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Windows in UK schools.

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  • User profile image
    Rossj

    Sigh, more government interference.  Not like it was a big problem, my daughter's school has plenty of MBPros but all of the laptops that aren't Macs run XP.

    It looks like someone doesn't think the upgrade costs to Vista are reasonable, either that or someone else trying it on to get a cheaper deal ..

    Becta wrote:

     It believes that Vista's feature set isn't enough to justify upgrades at this point. In the case of Office 2007, Becta would like to see stronger support for the ODF format used by OpenOffice.org and better interoperability with Microsoft Works.

  • User profile image
    ScanIAm

    Rossj wrote:
    Sigh, more government interference.  Not like it was a big problem, my daughter's school has plenty of MBPros but all of the laptops that aren't Macs run XP.

    It looks like someone doesn't think the upgrade costs to Vista are reasonable, either that or someone else trying it on to get a cheaper deal ..

    Becta wrote:

     It believes that Vista's feature set isn't enough to justify upgrades at this point. In the case of Office 2007, Becta would like to see stronger support for the ODF format used by OpenOffice.org and better interoperability with Microsoft Works.



    My money is on "we'd like it cheaper, please".

  • User profile image
    RobbieCrusoe

    I worked in a school for 5 years, we ran XP, Office 2003 and various other bits and pieces.  Server wise, we had Server 2003, Exchange, ISA and SQL.  Based on the number of PCs in the school, our licensing costs were c£13000 (c£36 per PC, plus server costs) a year.

    £13000 is small change for most businesses, but for a school it is a hefty sum, especially every year.

    IMHO, the pricing structure does need revising.  After all MS want everyone to use Windows / Office, schools are the ideal introductory stage for people to use them.

    With budgets being reviewed all the time, it is no wonder that schools are looking at cheaper alternatives (read Free).

    Before I left, I had been looking at implementing a Linux based thin client solution to some labs as the cost of hardware and subsequent licenses was too high.

    In an ideal world, MS would provide their software free to education, but that world is not occupied by beancounters! Smiley


  • User profile image
    ScanIAm

    RobbieCrusoe wrote:
    I worked in a school for 5 years, we ran XP, Office 2003 and various other bits and pieces.  Server wise, we had Server 2003, Exchange, ISA and SQL.  Based on the number of PCs in the school, our licensing costs were c£13000 (c£36 per PC, plus server costs) a year.

    £13000 is small change for most businesses, but for a school it is a hefty sum, especially every year.

    IMHO, the pricing structure does need revising.  After all MS want everyone to use Windows / Office, schools are the ideal introductory stage for people to use them.

    With budgets being reviewed all the time, it is no wonder that schools are looking at cheaper alternatives (read Free).

    Before I left, I had been looking at implementing a Linux based thin client solution to some labs as the cost of hardware and subsequent licenses was too high.

    In an ideal world, MS would provide their software free to education, but that world is not occupied by beancounters!




    Those beancounters need to wake up and smell the market Smiley

    I've got no evidence for this, but my personal belief is that the main reason that Apple didn't go out of business prior to the whole "Add i to everything" marketing campaign was that they used to give free or severely discounted hardware and software to schools in the 80s.

    My high-school had a compy lab of 6 Apple II+ machines with actual copies of Apple Pascal.  There would have been no way that the school could have afforded the $30K it would have cost for them to purchase those machines at that time.

    It's like tobacco marketing, you gotta hook your customers while they are kids...

  • User profile image
    die-Sel

    they should revise the entire range to be honest. this affects small businesses not alone schools. I have just started work for a small web firm with 18 total people and 30machines inckuding servers and there bill is pretty high to be honest

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    In my experience all the school PCs I've come accross have had OEM licence stickers on meaning, presumably, that they pay once and get a perpetual liscence like the rest of us.

    School PCs are so low spec that they generaly upgrade the OS only with the PCs (again from experience), so any form of susbscritption that allows them upgrades is a bad economy.

    On the issue of open office compatibility, I believe this is the schools responsibility to implement - it doesn't cost them anything to install open office (apart from a few minutes setting up RM application agent or whatever they use).

    On the issue of the long gap between xp and vista - Microsoft themselves have said they will produce more regular releases of Windows, so that problem is negated.

    And this is only advice - the schools can still do what they like.

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    RobbieCrusoe wrote:
    Based on the number of PCs in the school, our licensing costs were c£13000 (c£36 per PC, plus server costs) a year.


    Did the school get an education discount or other special conditions?

  • User profile image
    RobbieCrusoe

    GoddersUK wrote:
    In my experience all the school PCs I've come accross have had OEM licence stickers on meaning, presumably, that they pay once and get a perpetual liscence like the rest of us.


