New server system for a small law office

I am looking for recommendations based on experience for a small law firm with about 10 people.  About 5 lawyers and 5 staff.

- Exchange vs hosted exchange
- VOIP (Is the unified communications with hosted exchange any good?)
- Dictation System
- File Sharing
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Scott Fell, EE MVEDeveloper & EE ModeratorAsked:
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wynandkunkelCommented:
For everything except the Dictation system, go Office365.
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Scott Fell, EE MVEDeveloper & EE ModeratorAuthor Commented:
> go Office365.

That is what I am thinking too.  I think they are all on windows 7 by now.  Is it worth going to windows 8?
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wynandkunkelCommented:
Windows 8 is Great :-) but I would not spend the money if their current Windows 7 machines are OK.  I have a customer who is on a mix of Win7 and Win8, and I have no problems technically.

There is also a fairly steep learning curve the first couple of weeks between Win7 and Win8, especially for non-tech savvy users.  Knowing lawyers, they do not like surprises :-)
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Dirk MareSystems Engineer (Acting IT Manager)Commented:
plus one for office 365.. you can also contact ISP`s they also have other option for VoIP and Email

Do you have hardware (server) already for the file sharing?
Maybe have a look at Windows SBS to cover everything except dictation.

To save cost keep them on Windows 7..
Edit..
Unless they have home premium and you want to add them to a domain. Upgrade ton Win 8 Pro
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ITguy565Commented:
Another +1 for office 365. No since spending the money on an exchange server.
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Dirk MareSystems Engineer (Acting IT Manager)Commented:
@itguy565
Not necessarily, if they already have SBS server in place why would you spend more money on Office 365.
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ITguy565Commented:
You have to have someone to manage the exchange server: With 365 it is fairly straight forward.

For advanced tasks you can still use powershell but most tasks such as creating a user it is farily straight forward and doesn't require alot of know how.
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Scott Fell, EE MVEDeveloper & EE ModeratorAuthor Commented:
I'm not sure if they have SBS yet.

They are looking at http://www.goclio.com/ for practice management.  Then probably use Dragon for dictation.    

They also want to incorporate a new phone system to be determined possibly VOIP.  I'm sure they want the phone system to also track time, contacts, dialing.
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Dirk MareSystems Engineer (Acting IT Manager)Commented:
Have you considered hosted VoIP
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Dirk MareSystems Engineer (Acting IT Manager)Commented:
Sorry not hosted VoIP but
Hosted PBX
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Scott Fell, EE MVEDeveloper & EE ModeratorAuthor Commented:
Hosted PBX vs VOIP - what is your experience?
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Dirk MareSystems Engineer (Acting IT Manager)Commented:
Please read the following in regard to hosted vs onsite
http://www.digium.com/en/solutions/ip-phone-systems/how-do-i-choose-hosted-vs-site-voip

My personal opinion..
Go for a managed PBX solution like you said previously you want to track calls, time ext.

Buy or leasing an onsite PBX is costly a specially for only 10 users, try the hosted PBX most providers over a 30 day trail, you've got nothing to loose.
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Scott Fell, EE MVEDeveloper & EE ModeratorAuthor Commented:
Well, they tried office365 for a month and went back to google apps for business.  You can't really use just the hosted service and there are features for the excel/word/outlook that just are not available hosted. It looks like it was done on purpose.  

Sharepoint was great to manage team documents and watching multiple people edit the same document in real time was pretty cool.  

You really have to use both the desktop software and online and actually the desktop needs to be the primary and documents and email will sync up so the cloud is really best used as a back up or being away from the main desktop.

Thank you for your input and sorry it took so long to close out.
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