|By Maureen O'Gara||
|September 7, 2012 11:00 AM EDT||
Microsoft said it would push Windows Server 2012 out the door in early September and it did on Tuesday, after a year of public test builds. It positioned it as the "cornerstone" of its cloud strategy, its "Cloud OS" for private and hosted clouds and a building block for Windows Azure.
It said "the Cloud OS does what operating systems have always done: manage hardware and provide a platform for applications. But it also expands to include services and technologies that have not previously been considered part of an operating system."
In the case of Windows Server, the 2012 model works independently and connects to 200 or so online services available through Azure, stuff like bursting or analytics.
Microsoft says the widgetry is "built from the cloud up."
Satya Nadella, president of Microsoft's Server and Tools Business, blogged that the company focused on four key things in building the Cloud OS:
"First is the transformation of the data center. We want to bring together all of the resources provided by a traditional data center - storage, networking and computing - into one platform that scales elastically with an organization's needs.
"Second is offering the APIs and runtimes to enable developers to create modern applications - for mobile, social and Big Data. A third important aspect is ensuring personalized services and experiences, so that any user on any device can access all of their data and applications.
"Lastly, data of any size or type, stored anywhere and processed in any style must be a first-class citizen of the Cloud OS."
Since Azure and Windows Server share basic technology, Microsoft gets to try out a new buzzword out of the RAS school - namely consistency - as in "only Microsoft is able to offer the consistent platform that the cloud demands" and customers can "use common virtualization, application development, systems management, data and identity frameworks across all of their clouds."
Nadella explained: "As companies find more and more ways to take advantage of cloud benefits, this consistency will be required in how the cloud behaves, whether on-premise or through service providers. To be clear, that consistency is not a statement about packaging or offers, but rather about the underlying technology designs in which virtuous cycles of development drive both Windows Server and Windows Azure and the key technologies that span both. We've built the Cloud OS components in concert - not acquired them as piece parts - which provides a further level of consistency and cohesion across deployment scenarios."
Server 2012 has its own gussied-up virtualization, networking, storage, automation and end-user access. CPU, storage and networking systems are virtualized and cloud-enabled. It's also supposed to support the exponential growth of data and devices.
It can handle clustered file servers of 64 nodes, up from 16, with larger storage to accommodate mushrooming corporate data and storage racks that offer continuous availability not just high availability.
The server's updates include a new version of Microsoft's Hyper-V hypervisor - apparently a hot number judging from the early reviews - that adds network virtualization capabilities so multiple network configurations can co-exist on the same physical LAN, an essential foundation of multi-tenant data centers.
Microsoft says it will support any application on any cloud and that other people's VMs will break when they change their IP address. With Windows Server 2012 and its network virtualization, the IP address moves around with the VM.
A new ZFS-like Resilient File System (ReFS) is supposed to introduce greater reliability features such as an allocation-on-write policy for metadata to reduce the threat of data being corrupted.
Windows Server 2012 is supposed to leapfrog Microsoft over VMware. It can reportedly handle bigger workloads per server than VMware, whose customers are being wooed to swap out its rival widgetry.
Microsoft can dangle cheaper prices in front of them. For instance, the deduplication features in Server 2012 can supposedly save users 40% or 50% on storage. VMware admitted last week at VMworld that it can't compete with Microsoft on price.
There are four editions of Windows Server 2012 starting at $425 and running up to $4,800, both for up to two processors.
The high-end Datacenter edition supports unlimited virtualization rights for cloud environments while the $880 Standard edition is for small virtualized environments and only supports two Windows Server VMs per license.
The Essentials edition, which replaces the old Small Business Server (SBS) and has a 25-user limit, will cost $425 a server. VARs and solution providers might use it to chase SMB opportunities. It's still in the release candidate stage.
Windows Server 2012 Foundation is a general-purpose server platform with no virtualization and only comes pre-installed on OEM server hardware.
The operating system is available for download and evaluation.
To make everything really work a user needs Microsoft's System Center 2012 management platform. It can do the bare-metal provisioning, couple servers into resource pools to build a private cloud and automate the resources that deliver services from the cloud.
