Windows Server 2012 R2 VL Standard ESD

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Windows Server 2012 R2 VL Standard ESD is the fifth version of the Windows Server operating system by Microsoft, as part of the Windows NT family of operating systems. It is the server version of Windows based on Windows 8 and succeeds Windows 7-based Windows Server 2008 R2, released two years prior. Two pre-release versions, a developer preview and a beta version, were released during development. The software was generally available to customers starting on September 4, 2012, by Microsoft. A successor was released on October 18, 2013, entitled Windows Server 2012 R2. Microsoft will end its extended support for Windows Server 2012 on October 10, 2023.

Unlike its predecessor, Windows Server 2012 has no support for Itanium-based computers,[5] and has four editions. Various features were added or improved over Windows Server 2008 R2 (with many placing an emphasis on cloud computing), such as an updated version of Hyper-V, an IP address management role, a new version of Windows Task Manager, and ReFS, a new file system. Windows Server 2012 received generally good reviews in spite of having included the same controversial Metro-based user interface seen in Windows 8, which includes the Charms Bar for quick access to settings in the desktop environment.

History

Windows Server 2012, codenamed “Windows Server 8”,[6] is the fifth release of Windows Server family of operating systems developed concurrently with Windows 8.[7][8] It was not until April 17, 2012 that the company announced that the final product name would be “Windows Server 2012”.[6]

Microsoft introduced Windows Server 2012 and its developer preview in the BUILD 2011 conference on September 9, 2011.[9] However, unlike Windows 8, the developer preview of Windows Server 2012 was only made available to MSDN subscribers.[10] It included a graphical user interface (GUI) based on Metro design language and a new Server Manager, a graphical application used for server management.[11] On February 16, 2012, Microsoft released an update for developer preview build that extended its expiry date from April 8, 2012 to January 15, 2013.[12]

Before Windows Server 2012 was finalized, two test builds were made public. A public beta version of Windows Server 2012 was released along with the Windows 8 Consumer Preview on February 29, 2012.[7] The release candidate of Windows Server 2012 was released on May 31, 2012, along with the Windows 8 Release Preview.[8]

The product was released to manufacturing on August 1, 2012 (along with Windows 8) and became generally available on September 4, that year.[4] However, not all editions of Windows Server 2012 were released at the same time. Windows Server 2012 Essentials was released to manufacturing on October 9, 2012[13] and was made generally available on November 1, 2012.[14] As of September 23, 2012, all students subscribed to DreamSpark program can download Windows Server 2012 Standard or Datacenter free of charge.[15]

Windows Server 2012 is based on Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 8 and requires x86-64 CPUs (64-bit), while Windows Server 2008 worked on the older IA-32 (32-bit) architecture as well. Coupled with fundamental changes in the structure of the client backups and the shared folders, there is no clear method for migrating from the previous version to Windows Server 2012.

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