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Mitch Irsfeld

TechNet Flash, Volume 14, Issue 6 - March 14, 2012
TechNet Flash Editor's Note from Mitch Irsfeld

Cloud-Optimize Your IT

While end users are certainly getting excited about the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, IT organizations also have plenty to look forward to with the reimagined Windows Server "8," possibly the most significant release of Windows Server, well, ever. With hundreds of new features, it builds on the skills and investment you've already made to enable a scalable, dynamic, and multitenant-aware, cloud-optimized infrastructure.

At this stage in the release cycle, we'd like to get you up to speed on what's new and changed in the upcoming server environment. The TechNet Library now has several new documents in what promises to be a wealth of guidance on Windows Server "8." Start with What’s New in Windows Server “8,” which focuses on the changes that will potentially have the greatest impact on your use of this release. Then check out Jeffrey Snover's blog post on the Windows Server “8” Administrative Experience for a look at server management improvements that lead to greater simplicity, richness, and power.

It's still early, and much of the guidance for IT pros is yet to come, but you can download the Windows Server "8" Beta, read the Windows Server "8" Beta release notes to learn about the most critical known issues, and find information about installing the Windows Server "8" Beta.

As we've all heard, the new Metro style user interface is one of the most obvious changes. A new article, Common Management Tasks and Navigation in Windows Server "8" Beta, provides a quick tutorial on finding and opening common management tools, creating shortcuts to frequently-used programs, running programs with elevated privileges, and performing other common tasks.

Wondering how the new server environment enhances your IT infrastructure? The Technical Preview for Windows Server "8" is a high-level overview of the new and improved features in Windows Server "8," and covers the new features and capabilities in Active Directory, Failover Clustering, file and storage services, Hyper-V, management, networking Remote Desktop Services, and Server Core.

What this all means is that you can do a lot more with Windows Server "8," including delivering infrastructure as a service or building hosted services. To understand some of the new scenarios enabled by Windows Server "8," check out the Technical Scenarios for Windows Server "8" Beta and pay particular attention to the Windows To Go: Scenario Overview, which describes a new enterprise feature that enables users to boot Windows from a USB-connected external drive and use the same image enterprises use for their desktops and laptops.

For a slightly more structured learning experience, a brand-new course from Microsoft Virtual Academy - Windows Server "8" First Look - covers how the new platform takes you beyond virtualization, opens the door to every app on any cloud, and enables a more flexible work style for your users.

Finally, if you have yet to download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, go ahead and see what all the excitement is about.

Thanks for reading,

Mitch Irsfeld
Editor, TechNet Flash

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