For example, a new mid-range desktop computer might run you about $700 (including taxes and shipping). Now, that machine needs to be installed on your network and configured for your business. That means software licenses for anti-virus, office productivity and all the special software tools you use in your work. Then you need to pay for routine maintenance.
As you can quickly figure out, the cost of the physical equipment is the cheapest part of the equation. When you total all those costs together, your $700 computer suddenly costs somewhere around $1500-2000 per year (or more depending on your software needs!).
Servers are no different, except they are much more expensive. In addition to software and maintenance, you also need to factor in the costs of configuration and setup of the server to function properly.
The reality is that computers are cheap. Configuration and maintenance is where you'll find the real costs. So, budget accordingly! Don't get caught by surprise.
Read more! Choose from the rest of my "Where's the Cost In...?" series: