Tonight Microsoft has made available the public preview release of Windows Server 2012 R2. With this release, Microsoft is laying out its vision for what it calls the Cloud OS.
The Cloud OS is the platform that Microsoft is building with the release of Windows Server 2012 R2, System Center 2012 R2, SQL Server 2014 and Windows Azure. The four key tenets of the Cloud OS are:
- Transform the Datacenter
- Enable modern business applications
- Empower people-centric IT
- Unlock insights on any data
New to Windows Server 2012 R2 are such features as:
- Storage Tiering within Storage Spaces
- Software-defined networking
- Virtual IP Address management
- Windows Powershell 4.0
- Windows Server Essentials Experience
To get started with the Windows Server 2012 R2 Preview, go to http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/dn205286.aspx
Microsoft have released a series of guides to build Test Labs to check out various new features in Windows Server “8.” I’ve included a list below to some of the guides.
Test Lab Guide: Base Test Lab Guide for Windows Server “8” Beta – This Microsoft Test Lab Guide (TLG) provides you with step-by-step instructions to create the Windows Base Configuration test lab, using computers running Windows 8 Consumer Preview or Windows Server “8” Beta.
Test Lab Guide: Demonstrate High Availability Printing in Windows Server “8” Beta – This paper contains an introduction to Windows Server “8” Beta Printing and step-by-step instructions for extending the Test Lab Guide Base Configuration to demonstrate High Availability Printing.
This morning, Microsoft announced the release of the Windows Server “8” beta. Windows Server “8” is the successor to Windows Server 2008 R2 and is a member of the Windows 8 family.
Microsoft has four pillars around the release of Windows Server “8”:
– Windows Server “8” goes beyond virtualization – With this release, Microsoft is building an infrastructure capable of running much more than a simple virtual machine. Features are being built in that enable new public and private cloud based scenarios.
– Windows Server “8” brings the power of many servers and the simplicity of one – New features are added that enable users to take better advantage of commodity storage, provide simplification to server management, and provide uptime in a better and more cost-effective manner.
– Windows Server “8” is designed for every app and every cloud – Server “8” will enable flexibility in deploying applications on-premise or in the cloud or a combination thereof using similar tools and frameworks. Windows Server “8” will be highly scalable and elastic providing for better density and efficiency, as well as providing a better platform for hosting providers.
– Windows Server “8” enables the modern workstyle – Server “8” enables enterprises to offer access to corporate data and applications on any device while providing a secure and seamless experience no matter where users are in the world.
Microsoft’s Bill Laing has a post for more on Windows Server “8” that I highly suggest reading.
If you want to download and evaluate Windows Server “8”, click here.