July 12th, 2012 News Thursday: Windows Server 2012 Essentials Beta Released, Partner News from WPC, and more Server and Tools News…

by STB Blogger

Download the Beta Release of Windows Server 2012 Essentials Today!
Last week, Microsoft disclosed the new Windows Server 2012 licensing model and outlined the future of Small Business Server. This week, Microsoft has made the Windows Server 2012 Essentials beta release available for download and evaluation. The successor to Windows Small Business Server, Windows Server 2012 Essentials beta offers customers a flexible, affordable and easy-to-use server solution designed and priced for small businesses with up to 25 uses and 50 devices. Developed based on feedback from customers and partners, this release offers several key benefits including:

  • A simplified first-server product line-up, making it easier for customers and partners to design and deploy solutions based on their unique business needs.
  • Flexibility to choose whether to host applications and services on-premise or in the cloud.
  • Inclusion of several key Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8 features, providing small and medium sized businesses increased functionality at an affordable price.
  • Expanded support for devices, allowing customers to access information and manage their servers from a wide range of devices.

For more information on this release, check out this blog from Joe Nalewabau, Group Program Manager, Windows Server Essentials.

Microsoft Partners Highlight New Solutions at the Worldwide Partner Conference
This week at the Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), Microsoft highlighted new ways that partners can benefit in the era of the cloud OS. In support of the event, several key Microsoft partners showcased how they are using Microsoft technologies to deliver value to customers. Partner news included:

Check out the Microsoft Cloud Virtual Pressroom for more information on the partner news coming out of WPC.

Microsoft Translator Hub – Commercial Availability
In efforts to bring better and specialized translation quality to companies, organizations and enterprises, Microsoft announced the commercial availability of the Microsoft Translator Hub at this week’s Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference. The Microsoft Translator Hub is a translation portal that works with the Microsoft Translator web service and empowers partners to build, train, and deploy customized automatic language translation systems.
Powered by Windows Azure, Microsoft Translator Hub is an extension of the Microsoft Translator platform and service. You can find more information about Microsoft Translator Hub on the Microsoft Translator web site.

Windows Azure Challenge Winners Announced at Imagine Cup Finals
Winners of the Microsoft Imagine Cup Finals, which took place in Sydney Australia this year, were announced on Tuesday, July 10th.  This marked the event’s 10th year bringing together students from around the world to step up to the challenge of leading global change, using technology to help solve some of the world’s most challenging issues.  This year just under half of the student projects (45%) harnessed the power of the cloud and used Windows Azure in their technology prototypes.  Additionally, there was a specific Windows Azure Challenge within the competition, and this year’s winner was Team Virtual Dreams Azure from Brazil.  The team was devised of two brothers, Roberto and Eduardo Sonnino who developed a prototype called Eureka that enables teachers to turn lesson plans into interactive content for students’ phones, PCs and tablets.