I've just visited a friend's company and they have asked to help setup their IT infrastructure. At the moment they have around 20 laptops with 25 local accounts. I pity the guy who setup the local accounts on all the laptops. They don't have an IT person, just someone who knows a little bit about computers.
- 8 laptops within the main office and 12+ laptop working from home.
- 25 users sharing the 12+ laptops from home
- There are no servers or centrally managed storage. Everything stored locally on laptops. They share files just via emailing to each other.
- Windows 8 Professional on all laptop
I've advised them about Office 365 and Google apps but they have no interest in cloud solution because they had a quote and it was too expensive for a yearly subscription.
- Centrally managed accounts and file shares.
- Monitoring software on the laptops (mainly to monitor web browsing)
- VPN Connection
- Currently 25 users but will be expanding
- No interest in cloud solution
- Cheap or free solution
- 1TB of data storage
What I propose
- Windows Server 2012 Essential that runs the DC and File share.
- Pfsense or some other open source software for their router/firewall and vpn.
- Rent a VPS somewhere for an offsite backup.
- Web filtering on router/fw box. For home users, I'll route all their traffic through the VPN.
Looking at licensing for Windows Server Essential 2012, they only support 25 accounts. It is low cost and I don't have to worry about CALS. Whereas if I buy Windows Server 2012 Standard, I need to pay around $30 per user CAL. I have a feeling that my friend will just say that they will cap it 25 user accounts and some users will be sharing accounts.
What am I going to do with these laptops that are at home and never inside the office? Getting the users to logon initially and setup their profile. I can't ask all 25 staff to logon to each laptop once to setup their accounts. Is there a way that I can VPN into the office network before the user logs on?