Tech Ed 2012: Windows Server 2012 unveiled

Microsoft lifts the covers on its latest server operating system at Tech Ed 2012 conference

Developers are promised an open Web and application development environment in the Windows Server 2012 operating system (OS), said Microsoft executives.

Speaking at Tech Ed 2012 on the Gold Coast, Windows server and cloud US principal program manager, Jeff Woolsey, told delegates that the new server OS would deliver users what they had been asking for — namely an open development environment and continuous uptime.

According to Woolsey, Windows Server 2012 is the first “genuine cloud OS”.

“When we think about the cloud OS and modern apps, we think about cloud scale. One of the biggest challenges to developing a new application, whether it’s internally or public facing, is the amount of hardware I need,” he said.

Woolsey said this problem was solved through Server 2012 which provides scalability and one consistent platform across private, hosted and public cloud environments.

“For example, [developer software] Visual Studio in the .Net framework can be run on premise or with a [cloud] service provider.

“We want to use Windows Server 2012 as the way to bring together your structured and unstructured data. It’s about taking these huge amounts of data and mining it in ways that are new and interesting.”

Turning to cloud security, he said the company had listened to information security analysts and devised a way to protect file server information with Dynamic Access Control which controls who can access information on the servers.

“Security analysts told us that file servers are the biggest security challenge. People tend to set up file servers and put all sorts of very important data in there but forget about the servers,” he said.

“IT contractors come through the business and suddenly have access to this data [on the servers] that they shouldn’t. With Dynamic Access Control, we’re providing policy and governance to help protect data."

For example, Woolsey said that if an Excel spreadsheet is loaded on to a file server, the file server will examine the spreadsheet.

“If it finds tax ID information or social security card information, it can automatically encrypt the data. This is a way to help system administrators protect company data,” he said.

Hamish Barwick attended the Tech Ed 2012 conference on the Gold Coast as a guest of Microsoft.

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU, or take part in the Computerworld conversation on LinkedIn: Computerworld Australia

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