Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Drives Cloud OS
After much waiting, the latest version of Microsoft Windows Server is finally getting out into the hands of partners and customers. According to the Redmond, Wash.-based company, Windows Server 2012 will serve as a cornerstone for Microsoft’s Cloud OS.
Although competitors are likely to take issue with it, Microsoft is claiming that Windows Server 2012 is the first cloud operating system. Even if that’s little more than marketing noise, kudos to Microsoft for stepping up its cloud strategy with the focus on cloud in this latest release.
Satya Nadella, Microsoft Server and tools business president, had the honor of launching the product, which has not had a new version in almost three years with Windows Server 2008 R2. According to Nadella, Windows Server 2012 will be the cornerstone of Cloud OS, which Microsoft intends to use as a consistent platform across private, hosted and public clouds.
“The operating system has always been the heartbeat of IT and is now undergoing a renaissance in the new world of continuous cloud services, connected devices and big data,” Nadella said in a prepared statement. “Microsoft’s unique legacy in the most widely used operating systems, applications and cloud services positions us to deliver the Cloud OS, based on Windows Server and Windows Azure, helping customers achieve a data center without boundaries.”
Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT, noted that Microsoft’s big push with Windows Server 2012 is in the Enterprise edition, which supports unlimited virtual instances. That will make it attractive to large organizations that are planning for in-house private cloud deployments and to PaaS providers looking to develop public cloud offerings, he said. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t alternatives to consider.
“Technology and the marketplace have changed considerably since the last version of Windows Server was launched, and while Microsoft certainly has ambitious plans around cloud computing, the company’s solutions play only minor (if any) roles among cloud leaders like Google, Amazon, Facebook, etc.,” King told Talkin’ Cloud. “Plus, though Microsoft’s free Hyper-V technology (a critical part of its cloud strategy) has been gathering momentum, it has been largely unable to dislodge VMware from medium to large enterprise customers.”
For one of the big kids on the block, Microsoft will still have its challenges in the cloud space, even as it ramps up Windows Server 2012 and Cloud OS.
Still, Microsoft has its eyes set on the prize and has tailored Windows Server 2012 features and functionality around the cloud and around the “modern data center.”