Mass spectrometry based proteomics is now widely used in the microbial sciences. In conjunction with transcriptomics it has greatly enhanced the field of microbial biology and has provide microbiologists with unparalleled insights into cellular processes and functions. Proteomics allows the dynamic nature of the entire protein network to be mapped providing a deeper understanding of microbial systems, their evolution and role in disease states. This review is intended to provide an overview of mass spectrometry and its application to the field of microbial proteomics. Background is provided on the core mass analyzers, including the Orbitrap mass spectrometer, and novel fragmentation processes such as Electron Transfer Dissociation which leave post-translational modifications intact on peptide backbones allowing for their identification and localization. The review will also provide information on current key quantitative technologies and the state of the art in microbial metaproteomics.