Brian Blogs on SharePoint

Information, curiosities, and observations about SharePoint and the community.

SharePoint Designer is now a free download

Posted by Brian Gough on April 2, 2009

Here is what Microsoft is releasing about SharePoint Designer becoming a free download….

 

 

SharePoint Designer 2007
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Licensing Changes
April 2, 2009

SUMMARY

         Customers tell us that a significant part of the customization capabilities of SharePoint Designer 2007 are seen as an extension of what SharePoint already does.

         In order to continue promoting custom solutions built on SharePoint, and based on this customer feedback, we are making SharePoint Designer 2007 available as a free download starting on April 2, 2009.

         Customers on active Software Assurance as of April 1, 2009 will get rights to Expression Web.

GENERAL

1.        What is Microsoft announcing?
One of the key aspects of the SharePoint value proposition is its ability to support customized solutions built on our platform. Our strategy is to facilitate the creation of these customizations and allow our customers to make the most of their overall investments in SharePoint. In addition, we hear more and more that customers want to be able to create dynamic web sites on SharePoint. Based on this feedback from our customers, we are making SharePoint Designer 2007 available as a free download starting on April 2, 2009.  To “make it right” with our Software Assurance (SA) customers, those customers on Software Assurance for SharePoint Designer 2007 as of April 1, 2009, will be granted rights to Expression Web.

2.        What exactly are “SharePoint customizations” and why are they important to Microsoft’s strategic direction?
Our different SharePoint server offerings provide a number of capabilities that can help improve organizational effectiveness through comprehensive content management and enterprise search, support for shared business processes and workflows, and capabilities for information-sharing and better business insight, across intranet, extranet, and internet-facing applications, all within one platform. SharePoint customizations include sophisticated no-code solutions such as Data Views, reports, and workflow tracking built by our customers quickly and easily using menus, task panes, and templates. In addition, our platform provides IT professionals and developers with the building blocks and tools for interoperability and extensibility that they need to build customized business solutions on SharePoint.

3.        What is the value of this to me as a customer?
SharePoint delivers great out-of-the-box functionality. However, the majority of our customers use SharePoint to create custom portal solutions, extranets and intranets, internet-facing sites, collaboration solutions, social networking sites, business processes, and internal applications on top of the extensive capabilities of SharePoint to fulfill their specific business needs. In addition, through SharePoint customizations, customers can integrate and extend their existing enterprise applications to improve the productivity of an organization, increase its agility, and to obtain higher returns on these application investments.

4.        Is this product change in reaction to our competitors or other external circumstances, such as the current economy?

As part of Microsoft’s regular strategy reviews, we consulted with many of our customers. Their feedback consistently stressed the value of SharePoint customizations for their business. They also expressed to us how many of the capabilities of SharePoint Designer are seen as “natural” capabilities of SharePoint.

5.        What are they key things I should know as a customer?
You should know the following:

o    Our strategy is to ensure that customers create more and more customizations on SharePoint. We want customers to see the value of SharePoint Designer through their overall investment in SharePoint, and we want to continue helping our customers create dynamic and sophisticated user experiences in SharePoint.

o    SharePoint Designer will be available as a free download starting on April 2, 2009.

o    Customers should not be purchasing any more licenses of SharePoint Designer, but instead download the product for free at our site (

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