Mark Your Calendars for Oct. 18: The R2 Wave is Coming!

Mark Your Calendars for Oct. 18: The R2 Wave is Coming!

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As some of you may have already noticed, earlier this morning Microsoft announced that Windows 8.1 will be available to consumers and businesses worldwide on October 18, 2013

But before you start your 8.1 party (with a DJ in a data center, for example), there’s even more good news: 

I'm excited to announce that, on the same day, eligible customers will be able to download Windows Server 2012 R2 and System Center 2012 R2, as well as the latest update to Windows Intune!  We’ll make evaluation versions available through the TechNet Evaluation Center, and these products will be available for new purchases when they hit the price list on November 1st.

Is it a coincidence that this will be 501st anniversary of Michelangelo exhibiting the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel for the first time?  If you love great works of art, then it’s up to you to decide.

Just a few weeks ago I wrote about the common planning efforts and engineering milestones we shared during the development of this R2 wave – and seeing these products and services become generally available on the same day (with all their integrated scenarios!) is the ultimate benefit!

I encourage you to keep learning about the 2012 R2 releases via our “What’s New in 2012 R2” series on this blog, and also download the preview bits if you haven’t already done it.

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  • Great News!   Looking forward to 2012 R2 the most but 8.1 is going to bring a lot of folks in.

  • Good News - When will MSDN / Technet get it?

  • Any estimate of when the DPM 2012 R2 Preview bits will be available?

  • Will the 2012 R2 update be free like the 8.1 update?

  • After some rumors VL and MSDN customers will get the final bits on the 16th of this month. Technet customers will have to wait again like the public as i can see at the moment and that's very frustrating again because last year it was the same with Windows Server 2012 RTM. Why i pay for a technet subscription if i dont have any advantage like the earlier access as the public out there?

  • @mkunel does the same go for 8.1 RT RTM? Will here be a process for getting this onto RT devices if you are a VL customer at the same time as 8.1 for x64/86?

  • Thanks for the questions and feedback.

    MSDN & TN availability is 10/18.  The DPM preview was released in June.

  • Brad i can understand if VL customer get earlier access to the RTM bits also earlier than MSDN and Technet Customers. But why dont geht MSDN and Technet customers, who also pay for it no earlier access than the pulic croud?

  • Sorry Brad i now read it twice..

  • So do TechNet subscribers get to download the actual "real" product ISO, or only an eval version?  This isn't clear...  MS also hasn't commented on whether they'll be uploading new ISO to those with TechNet subscriptions or not either for any product...

  • Can you clarify "eligible customers" and whether Windows Server 2012 R2 will be a FREE upgrade?


  • What about 2012 Essentials R2?  Same date?

  • @clark - FWIW, even if "real" (non-eval) versions of WS 2012 R2 or Windows 8.1 are available on TechNet, the software available on TechNet is no longer licensed for perpetual use (as of last year) - meaning even if it isn't time-bombed, anything you download now is only for evaluation and testing, and only for use until your subscription expires.

  • Will the Windows Server 2012 R2 have new CALs compared to Windows Server 2012 RTM? As we were hoping it would be available end of this month and have planned to purchase some CAL-s and now that it has been pushed back by 2 months will need to know if we need to push the purchase back also?

  • Hi,

    Is there a date set yet for when technet subscribers will be able to download?