Welcome to the start of TechEd North America 2013!  So far, we’ve kicked off the conference with a post and video on the new Microsoft Cloud OS YouTube channel from Microsoft Server and Tools President Satya Nadella discussing “The Enterprise Era”. We’ve also heard from Server & Tools Corporate Vice President Brad Anderson discuss new offerings in this morning’s keynote address.  If you didn’t see it live, you’ll be able to view it on demand, along with many of our TechNet sessions on Channel 9 here.

For more details on today’s news and announcements, visit the Server Cloud blog here, or find tips on how to help you get the most out of this week here

We’ve also selected a few stand out sessions for those of you with a particular interest in Windows Server, which includes newly released sessions on Windows Server 2012 R2.  We hope you enjoy these picks!   

Monday, June 3rd

  • Transform the Datacenter with Server and Management Innovations from Microsoft - Cloud computing models are changing the technology landscape and providing more opportunity than ever for IT to deliver impact to the business. This Foundational Session will dive into the new Microsoft datacenter technologies and demonstrate how you can be the best provider of technology for your organization. Learn how Windows Server, System Center, Windows Azure, and other new technologies work together to help you provision and manage cloud and datacenter infrastructure, provide business continuity, deliver services, and manage applications. This includes breakthrough capabilities in the areas of storage, networking, virtualization, management, and automation. You will also learn how the latest innovations bring together on-premises approaches and cloud-based technologies to deliver hybrid cloud solutions leveraging your existing resources. (Foundation Session, June 3, 2013 from 11:00AM to 12:00PM)
  • Windows In The Enterprise - This Foundational Session will focus on the latest enterprise capabilities and features of Windows to show you why Windows powers the best business tablets, how it empowers BYOD (bring your own device), makes your mobile users productive and connected, and enables you to create great business apps. (Foundation Session, June 3, 2013 from 11:00AM to 12:00PM)


  • Active Directory Deployment and Management Enhancements (repeats on 6/5 at 1:30pm) - In this lab, learn how to deploy Active Directory Domain Controllers with Windows Server 2012. Deploy domain controllers using the new Server Manager, as well as remote domain controllers using Windows PowerShell. Explore the new Active Directory Management tool and use its PowerShell History Viewer. (Instructor Led lab, June 3, 1:15 – 2:30 pm CT; June 5, 1:30 – 2:15 pm CT)
  • Hyper-V – What’s New in Windows Server 2012 R2 – Level 300 session with Ben Armstrong (New Session, June 3, 4:45 – 6 pm CT)
  • Understanding the Hyper-V over SMB Scenario, Configurations, and End-to-End Performance - We begin this session with a quick overview of the Hyper-V over SMB scenario, where we use remote file storage for your live Hyper-V files. Next, we share a few potential continuously available configurations providing specifics around the kind of Hyper-V hosts, networking and storage for each one. We conclude with a look at end-to-end performance and the most common bottlenecks for the Hyper-V over SMB scenario.  (Breakout Session, June 3, 4:45 – 6 pm)
  • Windows Server 2012 Deployment and Ongoing Management: Why Server Core Is Right for You - Windows Server 2012 provides greater deployment flexibility and richer ongoing management capabilities. We discuss new deployment options for Windows Server 2012 and its roles and features, including the ability to minimize server footprint using Features on Demand. This session also details the flexibility you can enjoy by seamlessly moving between Server Core (recommended), Minimal Server Interface or full GUI installations. We dive deep into Server Manager’s new multi-server remote management capabilities to see how it can centralize management across many servers with a rich unified view, tailored to your environment and the way you want to manage. By understanding the new deployment and management possibilities, you will leave prepared to design your deployments and plan your ongoing management. (Breakout Session, June 3, 4:45 – 6 pm CT)
  • Ask The Expert Picks - Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V  (Ask the Experts, June 3, 6:15 – 7:15pm CT)

Tuesday, June 4th

  • Infrastructure Services on Windows Azure: Virtual Machines and Virtual Networks with Mark Russinovich - This session gives an overview of the new Windows Azure infrastructure services (IaaS), including support for Windows Server and Linux persistent virtual machines, new networking capabilities for hybrid applications and on-premises/cloud connectivity, and support for applications that consist of PaaS and IaaS roles. Mark explains how IaaS fits into Windows Azure to extend existing server applications to cloud and shows demonstrations of IaaS VM deployment and complex multi-VM applications. (Breakout Session, June 4, 10:15 – 11:30 am CT)
  • Windows Server 2012 Failover Cluster Disaster Recovery: Everything You Need to Know to Prepare and Successfully Recover - In this demo-driven session we look at how to recover from various Failover Cluster disaster scenarios such as an accidental deletion of the Cluster Name Object, the loss of a shared cluster disk or loss of the quorum resource. We recover an entire Windows Server 2012 Failover Cluster including all of its resources using the Bare Metal Recovery feature of Windows Backup and have a look at how Microsoft System Center 2012 - Data Protection Manager can help with a successful recovery. We also look at how to perform an authoritative restore of the cluster database and recover all cluster resources in case of an accidental deletion. Learn everything you need to prepare for a successful recovery, what lessons we learned after working with many customers on their Windows Server Failover Cluster disaster recovery plans, and how issues were resolved. (Breakout Session, June 4, 10:15 – 11:30 am CT)

Wednesday, June 5th

  • Application Availability Strategies for the Private Cloud - Need to monitor the help state of your applications running on your private cloud? In Windows Server 2012 there are new ways to monitor application health state and have recovery inside of a virtual machine. This session details the new VM Monitoring feature in Windows Server 2012, and discusses Guest Clustering and changes in Windows Server 2012 (such as virtual FC), along with pros, cons and scenarios of when to use each. (Breakout Session, June 5, 5:00 – 6:15 pm)
  • Understanding Hyper-V Replica: Performance, Networking and Automation - Hyper-V Replica has seen a lot of positive press and some early customer adoption case studies have been published. The level of interest from customers and the sophistication in the types of questions indicates that the usage is moving from "testing" to "deploy" and we are seeing the interest in deploying it for site-site DR as well as some hosting service providers using it to build their DR-As-A-Service offering. This session covers the types of deployment considerations such as performance, scale, networking when deploying Hyper-V Replica for Disaster Recovery Scenarios. We also demonstrate how an automated solution for disaster recovery can be developed with Hyper-V Replica and Microsoft System Center - Orchestrator. (Breakout Session, June 5, 1:30 – 2:45 pm CT)

Hands on Labs

  • Implementing Storage Pools and Storage Spaces - In this lab, you work with the new storage spaces technology in Windows Server 2012. You first create new storage pools and virtual disks, and then work with those virtual disks in both Server Manager and Control Panel.  (Hands on Lab)
  • Creating a Resilient Network Infrastructure with Windows Server 2012 - You are updating your network implementation for core Windows servers. As a standard practice you want to have redundancy in DHCP so you implement DHCP Failover. You then configure IPAM to track IP address allocation of your DHCP servers. Next you implement DNS Sec for DNS resolution. Finally you configure all servers to have at least a two NIC teams to ensure failover in the event of a switch failure. Featured: 1. Deploy DHCP Failover, 2. Deploy IPAM, and create a new DHCP Scope with IPAM, 3. Implement DNSSec, 4. Validate DNS traffic is encrypted, and 5. Validate that single DCHP failover does not affect address acquisition. (Hands on Lab)