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Windows 8 Consumer Preview is Here! Now What? Vol 14-4 | March, 2012
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February 29th was an important date in the evolution of Windows. It was the day of the release of the Windows 8 Consumer Preview and Windows Server “8” beta . A thought struck me as soon as the download completed. Now What? Sure I’m going to find a machine to install each of them on but then what else can I do to understand how both of these will impact our organizations?

Excited About The Future!

We’re all consumers so the excitement level around the Windows 8 Consumer Preview is up there! Once you download it, you should check out the resources on the Windows 8 Consumer Preview site . Looking further down the road to when you will be asked to provide guidance to your organization on adopting Windows 8 and deploying it in your environments, check out the Springboard Series content on Windows 8 including the Windows 8 Consumer Preview Product Guide . Start there to help make your time with Windows 8 Consumer Preview more effective.

On the server side, Windows Server “8” beta has a lot to offer!! I have been in this industry a very long time (remember, I have NO hair left on my head !), and I can honestly say that Windows Server “8” is the most exciting release of a server operating system since Windows NT 3.1!!! The most exciting new features for me are the shared-nothing Live Migration, Storage Live Migration, new storage options, NIC teaming in the OS, extensible virtual networking and more — all dealing with Private Cloud & Virtualization! We will be covering each of these and more in the next few weeks on the Canadian IT Pro blog .

Prepare for The Future Today

Now is the time to evaluate how Windows 8 will work with your existing applications and infrastructure. The best way to get ready for Windows 8 is to ensure your environment is on Windows 7 today and not running Windows XP or earlier. Support for Windows 2000 has already ended and Windows XP extended support will end on April 8, 2014 — coming up faster than you think! A great resource to help you plan, deploy and manage Windows 7 , Office 2010 as well as learn how to ensure your in-house applications are ready is the Springboard site on TechNet .

Also, don’t wait until Windows Server “8” ships to start to taking advantage of Hyper-V and our Private Cloud offerings. Implement Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and take advantage of System Center 2012 to deploy, monitor, and manage your Private Cloud infrastructure right from the bare metal! The skills you learn today will help you with Windows 8 in the future.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter and regularly visit the Canadian IT Pro Blog to hear about the latest updates on these topics. EXCITING TIMES!!

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