Laing assigned engineers not to develop specific technologies, but rather to solve common problems that may cover a range of technologies, such as moving virtual machines from server to server without any downtime. "We tied all the pieces together, so we would have a more consistent release," he said.
The new release also benefits from Microsoft's work building out its own Azure cloud service, he explained. Many technologies developed for the server were tested in the cloud, and many technologies developed for Azure were then imported back to the server.
"Historically, there has been a separation between people who developed applications and the people who operated in the data center," he said. "We tried to keep a tight feedback [loop] between the two, to share the technology."