The virtualized desktop from Windows Server 2008 R2

Microsoft engineers are pounding the streets giving briefings to channel partners about Release 2 of

Windows Server 2008, and with those briefings come more details on what R2 will be like. Last week we reported on how R2, slated for release sometime in 2010, will integrate secure wireless networking to potentially eliminate the need for VPNs. We also discussed the starring role Terminal Services will play as a desktop virtualization component. (Terminal Services was renamed today as Remote Desktop Services, Microsoft says.) Microsoft worked closely with Citrix, Hewlett-Packard and others on improved support for desktop virtualization in R2, ChannelWeb says.

But here's the new scoop ... the improvements in Server 2008 R2 will tightly link desktop Windows (particularly Windows 7, but Microsoft is also promising integration with Vista and XP) with Hyper-V, Live Migration, System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 and Vista Enterprise VECD licensing. It won't just be about the technology. While Microsoft is trying to create a technically better method for desktop virtualization than what Windows Server currently supports with the Terminal Services, licensing will also be key. A heads-to-toe Microsoft shop may not have to worry about licensing violations if using a virtualization desktop OS with Windows Server 2008.

Could licensing be the key to driving IT customers back into the waiting arms of Microsoft, and away from Linux and Mac suitors? Maybe. If the technology works well, is easy to manage and runs on inexpensive hardware, without the multiple dedicated server configurations that Microsoft is so fond of requiring. That's a lot of "ifs."

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Also see:

10 questions for Microsoft's Windows Server 2008 guy, Jason Hermitage17 job-hunting resources for Windows prosUnder the hood of Hyper-V (master list of links)Glenn Weadock on Windows Server 2008Library of Windows management tools from A Better Windows Worldall Microsoft Subnet Microsoft newsletter. (Click on News/Microsoft News Alert.)

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