Microsoft recently announced that they are discontinuing TechNet Subscriptions. For the uninitiated, these are annual packages for ~$275 that gives you unresetricted testing/development licenses for every MS operating system, as well as most software (e.g. Office, Sharepoint).

With that package, I’m able to run a home lab for professional development. It enables me to have my professional career also be a hobby at home without breaking the bank.

The big counterpoint from Microsoft is that virtually everything they offer can be run in Evaluation mode, giving up to 180 days of free access. My problem with that is that my lab well outlives the 180 days. I don’t want to have to set up a brand new lab every 6 months because the time I take to set that up is going to seriously cut into whatever time I had set aside to do new things in the lab. Microsoft is removing incentive for the IT industry that supports it to continue doing so.

On the bright side, maybe next time I set up a server for something I’ll be learning a lot more about CentOS!

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