Microsoft has given developers the final pieces of code for Windows Server 2008 R2, having already released the product to manufacturing at the end of July along with Windows 7.
The company posted the final code to MSDN and TechNet subscribers at around 6pm BST yesterday, and general availability is slated for 22 October.
Despite the name, Windows Server 2008 R2 could be as significant a server release as Windows 7 is set to be for the desktop, according to a recent five star review by V3.co.uk which pointed to major improvements in scalability and performance, and numerous new features.
Key among these are enhancements in the area of virtualisation. The new product, which was originally titled Windows 7 Server, ships with the Hyper-V 2.0 hypervisor, which enables virtual machines to be migrated between host servers while still running. This could be useful for load balancing or to allow server maintenance.
Microsoft's Hyper-V also enables users to boot physical as well as virtual machines from VHD images, and add and remove storage on running virtual machines.
Server 2008 supports up to 64 logical processors per system in Hyper-V and up to 384 virtual machines running concurrently per host system, primarily for future scalability.
There are also improvements on the green IT side with a new Core Parking feature designed to put a host's processors to 'sleep' when they are not individually being used.
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