Microsoft to retire TechNet subscription model for IT professionals

By Shawn Knight · 17 replies
Jul 1, 2013
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  1. Microsoft will soon be doing away with its TechNet subscription model in order to focus on growing their free offerings, the company announced on Monday. IT professionals interested in purchasing a subscription have until August 31 to do so and...

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  2. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,922   +630

    Good job. Retire the tool that enterprises used to evaluate if your latest OS was viable.
    Jad Chaar likes this.
  3. "You are welcome to continue using our MSDN Subscriptions for 10x the cost." Greed is what motivates this.
    Darth Shiv likes this.
  4. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    Yeah, really stupid decision.
  5. The operating systems actually can be evaluated for 180 days. Which should be long enough...
  6. @ RH00D
    The keyword is "Enterprise". 180 days may be suffice for normal end users but for enterprises developing major software or even normal developers, they may require more time than what the trials have to offer.

    Besides, it's clearly written in the article:
    "A 30-day trial period may be more than enough for the average home user but those in charge of enterprise systems will likely find it’s simply not sufficient to make a decision one way or the other – not to mention those nagging activation screens that accompany most trial software."
  7. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,146   +911

    This is pretty stupid, and surely they were making money out of it still?!
  8. Rinzler

    Rinzler TS Rookie

    Well there's still the MSDN and Microsoft Actionpack (Microsoft solution partner), unsure if they include everything from technet. Otherwise as far as os's go you can extend the trails pretty much infinite.
  9. This is a step they should NOT have taken, especially when they today need to prove to be stable, but flexible!! They will loose on this "deal", I am sure. Many small and big Changes without being felxible will break them in the end. Look at Netware vs MS once up on the time.
    They are falling into the same kind of trap. :(
  10. I have been using M$ Technet and to be honest it was the reason that I stopped my conversion to linux. Now with it going away I see no reason to pursue the switch again. This time it may just be for good. Heck I find myself doing more and more in a browser so why not just take the plunge into Chrome.
  11. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,890   +1,224

    yeah, the keyword is 'Enterprise' do you know how much money it costs an 'Enterprise' company to determine if an OS is stable enough to roll out to a few thousand computers? It's thousands if not a million or more dollars. And almost all of it that cost is testing. The point is, they can afford to buy a dozen software licenses to put on some PCs for testing. The software is a fraction of the cost.

    Maybe, but perhaps it just wasn't very popular. Small companies are probably ok with free trials, and big companies probably just buy the software anyway. And any huge server implementation for very expensive software would take more support than $199/year would provide.
  12. ddg4005

    ddg4005 TS Guru Posts: 383   +54

    This was disappointing when I read it yesterday and it's still disappointing today. Hopefully TechNet will be replaced with something else down the road (but I won't hold my breath).
  13. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    This is probably to curb abuse. Believe it or not, there's an underground market for MSDN keys; they're sold for cheap on places like eBay. Subscriptions are also abused by local computer shops and used indefinitely by companies who want to save cash and don't give a s@#$% about Microsoft's "test purposes only" EULA... $300/year for all the MS software you could want is a pretty good deal. And when you're done, cancel your account and your keys remain active, forever.

    By the looks of it, the new set up is "free" but offers an inconsistent mixed bag of trial times. Server is 90 days while other products are 30 days.. while others still are 60 days. This sounds like a mess for testing. A uniform 90-180 day trial period would meet the needs of most large companies though.
    cliffordcooley and Jad Chaar like this.
  14. I can see wanting to clamp down on software evaluation abuse, but that's not the only thing that Technet subscriptions got you. You also got access to tools like the Diagnostic and Recovery Toolset. That's something that you couldn't download or even buy anywhere else, not even from Microsoft itself. The subscription was the only way to get it. I know, I looked for a long time before getting the subscription. I'm a sysadmin and tech support, not a developer, so I don't need a developer subscription.
  15. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    True. A friend of mine has a father who has a MSDN subscription. My friend tells me how he gets all MS software free through his dad's subscription.
  16. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    Yeah, it doesn't look like they're offering this without a sub. I have my fingers crossed it will be freely available though... we'll see.
  17. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,922   +630

    Last time I checked, you couldn't. You couldn't even use a trial version and activate it to become full, nor use it to upgrade. The trial is hard-coded into the OS release.

    By the way, MSDN abuse: not sure how that's possible for OS. The keys given to you go through the same authentication as any other keys and it's only possible to obtain one copy of each OS.
  18. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    With the appropriate Technet subscription, keys get multiple activations and you get multiple keys for each product. Some products have volume license keys too, which can be used many times. The rules have gotten more rigid over the years, but it's not abuse-proof.

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