If you are a Volume Licensing customer, you have probably downloaded Windows Server 2008 already or you will be receiving it soon as part of your monthly DVD shipments.  As you start testing and getting ready for deployment, one thing you’ll need to plan for is Volume Activation.  Since we launched the Windows Server 2008 a couple of weeks ago, we have updated a few resources to help you understand activation better and make it easier to use in your existing environment.

Windows Server 2008 uses the same volume activation technology as Windows Vista, so if you are familiar in how it works for Vista, the same principles apply with some minor changes.  For more details, see Volume Activation 2.0 Changes for Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista SP1. On the other hand, if you are new to volume activation and need to ramp up quickly, there is a new Silverlight overview that goes over the basics and a KMS Setup Demo that you can download.  As well, we have updated most of the documents in the Volume Activation 2.0 Technical Guidance Center.

In addition to the new and updated content, we’ve updated the Key Management Service (KMS) for Windows Server 2003 so that you can run a single KMS host which supports volume license editions of both Windows Vista RTM & SP1 and Windows Server 2008.  The new KMS will also allow you to run it in a Windows Server 2003 virtual machine -- a big change from the original KMS.  If you plan to keep your KMS on WS2003, you’ll need this update right away.

KMS v1.1 for Windows Server 2003 is now available on the Microsoft Download Center at:

X86 (EN-US) - http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=82964

X64 (EN-US) - http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=83041

More details about the update are outlined on Michael Greene’s blog and on the download site.

Julius Sinkevicius