Apple surprised people when it testified at its patent infringement suit against Samsung last month that it didn't divine its widgets out of thin air. Instead it talked to people. According to ZDnet that's how Microsoft developed its server out of a combined server and cloud unit, which explains its cloud proclivities and focus on automation.
There's also widgetry shared with the Windows 8 client operating system coming out the end of October: the kernel, interface, developer tools, frameworks and identity and commerce infrastructure.
Forrester Research figures spending on private clouds will top $20 billion next year. IDC estimates Microsoft had $5 billion in Windows Server sales in 2011. VMware had 58% of the hypervisor market last year to Microsoft's 26%. The race is on.
2015 predictions circa 1970: houses anticipate our needs and adapt, city infrastructure is citizen and situation aware, office buildings identify and preprocess you. Today smart buildings have no such collective conscience, no shared set of fundamental services to identify, predict and synchronize around us. LiveSpace and M2Mi are changing that. LiveSpace Smart Environment devices deliver over the M2Mi IoT Platform real time presence, awareness and intent analytics as a service to local connected devices. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Sarah Cooper, VP Business of Development at M2Mi, will d...
May. 29, 2015 04:27 PM EDT Reads: 460
The Industrial Internet revolution is now underway, enabled by connected machines and billions of devices that communicate and collaborate. The massive amounts of Big Data requiring real-time analysis is flooding legacy IT systems and giving way to cloud environments that can handle the unpredictable workloads. Yet many barriers remain until we can fully realize the opportunities and benefits from the convergence of machines and devices with Big Data and the cloud, including interoperability, data security and privacy.
May. 29, 2015 03:45 PM EDT Reads: 5,090
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In this session, James Kirkland, Red Hat's Chief Architect for the Internet of Things and Intelligent Systems, will describe how to revolutionize your architecture and...
May. 29, 2015 02:33 PM EDT Reads: 605
We’re entering a new era of computing technology that many are calling the Internet of Things (IoT). Machine to machine, machine to infrastructure, machine to environment, the Internet of Everything, the Internet of Intelligent Things, intelligent systems – call it what you want, but it’s happening, and its potential is huge. IoT is comprised of smart machines interacting and communicating with other machines, objects, environments and infrastructures. As a result, huge volumes of data are being generated, and that data is being processed into useful actions that can “command and control” thi...
May. 29, 2015 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,306
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, discussed single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example t...
May. 29, 2015 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 6,870
All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo, June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be
May. 29, 2015 01:15 PM EDT Reads: 3,066
SYS-CON Events announced today that MetraTech, now part of Ericsson, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Ericsson is the driving force behind the Networked Society- a world leader in communications infrastructure, software and services. Some 40% of the world’s mobile traffic runs through networks Ericsson has supplied, serving more than 2.5 billion subscribers.
May. 29, 2015 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,466
Scott Jenson leads a project called The Physical Web within the Chrome team at Google. Project members are working to take the scalability and openness of the web and use it to talk to the exponentially exploding range of smart devices. Nearly every company today working on the IoT comes up with the same basic solution: use my server and you'll be fine. But if we really believe there will be trillions of these devices, that just can't scale. We need a system that is open a scalable and by using the URL as a basic building block, we open this up and get the same resilience that the web enjoys.
May. 29, 2015 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 7,516
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC, and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will want to use their existing identities, but these will have credentials already that are (hopefully) i...
May. 29, 2015 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 4,772
Thanks to widespread Internet adoption and more than 10 billion connected devices around the world, companies became more excited than ever about the Internet of Things in 2014. Add in the hype around Google Glass and the Nest Thermostat, and nearly every business, including those from traditionally low-tech industries, wanted in. But despite the buzz, some very real business questions emerged – mainly, not if a device can be connected, or even when, but why? Why does connecting to the cloud create greater value for the user? Why do connected features improve the overall experience? And why do...
