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Windows Server 2012 (aka The Modern Cloud OS) has been out for over 6 months now

With Windows Server 2012, Microsoft delivers a server platform built on our experience of building and operating many of the world's largest cloud-based services and datacenter. Whether you are setting-up a single server for your small business or architecting a major new datacenter environment, Windows Server 2012 will help you cloud-optimize your IT so you can fully meet your organization's unique needs. Windows Server 2012 is;

  • Modern platform for the world’s apps
  • Transforms the datacenter
  • Enables modern apps
  • Unlocks insights on any data
  • Empowers people-centric IT

 

Windows Server 2012 Rapid Deployment Program TCO Study Whitepaper 

If you are interested to see how Windows Server 2012 has helped reduce Total Cost of Ownership with our customers that already deployed it, please see this whitepaper.

TechNet: Windows Server 2012 Technical Library

This library provides the core content that IT pros need to evaluate, plan, deploy, manage, troubleshoot, and support servers running the Windows Server 2012 operating system.

  • What's New in Windows Server 2012
  • Technical Scenarios for Windows Server 2012
  • Install and Deploy Windows Server 2012
  • Migrate Roles and Features to Windows Server 2012
  • Secure Windows Server 2012
  • Manage Privacy in Windows Server 2012
  • Support Windows Server 2012
  • Server Roles and Technologies in Windows Server 2012
  • Management and Tools for Windows Server 2012

Independent Study: The Total Economic Impact of Windows Server 2012

This study conducted by Forrester Consulting is now available which uses their Total Economic Impact methodology to explore the potential costs and benefits of Windows Server 2012. Forrester also stated in the study that, “The data collected in this study indicates that deploying Windows Server 2012 has the potential to provide a solid ROI through quantifiable benefits, most notably increased scale, performance and flexibility with Hyper-V, the enablement of software defined networking with Network Virtualization, and improved storage integration & management.”

Overall, the study estimates a 6-month payback and 3-year risk-adjusted estimated ROI of 195% for a composite organization of 14,000 employees, which is based on the characteristics of the companies interviewed.

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Simplify Deployment of Windows Server 2012 with MDT 2012 Update 1

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2012 Update 1 is now available and expands your deployment capabilities with support for the latest software releases, including Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, and System Center 2012 Configuration Manager SP1 Community Technology Preview.

Assess Windows Server 2012 Readiness with MAP

Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) Toolkit 7.0 is now available for download with detailed and actionable recommendations, indicating the machines that meet Windows Server 2012 system requirements and which may require hardware updates. A comprehensive inventory of servers, operating systems, workloads, devices, and server roles is included to help in planning efforts.

Configuring and Managing Server Core Installations

This collection of topics provides the information needed to install and deploy Server Core servers; install, manage, and uninstall server roles and features; and manage the server locally or remotely. It also includes a quick reference table of common tasks and the commands for accomplishing them locally on a Server Core server.

Secure your Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8 clients with Microsoft Security Compliance Manager

The Security Compliance Manager (SCM) is a free tool from the Microsoft Solution Accelerators team that enables you to quickly configure and manage the computers in your environment and your private cloud using Group Policy and Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager. Microsoft Security Compliance Manager 3.0 is now available for download! SCM 3.0 includes new baselines for Windows Server 2012, Windows 8, Internet Explorer 10, an enhanced setting library, and new functionality to LocalGPO.

 

What’s New in Windows Server 2012

Find out what's New in Windows Server 2012. This content focuses on changes that will potentially have the greatest impact on your use of this release. I would highly recommend checking out the Hyper-V and Storage new features and improvements.

So, Why Hyper-V? Let’s take a look at Competitive Advantage of Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V over VMWare vSphere 5.1

If you’ve ever been curious to see Why Hyper-V is one of the leaders in the Server Virtualization space and how it compares to the latest release of VMWare vSphere 5.1, you’ll enjoy reading this whitepaper.

 

 

7 ways Windows Server 2012 pays for itself

I was reading InfoWorld article below and thought you’d also like to see what other people are saying about Windows Server 2012 and how they can go forward with their IT with the speed of tomorrow

  1. Storage Spaces
  2. Hyper-V
  3. PowerShell 3.0
  4. Failover Clusters
  5. Data DeDup
  6. SMB 3.0
  7. Scale-Out File Servers
                 

How would you like to virtualize most business critical applications on Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V with confidence?

While Microsoft Virtualization Product team confirmed that now 99% of ClassA applications in the world can be virtualized on Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V, ESG Labs has also conducted an independent evaluation of Hyper-V and you can find the results here.

