Lutz Ziob, General Manager of Microsoft Learning, has written a great post on the Windows Server Blog.

He discusses the number of people trained to date in this product and gives a great overview of the change in training portfolio:

"I am very excited to announce that over 3,100 Windows Server 2008 certifications have already been earned to date – and this with the launch of the product roughly three months away. In addition, because we started so early, over 140,000 IT pros and developers have been trained on Windows Server 2008 and Visual Studio 2008 to date.  By launch time in late February, Microsoft Learning will have trained 300,000 people globally, and we expect that number to rise to over 700,000 by August.

The reason these numbers are so important for us and to our customers is that we believe early readiness equals competitive advantage  -- for both companies and individuals. We know that skills are either a barrier or an enhancer of an individual’s (and therefore a company’s) overall success.

Microsoft Learning gives IT pros and developers a head start on transitioning their skills and credentials to Windows Server 2008 technologies—or to begin with a new certification. We offer a complete set of training, resources, and streamlined certification paths to help IT pros and developers stand out in their field – in whatever learning style suits them best – in-person instructor-led, online, distance learning, or through books. In short, if you want to know more about Windows Server 2008, you can learn in your preferred style, mostly in your own language, and at your own pace.

The Windows Server 2008 Certification portfolio consists of five distinct certifications. Two are job role-specific and three are technology-specific. The job role certifications are:

o Server Administrator

o Enterprise Administrator

The technology certifications are called:

o Network Infrastructure Configuration

o Active Directory Configuration

o Application Infrastructure Configuration

The training and exam portfolio includes:

o content in ten languages

o 180 days of Instructor-led training

o 7 exams, 5 certifications

o 600 hours of Microsoft E-Learning

o 28 Microsoft Press Books