May. 29, 2015 12:42 PM EDT Reads: 791
SYS-CON Events announced today that O'Reilly Media has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. O'Reilly Media spreads the knowledge of innovators through its books, online services, magazines, and conferences. Since 1978, O'Reilly Media has been a chronicler and catalyst of cutting-edge development, homing in on the technology trends that really matter and spurring their adoption by amplifying "faint signals" from the alpha geeks who are creating the future. An active participa...
May. 29, 2015 12:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,339
SYS-CON Events announced today that BMC will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. BMC delivers software solutions that help IT transform digital enterprises for the ultimate competitive business advantage. BMC has worked with thousands of leading companies to create and deliver powerful IT management services. From mainframe to cloud to mobile, BMC pairs high-speed digital innovation with robust IT industrialization – allowing customers to provide amazing user experiences with optimized IT per...
May. 29, 2015 12:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,664
Imagine a world where targeting, attribution, and analytics are just as intrinsic to the physical world as they currently are to display advertising. Advances in technologies and changes in consumer behavior have opened the door to a whole new category of personalized marketing experience based on direct interactions with products. The products themselves now have a voice. What will they say? Who will control it? And what does it take for brands to win in this new world? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Zack Bennett, Vice President of Customer Success at EVRYTHNG, will answer these questions a...
May. 29, 2015 12:13 PM EDT Reads: 766
The 4th International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 17th International Cloud Expo - to be held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - announces that its Call for Papers is open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
May. 29, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,678
An entirely new security model is needed for the Internet of Things, or is it? Can we save some old and tested controls for this new and different environment? In his session at @ThingsExpo, New York's at the Javits Center, Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, reviewed hands-on lessons with IoT devices and reveal a new risk balance you might not expect. Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, has more than nineteen years' experience managing global security operations and assessments, including a decade of leading incident response and digital forensics. He is co-author of t...
May. 29, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 6,172
The Internet of Things is a misnomer. That implies that everything is on the Internet, and that simply should not be - especially for things that are blurring the line between medical devices that stimulate like a pacemaker and quantified self-sensors like a pedometer or pulse tracker. The mesh of things that we manage must be segmented into zones of trust for sensing data, transmitting data, receiving command and control administrative changes, and peer-to-peer mesh messaging. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ryan Bagnulo, Solution Architect / Software Engineer at SOA Software, focused on desi...
May. 29, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 4,476
The multi-trillion economic opportunity around the "Internet of Things" (IoT) is emerging as the hottest topic for investors in 2015. As we connect the physical world with information technology, data from actions, processes and the environment can increase sales, improve efficiencies, automate daily activities and minimize risk. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ed Maguire, Senior Analyst at CLSA Americas, will describe what is new and different about IoT, explore financial, technological and real-world impact across consumer and business use cases. Why now? Significant corporate and venture...
May. 29, 2015 10:50 AM EDT Reads: 855
Today’s enterprise is being driven by disruptive competitive and human capital requirements to provide enterprise application access through not only desktops, but also mobile devices. To retrofit existing programs across all these devices using traditional programming methods is very costly and time consuming – often prohibitively so. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO, President, and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., discussed how you can create applications that run on all mobile devices as well as laptops and desktops using a visual drag-and-drop application – and eForms-buildi...
May. 29, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 5,865
While great strides have been made relative to the video aspects of remote collaboration, audio technology has basically stagnated. Typically all audio is mixed to a single monaural stream and emanates from a single point, such as a speakerphone or a speaker associated with a video monitor. This leads to confusion and lack of understanding among participants especially regarding who is actually speaking. Spatial teleconferencing introduces the concept of acoustic spatial separation between conference participants in three dimensional space. This has been shown to significantly improve comprehe...
May. 29, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 3,696
There will be 150 billion connected devices by 2020. New digital businesses have already disrupted value chains across every industry. APIs are at the center of the digital business. You need to understand what assets you have that can be exposed digitally, what their digital value chain is, and how to create an effective business model around that value chain to compete in this economy. No enterprise can be complacent and not engage in the digital economy. Learn how to be the disruptor and not the disruptee.
May. 29, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,130