Microsoft has announced plans to streamline its mid-market server product line, including an end to development for Windows Essential Business Server (EBS).
The company cited emerging technologies such as cloud computing and virtualisation as influencing its decision.
"Four years ago, we committed to building an infrastructure solution for the mid-market. Windows EBS was the first of its kind to meet the unique needs of mid-market IT pros, but since that time the market landscape has naturally changed," said Microsoft.
"Today, we announced the decision to streamline our server product portfolio and will discontinue future development of EBS effective 30 June 2010."
Microsoft said that it is aware that the decision could cause problems for some users, but claimed that it will help companies to adapt by offering a limited free offer on its component software.
"We recognise that ending future editions of EBS could result in additional cost and complexity for our EBS customers. Therefore we are going to provide a limited offer for all EBS 2008 customers," the firm said.
"Beginning on 30 June 2010 through 31 December 2010, current EBS 2008 customers can get the individual component software from the EBS 2008 suite for free."
Organisations wanting to migrate to an alternative within Microsoft's server and cloud range can do so for the next six months at promotional prices.
"This decision not to ship future versions of EBS does not come lightly, and will not impact any other Windows Server products and solutions, including the next version of Windows Small Business Server [SBS]," said Microsoft.
"As a matter of fact, we are working hard to build the next version of SBS and look forward to a second decade of success with this award-winning small business offering."
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