The MAP Toolkit team is pleased to announce MAP Toolkit 8.0 beta.  MAP Toolkit 8.0 beta has rich feature set to plan and prepare your environment to adopt next wave of Microsoft products and cloud services. The MAP Toolkit has readiness assessments that range from desktop to cloud -- Windows 8 to Windows Azure.  

The MAP Toolkit 8.0 Beta program is open for general testing today and we encourage you to register, download and try MAP Toolkit 8.0 beta in your environment as you prepare your IT infrastructure to evaluate and deploy the latest Microsoft products and cloud services.

MAP Toolkit 8.0 Beta is available for download here

MAP Toolkit 8.0 has completely revamped modern user interface, which provides easy and clear access to assessment scenarios supported in MAP Toolkit and assessment summaries and results.  If you have used a prior version of the MAP Toolkit, you will find MAP Toolkit 8.0 much easier and simpler to navigate, find and run assessment scenarios you are interested and review the assessment results. 

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Following are some of the key assessment scenarios in the MAP Toolkit 8.0:

Windows Server 2012 Readiness

MAP 8.0 Beta assesses the readiness of your IT infrastructure for deploying Windows Server 2012. This assessment includes detailed and actionable recommendations indicating which machines meet Windows Server 2012 system requirements and which may need hardware updates. A comprehensive inventory of servers, operating systems, workloads, devices, and server roles is included to help in your planning efforts.

Windows 8 Readiness Assessment

MAP 8.0 Beta assesses the readiness of your IT environment for a Windows 8 deployment. This assessment evaluates your existing hardware against the recommended system requirements for Windows 8. It provides recommendations detailing which machines meet the requirements and which may need hardware upgrades.

Office 2013 and Office 365 Readiness Assessments

MAP 8.0 Beta assesses readiness for Office 2013 and provides an in-depth assessment of client desktops for upgrading or migration. It also offers support for Office 365 features such as web apps, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, or full Office 365 client support.

Windows Azure Virtual Machines Migration Recommendation

MAP 8.0 Beta performs a comprehensive assessment of Windows Server and Linux machines to determine if a migration to Windows Azure Virtual Machines is possible. The toolkit then offers suggested changes to prepare the machines for migration. Key features help you reduce the operating costs of hosting on-premise servers as well as estimating the required size and monthly network and storage usage required to migrate on-premise Windows and Linux servers to Windows Azure Virtual Machines using the data from the environment.

Software usage assessment for Lync

MAP 8.0 Beta’s Lync Enterprise and Usage Tracking feature counts the number of Lync Enterprise/Plus users as well as device activities for determining the number of required client access licenses (CAL). For Lync 2010, MAP provides a server inventory and software usage by device and user for Lync Standard features. MAP’s updated Software Usage Tracking feature provides consistent software usage reports for key Microsoft products including Windows Server, SQL Server, System Center, Forefront Endpoint Protection (FEP), and Lync.

Starting today, beta program will be open for six weeks and will end on Dec 14th, 2012. You can participate in beta by downloading and running MAP Toolkit 8.0 beta in your environment. 

MAP Toolkit 8.0 Beta is available for download here

Your participation and feedback is very important to make the MAP Toolkit work better for you. We encourage you to participate in the beta program and provide your feedback at mapfdbk@microsoft.com or through one of our surveys.