In technical circles, excitement is mounting over the impending release of Microsoft’s next big OS, Windows 8. Many techies and businesses are eager to get their hands on the new new OS and hopefully give their organization a leg up over their competition. Microsoft, on the other hand is eager to get businesses to upgrade and has made two announcements regarding the cost of upgrading the OS, and upgrading your servers.
Microsoft has finally announced the cost to upgrade from previous versions of the Windows OS - XP and Windows 7 - and the cost of Windows server 2012.
Upgrade to Windows 8 Microsoft has announced that systems running Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7 will be able to upgrade to Windows 8 for as low as USD $40. Users will be able to download the upgrade from the Microsoft store at a cost of USD $40, until January 31 2013. The upgrade will also be available on DVD in retail stores at a cost of USD $69.99.
Microsoft also announced that users currently using personal versions of Windows 7 - Starter through Home Premium - will be able to upgrade to Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro and keep their personal settings, files and applications. XP and Vista users can upgrade to both versions of Windows 8, but only personal files will be migrated over. If your business currently uses Windows 7 Professional or Enterprise, you can upgrade to Windows 8 Enterprise, and keep all files, applications and settings.
There are a few things to be aware of with the upgrade. The first is that users who want to upgrade from different architecture versions - 32 bit to 64 bit - will be able to do so, however, none of their files, applications or settings will remain. The second is, if you buy a copy of Windows 7 between June 2, 2012 and July 31, 2012, you can purchase Windows 8 Pro for USD $15.99.
Windows Server 2012 Anytime Microsoft releases a new operating system, they also release a version for servers that’s compatible with the new OS. Windows Server 2012, unofficially dubbed Windows Server 8, is the new server OS, and will be available in four versions.
- Datacenter. This version is aimed at companies that operate in “highly virtualized environments and hybrid cloud environments”. It can support an unlimited number of virtual instances and will cost USD $4,809.
- Standard. This version is exactly the same as the Datacenter version, only it’s for companies with light or no virtualization and will cost USD $882.
- Essentials. Essentials is for small business environments, supports up to 25 users, comes preconfigured to connect to cloud based services and will cost $425 USD.
- Foundation. Foundation is the most general version of Windows Server 2012, and will come preinstalled in general servers. At this time, it will only be available for server manufacturers, with no cost being announced.