 

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The key findings from ESG Labs were:

  • With Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V’s new support for up to 64 vCPUs, ESG Lab took an existing SQL Server 2012 OLTP workload that was previously vCPU limited and increased the performance by six times, while the average transaction response times improved by five times.
  • Manageably-low Hyper-V overhead of 6.3% was recorded when comparing SQL Server 2012 OLTP workload performance of a physical server to a virtual machine configured with the same number of virtual CPU cores and the same amount of RAM.

Windows Server 2012 Storage Whitepaper

Microsoft is introducing several new storage features and capabilities with Microsoft Windows Server® 2012. These innovative features and capabilities extend functionality in profound ways, including the ability to leverage inexpensive storage to create highly available, robust, and high performing storage solutions. These new Microsoft storage capabilities add dynamic functionality on each server and can work together to further enhance functionality at scale in large enterprise environments. This paper outlines these new features and capabilities and how they integrate, co-exist, and complement one another to extend the capabilities of your entire storage infrastructure. Also, wanted to let you know that a new report benchmarking various Storage features in Windows Server 2012 is now available online. The report can be downloaded here.

          

So, How about some Trainings?

Windows Server 2012 Technical Overview Courses on Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA)

For you IT Admins, these free courses provide lots of value to head start your journey toward adapting Windows Server 2012. This course is designed to provide you with the key details of Windows Server 2012. The seven modules in this course, through video and whitepaper, provide details of the new capabilities, features, and solutions built into the product. With so many new features to cover, this course is designed to be the introduction to Windows Server 2012.

Windows Server 2012 Test Lab Guides

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The Windows Server 2012 Test Lab Guides (TLGs) are a set of documents that describe how to configure and demonstrate the new features and functionality in Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8 in a simplified and standardized test lab environment. There are many different scenarios that you could use to build a test lab in your test/dev environment. If you’re interested in Test Lab Guides for other Microsoft solutions and products, please see here or follow their blog here.

 

Windows Server 2012 Virtual Labs

Experience Windows Server 2012 firsthand in these virtual labs. You can test drive new and improved features and functionality through deep end-to-end scenarios or specific features, including server management and Windows PowerShell, networking, Hyper-V, and new storage solutions. These are Microsoft Cloud hosted Virtual Labs that you can start from your PC and enjoy the free learning experience without even needing to stand up a lab environment. If you are interested in more virtual labs, please see here. Enjoy!

Free Books

Free Windows Server 2012 (RTM) eBook is Available Now

Mitch Tulloch has updated his very popular free ebook on Windows Server 2012 based on the RTM version of the software. A key feature of this book is the inclusion of sidebars written by members of the Windows Server team, Microsoft Support engineers, Microsoft Consulting Services staff, and others who work at Microsoft. These sidebars provide an insider’s perspective that includes both “under-the-hood” information concerning how features work, and strategies, tips, and best practices from experts who have been working with the platform during product development. If you are into eReaders, you can also download the ePub and Mobi versions for free.

Free ebook: Introducing Windows 8: An Overview for IT Professionals (Final Edition)

Get a headstart evaluating Window 8 - guided by a Windows expert who’s worked extensively with the software since the preview releases. Based on final, release-to-manufacturing (RTM) software, this book introduces new features and capabilities, with scenario-based insights demonstrating how to plan for, implement, and maintain Windows 8 in an enterprise environment. Get the high-level information you need to begin preparing your deployment now.

  • Topics include:
  • Performance, reliability, and security features
  • Deployment options
  • Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit
  • Windows PowerShell™ 3.0 and Group Policy
  • Managing and sideloading apps
  • Internet Explorer® 10
  • Virtualization, Client Hyper-V, and Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack
  • Recovery features

More Resources

Real impact for lean government

http://www.microsoft.com/industry/government/guides/Lean-Gov/default.aspx

Microsoft Private Cloud Solutions

http://www.cloudassessmenttool.com

Did you Know these facts?

http://www.didyouknow2012.com

Making government lean with virtualization and private cloud

http://www.microsoft.com/government/ww/public-services/blog/Pages/post.aspx?postID=255&aID=66

Microsoft Government

http://www.microsoft.com/government/en-us/state/pages/default.aspx

Microsoft Government Cloud Computing

http://www.microsoft.com/industry/government/guides/cloud_computing/default.aspx

Microsoft Government Server Virtualization

http://www.microsoft.com/industry/government/solutions/Server_Virtualization/default.aspx