also once virtualized you can move your servers to other providers, if you're not happy with your current one.

2413 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 704

Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 2070057 8-Aug-2018 14:40
Send private message quote this post

The gentlemen above make some good suggestions.  Unless you know that you are using Group Policies, and are very keen on central management of printers in the office (i.e the workstations are printing via server-based print queues and you are really keen to keep these), I would look at Azure SQL instances for your SQL database which would likely mean you can do without the Virtual Server.


I recommend doing things in stages


  • Migrate email to Office 365 using MigrationWiz, which will take a major workload off the server.  Disable the Exchange services when no longer needed.  Remaining workloads on the server will run notably better!
  • Migrate files to OneDrive for Business on the same Office 365 Business Premium subscription (unless you need the E3 plan's features).  Note we have had lots of issues with syncing files in the past, but the newer version of OneDrive looks pretty stable and now allows you to do selective sync of certain folders.
  • Move the SQL application to Azure SQL (or if not possible, a small VM on Azure or similar).

Happy to provide some on site assistance on a commercial basis, of course, if you need it.

"4 wheels move the body.  2 wheels move the soul."

“Don't believe anything you read on the net. Except this. Well, including this, I suppose.” Douglas Adams

Create new topic

Twitter »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:

News »

Intel introduces new NUC kits and NUC mini PCs
Posted 16-Aug-2018 11:03

The Warehouse leaps into the AI future with Google
Posted 15-Aug-2018 17:56

Targus set sights on enterprise and consumer growth in New Zealand
Posted 13-Aug-2018 13:47

Huawei to distribute nova 3i in New Zealand
Posted 9-Aug-2018 16:23

Home robot Vector to be available in New Zealand stores
Posted 9-Aug-2018 14:47

Panasonic announces new 2018 OLED TV line up
Posted 7-Aug-2018 16:38

Kordia completes first live 4K TV broadcast
Posted 1-Aug-2018 13:00

Schools get safer and smarter internet with Managed Network Upgrade
Posted 30-Jul-2018 20:01

DNC wants a safer .nz in the coming year
Posted 26-Jul-2018 16:08

Auldhouse becomes an AWS Authorised Training Delivery Partner in New Zealand
Posted 26-Jul-2018 15:55

Rakuten Kobo launches Kobo Clara HD entry level reader
Posted 26-Jul-2018 15:44

Kiwi team reaches semi-finals at the Microsoft Imagine Cup
Posted 26-Jul-2018 15:38

KidsCan App to Help Kiwi Children in Need
Posted 26-Jul-2018 15:32

FUJIFILM announces new high-performance lenses
Posted 24-Jul-2018 14:57

New FUJIFILM XF10 introduces square mode for Instagram sharing
Posted 24-Jul-2018 14:44

Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.

Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.