RE: Upgrading Exch 5.5/Win2K Srv to 2003 versions

  • From: "Jamie A. Byrnes" <jabyrnes@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "[ExchangeList]" <exchangelist@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2003 10:45:03 +0930

Hi Gene,
(no pun intended, you probably get that alot...)
During my admin career (15+ years) I have never had a Capital
Expenditure Request knocked back, big or small, for one simple reason.
The trick is that you're dealing with beancounters and you have to talk
So make points about how money will be saved over the medium to long
term (put pay-back period next to each point) with things such as
improved workflow, decreased downtime, possibility of major downtime
after support finishes, etc. Use a few (not lots) of the current
favourite acronyms like ROI, B2B even though you probably will never use
exchange for such things. And lastly add the non-substantive points
about things such as stability, extra functionality, etc. Maybe even
push the point about the possibility of the company being liable if they
lose exchange data. Try to get dept managers on-side first, even if they
don't appear to be involved in the decision making process - they may
bring it up with the CEO in a inter-departmental meeting themselves.
And lastly, make it look professional! The report itself should be at
least 3 or 4 pages long, fill it with hard-to-know bullshit if
necessary, and put a concise executive summary at the start, including
all the salient pay-back figures.
Oh and one final point, you can put a little fat into the request so
you've got something to cut out if necessary, ie. Software Assurance,
working spares, etc.
For ideas about what is the best/cheapest reliable setup check the list
archives. In my opinion it should include as a minimum battery-backed
hardware RAID, ECC RAM and one-tape full daily backups. And get the
fastest processor you can afford on a two processor mainboard so you
have a easy upgrade path, preferrably Xeons if looking at 2003

        -----Original Message-----
        From: Gene O'Brien [mailto:Gene@xxxxxxxxxx] 
        Sent: Friday, 25 July 2003 12:34 AM
        To: [ExchangeList]
        Subject: [exchangelist] Upgrading Exch 5.5/Win2K Srv to 2003
        Hi All,
        I've reached the end of my patience with our current Exchange
5.5 server running on a very old Compaq Proliant with Windows 2000
Server (Dual 600MHz machine).
        I took over administration of this thing about 6 months ago -
over the years it has had so much crap put onto it... all sorts of demo
programs (4 or 5 different anti-virus programs, 3 different backup
demos, etc), and it's just gotten to the point where I can't fumigate it
enough to keep it running without drastic slowdowns and crashes all the
        We're a relatively small shop - 30 users.  I want to upgrade us
to a nice new inexpensive Dell server, running Windows 2003 Server with
Exchange 2003, and basically start all over again with a nice clean
install - hopefully leaving the nightmares behind me!
        Problem is, the boss is the type who complains if you spend $20
on a cable without having a damned good reason for it.  I've tried
talking sense to him about how Exchange 5.5 is not a current product,
Microsoft is retiring regular support for it in a few months, the server
is old and in bad shape, etc.. but what I really need is a 'wow' list.
What can I show him that makes him realize it's worth investing several
thousand dollars to ring out the old and ring in the new?  
        Does anyone have a 'highlights' chart or list like this?  I'm
not looking for something that shows me how much easier it is to manage,
how it integrates better with our AD structure, or anything like that...
his answer to that is that 'i'm the administrator, i should be able to
make it work'.  What i'm looking for is - what will the end user see as
benefit?  What great new 'can't live without features' will they see?
        Anyone have an input for me on this one?
        Thanks very much!
        Gene O'Brien
        Network Administrator
        Three Cities Research
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