    The systems that were in place when I took the post were all running NT4 and Office 97.  IIRC the OEM licenses for those would not allow us to use XP without paying (if I have read your post incorrectly, and you are not infering that, I apologise) The Schools Agreement program supplies the upgrade licenses to accomodate what we needed to do... but *only* upgrade licenses (at least for the OS).

    For a period of time, we purchased machines from a local supplier to help reduce costs, thus we had to buy an OEM license of NT or 98 so we could use our upgrade license to use XP - hence more expense.

    As for OpenOffice and such, we considered installing it, but decided against it as the teachers, never mind the students, would have had such a hard time wrapping their heads around the concept of using something that is (almost) identical to Word / Excel et al, but has a slightly different layout and spash screen, that we decided it wasn;t worth the hassle.  Besides, all the database coursework is done using Access, using something else would have caused a riot Smiley

    ZippyV: that price was the education price, and even that we negotiated down a bit every year.

    die-Sel: Has your company looked at the partner program?  That may help with your licensing costs.


  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    RobbieCrusoe wrote:
    
    GoddersUK wrote:
    In my experience all the school PCs I've come accross have had OEM licence stickers on meaning, presumably, that they pay once and get a perpetual liscence like the rest of us.


    The systems that were in place when I took the post were all running NT4 and Office 97.  IIRC the OEM licenses for those would not allow us to use XP without paying (if I have read your post incorrectly, and you are not infering that, I apologise) The Schools Agreement program supplies the upgrade licenses to accomodate what we needed to do... but *only* upgrade licenses (at least for the OS).


    In my experience though schools only upgrade software when they upgrade hardware. The school where you worked may have done differently though.



    RobbieCrusoe wrote:
    As for OpenOffice and such, we considered installing it, but decided against it as the teachers, never mind the students, would have had such a hard time wrapping their heads around the concept of using something that is (almost) identical to Word / Excel et al, but has a slightly different layout and spash screen, that we decided it wasn;t worth the hassle.  Besides, all the database coursework is done.


    I meant as well as MS office. In so many ways MS office is currently supperior (especialy Excel and Access) but is expensive for students to purchase for use at home. It would make sense for the schools to install open office along side Ms office so that if students do homework in open office they can print it off in school. There have been times when I have needed to print a document out somewhere only to realise that they can't read open document format and I've forgotten to convert it to MS format. Hence I always try to use MS Office where possible.

    But I'm not made of money and excel '95 is a bit old for my taste so I use Word 2k and Openoffice 2.

  • User profile image
    RobbieCrusoe

    GoddersUK wrote:
    
    I meant as well as MS office. In so many ways MS office is currently supperior (especialy Excel and Access) but is expensive for students to purchase for use at home. It would make sense for the schools to install open office along side Ms office so that if students do homework in open office they can print it off in school. There have been times when I have needed to print a document out somewhere only to realise that they can't read open document format and I've forgotten to convert it to MS format. Hence I always try to use MS Office where possible.

    But I'm not made of money and excel '95 is a bit old for my taste so I use Word 2k and Openoffice 2.


    Yeah, I meant installing it alongside Office, sorry Smiley

    Still would have confised staff and students though (at least in the school I was in Smiley ).

    The majority of problems we had were students taking work home, only to find they couldn't open it on their computer... that's right, the fabulous Microsoft Works Sad... and no matter how many times we told people to save in RTF or to download OpenOffice, they kept coming back.  Ah well, I'm glad I'm out of there now Big Smile


  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    I thought Works had support for MS office formats?

  • User profile image
    RobbieCrusoe

    Hmmm... very true.  $Deity only knows what they were doing then! Smiley

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    RobbieCrusoe wrote:
    Hmmm... very true.  $Deity only knows what they were doing then!


    Probably mixed the cat and the CD drive up then Tongue Out

    I did once here a story of someone trying to put a floppy in a cd drive in a school. Perplexed

  • User profile image
    RobbieCrusoe

    I worked in a university library for 12 years, when CDROMs were just starting to be used, we provided access to various databases to the students.  The disks were issued in sealed caddies (yep, no tray loading drives then), and the student could save any citations to floppy disk (5.25 - they were the days!).  I had numerous students remove the disks from the caddies and insert them into the floppy drives... and these people were supposed to have brains!

    I wouldn't have minded so much, but these particular databases cost upwards of £25000 a year to subscribe to, and back then, getting replacement disks was almost unhead of Smiley

    Mind you, the staff weren't much better, one of them folded a 5.25 disk (no backup) so they could use it in a 3.5 drive.... ah memories Big Smile

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    RobbieCrusoe wrote:
    Mind you, the staff weren't much better, one of them folded a 5.25 disk (no backup) so they could use it in a 3.5 drive.... ah memories


    woops...

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