Yesterday was a big day for Microsoft. The company announced the update and release of both Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 and Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 (their free standalone hypervisor platform) to manufacturing. The R2 update contains major functionality improvements to both products.
Today, consumers find themselves one step closer to getting their hands on a Released to Manufacturing (RTM) version of the upgraded OS and hypervisor. While the RTM version is final code, you might want to hold off celebrating or popping open that bottle of champagne just yet. These R2 releases are currently only available for partners to download and start testing with their various hardware platforms.
[ Keep up with the latest virtualization news with InfoWorld's virtualization newsletter and visit the InfoWorld Virtualization Topic Center for news, blogs, essentials, and information about InfoWorld virtualization events. ]
According to Crissy House, a product manager for Microsoft's Windows Server marketing group, OEMs will start to receive Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM on July 29. Independent software vendor (ISV) and independent hardware vendor (IHV) partners will be able to download the product from MSDN starting on August 14. Microsoft Partner Program Gold/Certified members will be able to download it through the Microsoft Partner Program (MPP) portal on August 19. Microsoft Action Pack subscribers will be able to download it starting August 23. Volume License customers with an existing Software Assurance (SA) license will be able to get it on August 19 via the Volume License Service Center (VLSC). And IT professionals with TechNet subscriptions or developers with MSDN subscriptions will start having access to download the product on August 14.
And then if you are like me and don't have any of those fancy titles or access to any of those special Microsoft acronym programs, you can grab a 180-day evaluation version on August 20 or wait to purchase it from the retail channel starting September 14.
Wow! I'm glad Crissy House knows what's going on. That's a lot of different dates and programs that can cause a bit of confusion for folks.
So hopefully you now have an idea as to when you can get your hands on this thing. And now you're asking, what's going on with this new Hyper-V R2? Like I said earlier, there are quite a few improvements in this release. Let's dig into a few of them.