The wait is over & Windows 8 is not available for everyone !!!!

This release is an innovation in many ways hence if I start talking about what's new - the list would be very long. I am sure you'll love to explore it on your own when it comes down to working with the new interface etc.

In this space, I would like to share few very interesting & useful capabilities that Windows 8 offer for professionals -

 

1. Productive with tablet

With Windows 8 tablet, users can have a “no compromise” experience (specifically x86 Tablet). Users can take advantage of productivity benefits, while enjoying convenience / mobility on Tablet.

  • Touch-first Experience: A touch-first experience is ideal for today’s workers and users can experience new levels of productivity.
  • Keyboard, mouse, and pen support: supporting both multi-touch and traditional keyboard & mouse interfaces, Windows 8 provides an intuitive and productive way to work.
  • IT pros can manage and secure Windows 8 tablets, as they do for their PCs with the existing infrastructure and tools.

2. Your Portable Workspace - Windows To Go

•Windows 8 enables additional ultra-mobile workstyle through a bootable USB that turns almost any PC into a secure Windows 8 corporate PC.
•With Windows To Go, IT obtains a new deployment model for corporate environment to user. IT can provide a managed corporate image on a bootable USB drive, and users can boot Windows 8 corporate image from any compatible PC*.
Users can get their applications, data and personalized Windows environment the same way as a standard PC.

* Any compatible Host PC capable of running Win 8 (Vista or higher)

Let me take an example to illustrate a use case for WTG ( Windows to go ), at home user connects his Windows To Go USB drive to his personal laptop running Windows 7. Using the same process he followed back at the office, he uses his
apps and data to finish a project due the next morning on Windows 8 (on the USB key). It also automatically helps find the home WiFi he has, and DirectAccess works automatically in the background,allowing him to post the documents to his company SharePoint site.

When he logs offs and removes the USB from his personal PC, he feels good that no corporate data left on it. His IT department knows that the network is safe from security threats of his personal machine, because as a standard user, he
won’t be able to access or even see the hard-drive of his personal PC when his boots up the Windows To Go environment. And even if his USB slips out on his ride home, BitLocker encryption will keep the data safe. In addition, the Windows To Go solution provides tools to manage, patch, and provision his work environment with greater ease and speed, so he can be productive no matter what device she is using.

3. Work anywhere - DirectAccess & Branch Cache enhancements

We first introduces DirectAccess with Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2, and it was a great capability for users but hard for IT to deploy. A significant improvement for Windows 8 and DirectAccess is the ability to utilize existing
network infrastructure. In other words, deployment of DirectAccess does not require IT departments to deploy IPv6 (while still having opportunity to leverage the underlying security of IPv6) as they can use Windows Server 2012 to do address translation.

Windows8 and Windows Server 2012 offer advancements on BranchCache. Data traffic over a slow network is further optimized in terms of performance and user experience, whether user access or print large files or data.

4. End to end security

Security starts on the client itself, and there are new and emerging risks to be eliminated or mitigated. For instance, root kits, boot sector kits, and other types of malware can still find their way into systems through social engineering attacks or successful exploitation of vulnerabilities. These infections often hide and remain undetected at which point the device and the data on it are at risk of theft or exploitation.

To address these issues, Windows 8 includes Secured Boot and Windows Defender, which help prevent malware from being able to compromise and hide from the operating system and anti-malware software. Resistance from malware is further
enhanced with Internet Explorer’s 10’s SmartScreen and the Application Reputation web services, which prevent users from downloading unknown or malicious software. (Think of how much better it is to prevent malware from getting downloaded in
the first place than it is to have your anti-malware software detect an infection and clean the system after the fact!)

These Windows 8 features help protect the operating system and data from cyber-attacks, but what happens if the device is lost or stolen? In many cases the data on the device is at total risk, as data on unprotected drives can easily be viewed and copied. To address this risk, Windows 8 includes encryption technology, such as BitLocker and BitLocker To Go. 

Another new feature which is a great way to manage access, control etc is Dynamic Access Control.

Managing user access in a changing environment has always been a difficult challenge for IT. Addressing transitions such as when a user changes roles, departments, etc. often resulted in cases where users had difficulty gaining access to new
resources and often they retained access to resources that they should no longer have access to. With Dynamic access Control in Windows 8, access to resources is no longer managed with security groups. Instead, it’s managed with dynamic rules that have the
ability to look at the attributes of the user (department, title, etc.) to make access control decisions. These rules can also define polices that might require that the user PC is encrypted with BitLocker or that the user uses a second form of authentication when connected with DirectAccess.

 

Just wanted to touch base on the enterprise features of Windows 8..more to come on details of how to set-up each one of the capability in your enterprise/organization.

 

Go ahead & install Windows 8 to experience new era in computing :) http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx