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What to do without OneCare for Server RRS feed

  • Question

  • I presume I already know that answer, but now that my license for OneCare for Server is expiring (and Microsoft emailed to tell me this) I need to find another commercial use licensed anti-virus.   In one breath, Microsoft says in the email to go ahead and use Microsoft Security Essentials as a replacement, but in another breath (to my shock and dismay) they have limited MSE to home and home-based business in the EULA.  Thus, dashing my hopes for not only upgrading to the best antivirus there is, but it would have been free as well.  I wouldn't even mind paying for the use of MSE in a commercial use.  I guess I'm looking for a little frustration vetting and someone to tell me the best way to move on to Forefront Client Security as it is presumably my only commercial option.  I don't want to spend $3K on top of another server license.  I'm running SBS2003 in most of my offices.  Can FCS run standalone on individual workstations or must it have a management/update server?  I'm sure this is the wrong forum for FCS questions but I'm not very happy that Microsoft tells me to use MSE then says I can't in the EULA and not give me a better transition option then just saying OneCare is gone forever.

     

    -- Or Microsoft could write and exception to their EULA for MSE for previous COMMERCIAL consumers of OneCare who subscribed to the server edition !!

     

     Your subscription to Windows Live™ OneCare® will end soon. Microsoft is discontinuing OneCare and as a result will no longer 
    be accepting subscription renewals. We recommend running up-to-date antivirus software on your PC at all times to help keep it secure. In lieu of OneCare,
    Microsoft is proud to offer a high-quality consumer antimalware solution available at no cost for PCs running genuine Windows®.
    You can learn more about Microsoft® Security Essentials or download it at www.microsoft.com/security_essentials.
    • Edited by DustinC24 Friday, March 19, 2010 3:23 AM Formatting
    Friday, March 19, 2010 3:23 AM

Answers

  • Since you are correct that this isn't the place to be asking about Forefront, I won't go into deep detali, but I will provide the basic answer and links to where you can learn everything you'd like to know.

    First, yes you can run the Forefront Client Security (FCS) Agents standalone, though of course this will mean no central management or monitoring.  In fact, unlike MSE, you can even run them on your server(s), whether 32 or 64-bit.  I know this because I'm doing it myself on a few Windows Server 2003 standalone systems that don't even use Active Directory, as well as two Windows Server 2003 x64 systems that are part of an AD domain.

    The details of how to do this are a bit manual, but not really difficult and can be found at this link.

    http://forums.forefrontsecurity.org/default.aspx?g=posts&t=398

    The ForefrontSecurity.ORG Forums where the above thread is found appear to be a valuable resource for any other questions you may have.

    http://forums.forefrontsecurity.org/

    The following FCS Pricing and Licensing page should give an idea of the client costs.

    http://www.microsoft.com/forefront/clientsecurity/en/us/pricing-licensing.aspx

    I know I've found a Small and Medium Business Pricing sheet in the past which actually suggested that those with less than 25 clients buy them without the management, since this piece runs about $2,500 including the SQL Server 2005 Enterprise Edition license that's required, though only $98 if you already have this SQL license.  The included SQL Server can only support the Forefront management though and can't be used for anything else.

    While on the forums mentioned above, look in the FCS Announcements section and you'll find the following:

    "Today we are announcing a schedule and strategy update for Forefront Endpoint Protection 2010, a component of the upcoming Forefront Protection Suite (previously codenamed “Stirling.”)

    We are delaying the release Forefront Endpoint Protection 2010 - anti-malware for Windows desktops and servers - until the second half of 2010. Based on customer feedback and market trends, we have made the strategic decision to build Forefront Endpoint Protection (FEP) on System Center Configuration Manager, Microsoft’s solution to comprehensively assess, deploy, and update servers, clients, and devices. This approach better aligns our customers’ client management and security infrastructure, helping simplify deployment and reduce costs."

     The above should result in simplified mangement and reduced cost in the long run, so you may be able to add a more cost effective mangement ability when this becomes available around the end of this year.  In any case, some of the new advanced features such as Dynamic Signature Service that were added into MSE during its design were expected to be included when this version of Forefront is released.

    So if you get involved now by using the existing client in standalone mode you should be informed when the new version and its management abilities become available, though it may require a reinstall at that point to support the centralized management.

    Rob

    Friday, March 19, 2010 6:25 AM
    Moderator