Windows Server 2012

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(Last Updated On: February 25, 2013)

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Windows Server 2012, codenamed “Windows Server 8”,[2] is the sixth release of Windows Server. It is the server version of Windows 8 and succeeds Windows Server 2008 R2. Two pre-release versions, a developer preview and a beta version, were released during development. The software was generally available to customers starting on September 4, 2012.[3]

Unlike its predecessor, Windows Server 2012 has no support for Itanium-based computers,[4] and has four editions. Various features were added or improved over Windows Server 2008 R2, such as an updated version of Hyper-V, an IP address management role, a new version of Windows Task Manager, and ReFS, a new file system. Although it has a Metro user interface (which has led to a mixed reception for Windows 8), the operating system has generally received positive reviews for these features.

Windows Server 2012, codenamed “Windows Server 8”,[2] is the sixth release of Windows Server family of operating systems developed concurrently with Windows 8.[5][6] It was not until 17 April 2012 that the company announced that the final product name would be “Windows Server 2012”.[2]

Microsoft introduced Windows Server 2012 and its developer preview in the BUILD 2011 conference on 9 September 2011.[7] However, unlike Windows 8, the developer preview of Windows Server 2012 was only made available to MSDN subscribers.[8] It included a graphical user interface (GUI) based on Metro design language and a new Server Manager, a graphical application used for server management.[9] On 16 February 2012, Microsoft released an update for developer preview build that extended its expiry date from 8 April 2012 to 15 January 2013.[10]

Before Windows Server 2012 was finalized, two test builds were made public. A public beta version of Windows Server 2012 was released along with the Windows 8 Consumer Preview on 29 February 2012.[5] The release candidate of Windows Server 2012 was released on 31 May 2012, along with the Windows 8 Release Preview.[6]

The product was released to manufacturing on 1 August 2012 and became generally available on 4 September 2012.[3] However, not all editions of Windows Server 2012 were released at the same time. Windows Server 2012 Essentials was released to manufacturing on 9 October 2012[11] and was made generally available on 5 November 2012.[12] As of 23 September 2012, all students subscribed to DreamSpark program can download Windows Server 2012 Standard or Datacenter free of charge.[13]

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