The SharePoint Capacity Planning Tool is the latest prescriptive guidance tool from Microsoft. It’s free and allows architects and TDMs to plan SharePoint (WSS as well as MOSS) infrastructure requirements upfront.

In the past I have taken MS guidelines, best practices, hardware vendor advice and tons of experience from past projects to churn out quantative numbers and SharePoint infrastructure recommendations. Seems it just got a bit easier! I can see this tool being very handy in presales and technical review sessions with clients. Typical business scenarios addressed by the tool:

  • I don’t know if I need 10 Servers or 1 server to meet the needs of my large law firm of 1000 users.
  • Should I buy 10 Server CALs or 5?  I know I need something to get started, but not sure where to start.
  • I’m confused by the capacity planning documentation; I wish I just had a tool I could put in a few inputs to get me started.
  • I’ve used the HP capacity planning tool and I have a pretty good idea of what I want to do, but I would like a more platform agnostic view.
  • My deployment is blocked until I can figure out what kind of topology I should be running to get basic high availability

This tool is in beta and will be released at a later stage. I am testing it at the moment via the connect program and will provide feedback on initial tests.