If I had a pound for every customer that had said to me "I would love to deploy a test of.....[insert name of random Microsoft product here].... but cant because we don't have a test environment", I would..... well I would still be sat here and not on a beach on the Caribbean but at least I'd have a healthy coffee fund to help me through the day.

For all those struggling to test out the latest and greatest I have the perfect solution, and it kills two proverbial birds with one rather polished stone. the instructions below take you through how to set up a trial of Windows Server 2012 on Windows Azure for free, for 90 days.

Rob York
Premier Field Engineer

Try Windows Server 2012 right now on Windows Azure

Are you ready to try the Windows Server 2012 operating system in minutes with no test hardware required? Without downloading an ISO or VHD file or installing anything, you can be up and running in just a few steps.

Step 1 – Sign up for a FREE 90-day trial of Windows Azure

  • In a few short steps, enable your trial and get access to all of the Windows Azure services at no cost or obligation
  • The trial allows you to create several Windows Server 2012 Virtual Machines on our Windows Azure public cloud.
  • Join the thousands of others easily and efficiently experiencing Windows Server 2012 on Windows Azure.
  • With a few clicks, deploy a clean image from our gallery in just minutes.
  • Use Remote Desktop to manage your new virtual machine just like you would a physical server.
  • Test and evaluate Windows Server 2012 features on your fully functional virtual machine.
  • With Window Azure Virtual Network, securely link your new virtual machine to your data center, allowing it to interact with your existing resources.
  • Watch a quick demo on how to create and manage Windows Server 2012 Virtual Machines.
  • See how easy it is to manage a Windows Server 2012 Virtual Machine on Windows Azure
  • Connect your new Virtual Machines to your existing data center using a virtual private network.
  • Learn how to customized virtual hard disks running Windows Server 2012 and quickly deploy them on Windows Azure

Step 2 – Deploy a Windows Server 2012 Virtual Machine from our gallery of pre-built test images

Step 3 – Learn more about what you can do with Windows Server 2012 on Windows Azure

Continue the conversation!

Want to ask a question or join the community of Windows Azure Virtual Machine users? Check out our forums on Stack Overflow or MSDN .