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Mitch Irsfeld

TechNet Flash, Volume 15, Issue 2 - January 23, 2013
TechNet Flash Editor's Note from Mitch Irsfeld

System Center 2012 SP1 release clarifies the Cloud OS

With the final release of System Center 2012 Service Pack 1 (SP1), the Microsoft Cloud OS vision continues to sharpen. In combination with Windows Server 2012 and Windows Azure, IT organizations can now use a single platform to build and manage their infrastructure, data, and applications across datacenters, hosted datacenters, and the Microsoft public cloud.

To get started, an understanding of the integrated technology approach that we call the "Cloud OS" is in order. Michael Park, vice president of marketing in Microsoft's Server & Tools Business, does a good job of laying out this vision in his post titled What is the Cloud OS?, on the Official Microsoft Blog.

With the SP1 release, all the System Center 2012 components can now run in a Windows Server 2012 environment, and this enables several new capabilities that go into the Cloud OS. For example, a single instance of System Center 2012 Virtual Machine Manager can now support up to 8,000 virtual machines on clusters of up to 64 hosts. The Windows Server 2012 support also builds on the Hyper-V capability of having multi-tenant virtual networks on a shared physical network, entirely defined in software. System Center 2012 SP1 adds the ability to dynamically reconfigure entire networks.

New hybrid cloud management capabilities extend the App Controller's capabilities to integrate cloud resources offered by host service providers, giving you the ability to manage on- and off-premises resources using the same management interface. The App Controller component in SP1 integrates with the preview of Windows Azure Virtual Machines, enabling you to migrate on-premises virtual machines to run in Windows Azure, and to manage them from your on-premises System Center installation. Meanwhile, the Data Protection Manager component in SP1 adds the option to host server backups in the Windows Azure cloud.

For more on the new capabilities, check out What's New in System Center 2012 SP1 for details on each of the System Center 2012 components. For an overview of each System Center component in its role as a programmable platform to be leveraged for the Microsoft private cloud, read the System Center 2012 Integration Guide.

For your own evaluation, download Microsoft System Center private cloud evaluation software, which includes System Center 2012 SP1 plus an optional Windows Server 2012 download.

In the next edition, we'll focus on the other leg of unified management for the Cloud OS: Windows Intune for managing devices across private, hosted, and public clouds.

Thanks for reading,

Mitch Irsfeld
Editor, TechNet Flash

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