Microsoft Ushers in the 'Era of the Cloud OS'

Updated: June 11, 2012

Microsoft Ushers in the 'Era of the Cloud OS'

Today at the 20th annual TechEd North America conference, Microsoft Server and Tools Business President Satya Nadella welcomed a sold-out crowd of more than 10,000 to the era of the cloud operating system (OS) for infrastructure. Nadella described how the cloud OS drives both the modern datacenter and enables the development and management of modern applications, demonstrating how customers can benefit from this transformation with agility, focus and lower costs. He also announced updates to the company’s developer tools and availability of the next release of Windows Intune, the company’s cloud-based solution for PC and mobile device management and security.

Built on decades of experience gleaned from running massive datacenters at scale, Windows Server 2012 is the cloud-optimized server OS for customers of all sizes, and Windows Azure, updated with new services and features, delivers both infrastructure-as-a-service and platform-as-a-service capabilities. Built to complement each other with consistent development, management and identity, they make it easier to create, migrate, deploy and manage applications across public, private and hybrid clouds.

“The operating system does two things: it looks after the hardware, and it provides a platform for applications. The modern datacenter and modern apps put more pressure than ever on infrastructure to become truly cloud-optimized, and that’s where Microsoft builds on our legacy with the OS to help our customers,” Nadella said. “Microsoft is your partner in the transformation of IT because only Microsoft offers the modern, yet familiar, platform that enables you to connect with the cloud on your terms.”

Connecting With the Cloud

Every customer’s path to the cloud will be unique, which is why Microsoft Corp. is optimizing its technologies and tools so customers can easily connect to public, private or hybrid clouds when they are ready. Customers, such as Aflac Inc., ING Direct and Tribune Co., are already working with Microsoft to expand their datacenters into the cloud to scale on demand and help reduce infrastructure costs.

“Delivering content to thousands of users across multiple devices and platforms requires a level of infrastructure that’s easier to manage and more affordable with the cloud,” said Denise Schuster, senior vice president of Digital Innovations for Tribune Company. “We are currently using various methods to deliver content via cloud services, and we’re moving our digital content to Windows Azure to help us find new ways to better deliver a targeted, more personalized experience for our customer base.”

To ease customers’ transitions to the cloud, Microsoft underscored the release candidate of Windows Server 2012, recent updates to Windows Azure and the release of Windows Intune. Together, these new releases make it even easier for customers to leverage one modern operating system across public, private and hybrid clouds and manage a multitude of devices connected to those clouds.

  • Windows Server 2012 Release Candidate (RC). Released May 31, 2012, the Windows Server 2012 RC is available for customers to download and evaluate today. Advancements in storage, networking and scalability have been drawn from Microsoft’s experience running public cloud services.
  • Windows Azure. Windows Azure is newly updated with preview support for Virtual Machine and Virtual Network, support for Windows and Linux images, and additional support for Java and Python.
  • Windows Intune. The next release of Windows Intune includes expanded management and security benefits through mobile device management and adds people-centric management capabilities and upgrade rights to the latest version of Windows.

Enabling Developers With Cloud Tools

To streamline and accelerate application development and deployment, Microsoft Team Foundation Service, an application lifecycle management tool hosted on Windows Azure, is now even easier for teams to integrate into their development process. Team Foundation Service features collaboration tools, a code repository, and powerful reporting and traceability tools to help teams more effectively manage software development.

To help developers and IT professionals build immersive experiences that scale across devices and the cloud, the company announced that Microsoft LightSwitch, an easy-to-use development tool for quickly building applications, will now render HTML5. Integrating HTML5 into LightSwitch will enable developers using the tool to target any device or platform supporting HTML5.

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