Windows Server 2012 now available in Malaysia
Boasts 107 new features and a simplified purchase path for organizations
MICROSOFT Malaysia has announced the general availability of Windows Server 2012, the latest version of its server operating system (OS) and successor to Windows Server 2008.
The company claims it currently holds over 70% market share of the server segment in the country and two-thirds of the market in Asia Pacific.
Danny Ong (pic), chief marketing and operations officer at Microsoft Malaysia, said that for Server 2012, the company applied its experience in operating global data centers that rely on hundreds of thousands of servers to deliver more than 200 cloud services.
“Cloud computing is driving a massive transformation in the information technology (IT) industry, giving customers the opportunity to move faster, innovate for their businesses with more focus, and to reduce costs,” he said.
Ong said that Microsoft’s legacy in operating systems, applications and cloud services positions the company to deliver the 'Cloud OS' -- based on Windows Server and Windows Azure -- that can help customers build a data center without boundaries.
“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,” he added.
The new server OS claims to offer significant new advancements in virtualization, storage, networking and automation, with a total of 107 new features.
Eric Liew, Microsoft Malaysia product marketing manager, Core Infrastructure, said the challenges arising from a changing business environment have opened up the need for new IT.
“It’s now all about apps, and not the traditional variants but connected apps that incorporate social elements. The device explosion is also another trend that many organizations have found a headache to cater for,” he said.
Liew also said that storage remains a consistent issue with flexible networking and connectivity capabilities becoming crucial.
“These are new needs that are not addressed by older servers. With Server 2012, we have sought to distil our experience in cloud services and package it into one consistent platform for all,” he added.
In a blog post
,Forrester’s vice president and principal analyst for infrastructure and operations
Richard Fichera wrote: “There is no doubt that this is the most significant jump in operating system capabilities since Microsoft first introduced Windows as a server operating system.”
He also added that "any preconceived notions about Microsoft versus VMware for the virtualization layer need to be re-examined."
Feature highlights include Storage Spaces, a built in storage subsystem which uses thin provisioning, and which can dynamically add storage to an existing RAID, regardless of size and type.
Another Server 2012 feature highlighted by Liew (pic) is Microsoft's take on Data Deduplication, which is designed for industry standard hardware and uses variable-chunking and compression. It can be applied to primary data and is intelligent enough to recognize duplicates of files and preserve only a single copy.
Unilever, one of the world’s largest consumer goods company, has plans to double in size within the next 10 years but did not want IT costs to double as well.
To ensure that its IT organization could support this growth, thew company switched from VMware to Hyper-V technology in Windows Server 2008 R2 to virtualize its server holdings. It then used Hyper-V and Microsoft System Center 2012 to build a private cloud environment.
“Windows Server 2012 is the biggest change yet since Windows Server 2003 and we’re very excited about it. With a private cloud infrastructure, we can provide IT at a lower cost and react faster, which helps the business react faster,” said Unilever's director of Enterprise Computing, Mike Royle.
According to Microsoft, a survey of 70 early adopter customers from across the globe revealed that they expect, on average, 52% reduction in downtime, 41% reduction in workload deployment time, and 15 hours of productivity time saved per year, per employee.
In addition, 91% of the companies surveyed expect a reduction in server administration labor, and 88% expect reduction in network administration labor.
Calling it the “swiss army knife” of servers, Liew said that with Server 2012 offering expanded capabilities, IT job functions can be collapsed within organizations, freeing up the manpower bandwidth for IT departments to focus on innovation.
He also added that there is also a limit to the cost savings that virtualization can offer, as it can sometimes increase with the added burden of managing not just the physical servers but the virtual ones as well.
“Two new areas companies will look at to aid in cost cutting will be in automation and management tools,” Liew said.
For organizations looking to upgrade or migrate to Server 2012, the product line-up has been streamlined and simplified with two main offerings: The Datacenter edition for highly-virtualized private cloud environments, and the Standard edition for non-virtualized or lightly virtualized environments.
The two editions are differentiated only by virtualization rights, two virtual instances for the Standard edition and unlimited virtual instances for the Datacenter edition.
For more information about Windows Server 2012, click here.
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