Today, We streamed a webcast featuring Bob Muglia to kick off the launch of Windows Server 2003 R2. The webcast included key R2 news announcements, product messages, customer testimonials, product demonstration and supporting videos from key OEM partners.
On demand viewing of the launch webcast, along with other product demonstrations, is available on the public Windows Server 2003 R2 launch site: http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/R2launch.mspx
I'd like to encourage everybody to watch this webcast and learn about R2. As Bob Muglia states, “R2 defines the next step for Windows Server; it delivers great value to customers, and ensures that our server business will continue to grow in the years to come.”
Some key highlights
I was watching the development of this product closely as I felt that it would be a good indicator on how we are doing from a product development perspective. Probably similar to many of you I get caught up in the media rumours and as such I was happy to see this product get delivered without delay. I'm feeling and hoping that R2 is a good example of how we are going to deliver innovative, secure and valuable server solutions to you in a predictable and timely manner.
Full press release here http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2005/dec05/12-06WS03R2RTMPR.mspx .
I found this article from ENT News, http://entmag.com/news/article.asp?editorialsid=7071, and its associated side links are useful for providing a synopsis of this release of 2003 R2 and others such as CRM 3.0 and the major price cut on Virtual Server R2 Enterprise Edition.
Of particular note are these quoted items:
The early December RTM means general availability isn't guaranteed until early February 2006.
Branch office improvements…nearly 25 percent of the installed base of x86 servers in the United States are in remote locations. As for storage improvements…SAN costs are coming down [but] management costs are not.
R2 is more compatible than a service pack update [and has a] focus on the ability to seamlessly install.
Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 is now officially scheduled for release in the second quarter of 2006.
Windows Storage Server 2003 R2-based systems would appear in the first half of 2006.