Windows Server 2008, which was released earlier this month, was officially launched today. Windows Server 2008 brings many eagerly anticipated admin-pleasing features such as a stripped-down mode called "Server Core" that does away with many unnecessary features that are normally installed, and a new virtualization platform--"Hyper-V"--that should increase Microsoft's foothold in this increasingly important market sector. Windows Server 2008 wasn't the only product to be launched today either; Visual Studio 2008 also saw its official launch, even though it has been finished and available since November, and some fanfare was made about SQL Server 2008, though that won't be finished until later in the year.
Microsoft has high expectations for Windows Server 2008. As well as wanting it to be successful in its own right, Microsoft is hoping that Windows Server 2008 in the server room will translate into Windows Vista on the desktop. Both operating systems are built from the same codebase, and there are features in Vista that only come into play when used in conjunction with Windows Server 2008. If administrators can trust the code that makes up Server 2008, then by extension they should trust Vista, and the reluctance to use it should begin to diminish--that's Microsoft's hope.
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Read about how Windows Server Pro makes XP a "second class citizen."