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[Today’s post comes to us courtesy Joe Nalewabau from Windows Server Essentials Team]
Now that the beta for Windows Server 2012 Essentials (Essentials 2012) has been released, many customers and partners have asked for a “feature list” for Essentials 2012.
I’ve taken the major features for Essentials 2012 and broken them down into the following categories:
From a broad feature perspective, Essentials 2012 builds on the existing feature set in Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials (SBS 2011 Essentials). We started there and through the planning and development phase used a number of principles to guide our work. In my recent post on the Window Server blog, I described some of the Essentials 2012 features, and in this post I have reused the same general descriptions of those features.
Data protection has always been a key feature in all of the products our team has produced (in fact we have a dedicated feature team for data protection). The major data protection features we have enhanced or added in Essentials 2012 include:
Anywhere Access is a term we use to cover the various ways that customers can access their server, whether they are using a remote PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone. Major updates and new features in this area include:
Core Infrastructure improvements
In this section I have listed some of the core infrastructure improvements that we have done in Essentials 2012. Major updates and new features in this area include:
A major area of flexibility for Essentials 2012 was providing partners and customers with the choice of where they wanted their email service to be located. In SBS 2011 Standard, email was installed and always assumed to be on‑premises. In SBS 2011 Essentials, we had an add-in for Office 365 connectivity, but no integration was possible with an existing Exchange Server running locally on a second server.
With Essentials 2012, there are three deployment options for messaging and collaboration services for which we provide an integrated management experience:
Feature lists are always difficult to write – there are always things you miss as well as different ways to organize the list, but I hope this has provided you with a helpful look at the new features and capabilities of Essentials 2012. Over the next few weeks we will be drilling into specific feature areas with much more detailed information.
If you haven’t already, please download the beta and give us feedback via the Windows Server 2012 Beta Essentials forum. We’d love to hear from you!
When are we going to see a Windows 8 Metro client available for evaluation. Also are you planning to make further changes to remote access web clients and DLNA spec. like ability to provide rich meta data information like art work, video/movie info etc.
we want some more detail information about windows 8 2012 features
Great blog post! I do have a question about the following statement:
“…RWA is an existing feature that many of our customers love. In Essentials 2012, we made a number of improvements with one of the biggest being making sure it works well on touch‑first devices such as the Windows 8 based touch devices, the iPad and Android tablet devices…”
I was wondering what exact functionality within the RWA it is you are referring here too. In particular, the RWA contains an option to connect to the Essentials server remotely. (this option: http://bit.ly/NKxWap). However, this is based of RD RemoteApp. That would not work on non-Windows devices like iPad’s and Android tablet devices right?
Freek Berson [MVP]
We do support tablet for RWA. You will need to install the RDP apps on the non-Windows devices first, for example, Itap RDP.
For details, please start a thread in the Windows Server 2012 Beta Essentials Forum.
I think its mad the WSE2012 has lost Excahnge and Sharepoint compared with SBS2011 ! surely the whole point is to give a small business an easy to manage, single server solution - so now they need three more complex servers ?
@ambulocetus27: Office 365 - heard of it?
Office 365 is not acceptable for many especially those who (1) want their email local and (2) cannot live with the restrictions Office 365 has on email sent (1500 "recipients", not emails, in a 24 hour period else that person is shut down for email until the next day ----- what business can operate that way!!!!!!!!!!!!! No real business).
Agree with ambulocetus27, why kill off an easy to deploy and easy to use product and make premise-based for small businesses so hard to deploy, now requiring multiple servers at a much higher total cost - have to buy Exchange separately, CALs, etc.
RWW is OK for some roles, but requires Windows Professional (et al). For those of our users on iPads, this solution clearly isn't acceptable (yes that's right, no desktop machine at all).
So will Essentials include RDC support? Or are we going to be forced onto Foundation/Standard to get that one feature? I don't care about paying for CALs, but losing all those great SBS features like client backup is a big pill to swallow.
Essentials have pretty much same RWA client experience as SBS/WHS 2011. It would be good if the web RWA client be made a bit metro style and offer pure HTML5 based video playback instead of silver light; a plugin that is not supported by Windows 8 Metro IE version. Changing layout of the site for tablets is not enough... it has to extend to better UI improvements because certain areas like shared folder explorer and media library can be further optimized for touch. You should also offer more extensive personalization support; like supporting themes (just on the same lines as plugins; add new if you need to)
Moreover the feature set need to be more than just porting from previous iterations; offering features like on the fly transcoding and better media player/slide show capabilities like complete playlist support and extending sharing to wider folks (virtually like skydrive) with similar social sharing capabilities
As a MediaSmart EX490 user, I'm interested in when new hardware running Win Server 2012 Essentials will be released?
We have SBS 2011 which includes Exchange and Sharepoint. What is the upgrade / migration path for SBS 2011 users? Would we just leave the Exchange 2010 and SharePoint running on the old SBS 2011 server?
I think MS misses with exchange in the cloud the International Safe Harbor Privacy Principles. And the price between SBS and Windows Server 2012 Essentials is a 3 times higher.
And nice you closed the comments for this: blogs.technet.com/.../windows-small-business-server-essentials-becomes-windows-server-2012-essentials.aspx
One of the good backup/recovery solution I have found for windows server is acronis backup for windows server 11.5, here is a review and features comparison with paragon backup and recovery
Windows Server 2012 Essentials OEM License work if not promote to domain controller ?
i also love acronis, it's very reliable and supports Windows Server 2012 as well, you can also find reviews here: