This week saw the official launch of the new Core Edition of Univention Corporate Server. With this move, we are now making it possible to employ our successful Open Source system for server and IT management free of charge in companies too.

Why are we doing that and isn’t it against our business model?

Kostenlose Core EditionWith more than 60 enterprise applications available today, Univention Corporate Server is already the central integration platform for many organizations, where it is used to provide Corporate IT simply on premises or in the cloud and where it integrates easily in existing environments. More and more organizations, young and dynamic ones in particular, are utilising our product to bring their IT infrastructure under control with our product’s flexible identity management and Active Directory services.

In short: That’s the way it should be and we want to encourage this trend.

One of the most important points is that the necessity of concluding an agreement should never stand in the way of the use of UCS. In the past, we have all too often seen more poorly than well constructed environments. In the long term, such systems are simply not capable of meeting the expectations of the organizations in question. We want to make the software that has proven itself in thousands of installations also available for theses organizations right from the beginning, and allow users to be successful without being bound by a commercial agreement. For this reason, the Core Edition also features software maintenance and security updates. Of course, there is also the possibility of upgrading to the latest version of our product.

Our aims with the Core Edition

With the Core Edition, we hope to increase our spread even further, including in markets in which we as a company still cannot be active at this point in time. This will make our platform even more appealing, especially to the software developers who make their solutions available in our App Center. This again will be for the benefit of our end users, and also for cloud service providers, who employ UCS to realize integrated services and thus can access an even wider and better integrated selection of applications more quickly.

How do we expect to keep making money?

Of course, we have to and want to make money with our products, which is why there are a few, clearly defined distinctions between the Core Edition and the business subscriptions. The most important are certainly that with the business subscriptions we offer considerably longer software maintenance on the one hand, and on the other, only the business subscriptions have access to reliable service level agreements.

There is also another important change to our price model for smaller organizations: In addition to a server subscription, customers employing Univention Corporate Server to provide domain services within their company also require a subscription for the domain services. The new aspect is that the domain services for the first 10 clients within a domain are now included in each server subscription as standard. In organizations with 10 users and a Base subscription, this equates to a reduction in price of more than 30%. This allows us to offer small organizations too the possibility of accessing professional support and long-term maintenance at a highly competitive price.

Peter H. Ganten is the founder and CEO of Univention.

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