Microsoft Windows Server 2012 was such a game-changing operating system (OS) that Microsoft is continuing to invest in add-ons to this great OS to make it even better. Windows Server 2012 R2 will be released at the end of the year, but is available for preview now.

Windows Server 2012 R2 is a Microsoft “Generation-2 Virtual Machine (VM) “and provides users with enhancements to networking, storage, virtualisation, virtual desktops, data protection and a whole lot more.  R2 has enterprise-capacity scale and virtualisation utility that allows businesses to run and process huge amounts of data (“big data”) while simultaneously benefiting from ongoing recovery functions that protect against data loss under any circumstance.

With the Windows Server 2012 R2 users can access their data from anywhere, at any time, with enhanced protection to ensure data is retrieved and stored securely. Using R2 can also greatly lower a company’s IT storage expenses due to its large selection of storage options and virtual hard disk de-duplication.

According to Kurt Mackie, writer for Redmond Magazine, some of the best things about R2 are its: UEFI Security, SCSI Boot, Automatic Activation capabilities, its Copy-and- Paste function for VMs, Improvements to Live Migration, Shared VHDX (Hyper-V Virtual Hard Disk), the use of Live Export for Analysis, Guest Support for Linux, and Replica Improvements:

According to Ben Armstrong, a program manager on the Hyper-V team at Microsoft UEFI is advantageous, because of the “secure boot” protection it provides. This protects against malicious software being activated during a boot; and users can use the SCSI (small computer system interface) to boot from, which boots much faster (20% faster) and provides for faster installations (50% faster).  The new Hyper-V allows for automatic activation of VMs, as well as automation for other management tasks to increase a business’s operational efficiencies.

Armstrong also touted the fact that R2 supports live migrations and exporting of VMs for much greater IT flexibility, and without compromising data or security.  Hyper-V comes with a shared VHDX (virtual hard disk) to provide increased storage capabilities.  With the big data being used today this is a great feature.

With Live Export Analysis and its cloning capabilities, companies can be assured that their IT system can be maintained and applications repaired without any disturbances to their business operations. And with Linux Support capabilities, IT companies can now provide their clients increased support capabilities; according to Armstrong, “any enterprise backup solution that supports Hyper-V and you’ll get full Linux backup support.”  They can run Windows and Linux VMs side by side.  And with Replica Improvements a company’s data is now more secure than ever because replication of data is now much faster and can be sent from one VM to another, keeping data safe 24/7/365 under any situation.

Essentially what all this boils down to is that Microsoft’s new Hyper-V technology in the Windows 2012 Server R2 gives businesses better IT performance, security, storage capacity and cost efficiencies.  To learn more for yourself visit Microsoft’s website at download their preview at:

Do you have questions about Microsoft Windows Server and the benefits to your business?  Contact us today and book a no obligation review of your Windows Server environment.