Best scenario for accountancy

unrealone1 used Ask the Experts™
Hi Experts, we have a client with an old network system. There are 15 users in Sussex and 3 users in site London.
At the sussex main site there is 1 x sbs 2003 that runs active diretory, dns , dhcp, exchange (pop collector) and files. Also they have on this server sage payroll.

They also have 1 x windows 7 machine that runs sage adm (multiple different versions) and Iris.
Ix windows 7 machine also servers as a windows RDP server for the London office , 3 users.
They log into access files and the apps.

They are considering going to Office 365 and want to explore how they can have a better , secure system.
We are looking at proposing Server 2012 DC , and an Apps server for Sage, Iris and a documents storage program they use.
We are considering a VM server to run this , just wondered if we could get some feedback and some advice on best approach for this.
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Senior Systems Admin
Top Expert 2010
From a licensing standpoint, your best option would be to deploy a Hyper-V host server that has two VMs running Windows 2012R2 Standard. Each 2012R2 standard license provides rights to run the Hyper-V host with two VMs (under the assumption that no roles other than Hyper-V are installed on the Host server that runs Hyper-V). You would then configure one VM as a DC, then set up the other VM to run your Apps. Either of these servers could then have the Windows Server Essentials role installed, which installs a pretty spiffy little GUI management interface that greatly simplifies co-existence with Office 365. If you like, you can also configure AD Connect to sync your AD credentials with O365, so users can have the same username and password in both without a lot of administrative overhead.

If you would like, I occasionally consult with IT companies to assist them with the planning and execution of projects that are slightly (or entirely) outside of their experience and skill set. If you'd like some assistance, I'd be more than happy to help (Just shoot me a message).


I began to suggest VMs and cloud to the client and they insist hardware is the way to go. On that basis looking to create 3 separate servers to manage the taks. The solution here was useful though so thanks.

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