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Windows Server 2008 R2 (Windows Server 7) offers additional opportunities for IT Pros and Hardware vendors

Bill Laing, of the Windows Server and Solutions Division, said that the update version of the Windows Server operating system combines low-cost virtualization, innovative power-saving capabilities, greater scalability and a streamlined Web platform.

PressPass asked Laing to elaborate on some of the improvements incorporated into Windows Server 2008 R2 (previously code-named “Windows Server 7”) and the customer reaction to the current Windows Server operating system.

PressPass: How does Windows Server 2008 R2 differ from the previous version? What are the most notable new features?

Laing: From a virtualization standpoint, we’re building on our state-of-the-art virtualization technology with a newer version of our Hyper-V hypervisor technology as well as some new features that customers have been asking us for, such as Live Migration. This feature, which is included with Windows Server 2008 R2 at no additional charge, lets you move a running workload from one machine to another in milliseconds, with no loss of performance from the user’s point of view.

On the management front, Windows Server 2008 R2 will be a foundation for datacenter automation. We are making multiple improvements that give customers the reins to truly manage their servers the way they desire, whether that is locally or remotely, via a graphical user interface (GUI) or from the command line via Windows PowerShell. We are also making improvements to help customers reduce and better manage their datacenter power consumption. Windows Server 2008 R2 can automatically turn processor cores on and off based on the workload of the system, or reduce the power consumption by adjusting processor speed.

Another area of innovation in Windows Server 2008 R2 is the ability to more easily administer and support Web applications on a streamlined Web platform. We’ve integrated Internet Information Services 7.0 (IIS) manager extensions to make it simpler to administer local and remote Web servers, and added support for ASP.NET and PHP to the Server Core.

And finally, we continue to invest in scalability. In Windows Server 2008 R2, we have built in support for up to 256 logical processors, which will allow our customers to more fully exploit today’s powerful CPUs, deploying only the features they choose and scaling those solutions to meet their organization’s needs.

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