Windows to a Mobile World: Mobile Features in the Upcoming Windows 8

The soon-to-be-released operating systems Windows 8 and Windows Server 8 promise users a variety of changes in functionality and appearance. Currently, consumer Windows operating systems command over 90% of the market and the server OS an estimated 40%. Assuming these percentages translate to the next Windows operating systems, many users and businesses can expect to be affected by the changes in the new versions.

Mobility will be the primary theme of Windows 8. This theme will take three main forms: 1) The Windows “Start screen” will resemble the Windows Phone interface. Also like a smartphone, Windows 8 will accept touchscreen input. 2) The same Windows 8 operating system that runs on a normal computer will be able to run on a tablet computer. 3) A feature called “Windows To Go” will allow users to transfer their version of Windows 8, with all their settings, data, and programs, to a bootable USB storage device. Users could then attach the device to any computer and load their particular version of Windows 8. Meanwhile, their personal data would remain securely on the device.

In previous blog posts we have discussed the increasing role in the business world of mobile devices and mobile IT. The mobile-centric features of Windows 8 will only accelerate this trend towards lightweight, on-the-go technologies over desktops and heftier laptops.

Windows Server 8’s changes will add increased storage ability over the former version, Windows Server 2008. The contrast between Windows 8’s enhanced mobility and Windows Server 8’s emphasis on building stationary infrastructures and databases may seem like a contradiction. But mobile devices require a high-quality hosting infrastructure to compensate for their own dearth of processing and storage resources.

Some of the features of Windows Server 8 include:

-Extended support for Microsoft SQL Server, Hyper-V, and Sharepoint

-Built-in data deduplication (redundant file removal)

-More flexible virtualization (virtual machines can be migrated between physical servers while continuing to operate)

-Thin provisioning, storage spaces and pools (storage virtualization), and Storage Management API (external storage array management)

onthenetOffice will be prepared to integrate with Windows 8 and Windows 8 Server in several ways. First, our desktop virtualization platforms and hosted applications provide accessible and secure online work environments. These services can be utilized by people using any mobile device and any operating system. Secondly, many of our desktop virtualization platforms include the predecessor to Windows 8 Server, Windows Server 2008. Our familiarity with the basic Windows Server interface will allow us to easily upgrade to the Windows Server 8 when we feel that the newer version more closely matches the requirements and preferences of our clients.

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