When Written: Oct 2009
Website Spark is aimed to help start-ups to get the Microsoft programs they need for the first three years
Super Preview is a welcome, if flawed tool, and it seems that Microsoft are continuing along the theme of getting all warm and cuddly in trying to help the budding web developer with the launch of their WebsiteSpark program (http://www.microsoft.com/web/websitespark/ ) .
The idea behind WebsiteSpark is to help independent web developers and small companies get started. There is free software and support for three years, the software is considerable, three licences of Visual Studio 2008 Professional, one license of Expression Studio, two licenses of Expression Web 3, four processor license for Windows Server 2008 R2 and four processor licences of SQL Server 2008 Web Edition. Along with this there is free on-line training and customer referrals through the Partner program.
To qualify, you or your company have to build web sites for others and be no larger than 10 employees. This is a great ‘kick start’ for many start ups, with Microsoft obviously hoping that these people will be tempted to go down the Microsoft route by removing the initial large outlay. So what happens after your three years are up? You can either keep all the software for $999 a year or just keep the server licences for $199 a year. Microsoft has previously run BizSpark for start ups and DreamSpark for students both of which have proved successful.
Helping start-ups to get going will be welcome in this economic climate and of course once ‘hooked’ on Microsoft products, the hope is that they will stay I guess. I could put the cynical ‘RWC’ hat on here but do I think that this initiative could be a real boon to start up companies wanting to use Microsoft technologies which they already have skills in.
Article by: Mark Newton
Published in: Mark Newton