Microsoft has had the busiest of summers as far as it software solutions are concerned. Not only did the company launch a multitude of apps, brought Office 365 to iOS and Android, Redmond launched many preview versions of its operating systems.

The primary among them was Windows 8.1 Preview, which was installed by a large number of users.

But the technology titan also launched a public preview version of Windows Server 2012 R2 in June. This is the next major release of its server operating system β€” one that is largely based on Windows 8.1.

And now the company has put up a new blog post that does a great job of covering and summarizing everything that is new and improved in Windows Server 2012 R2. One of the main enhancements has to do with improved hard drive storage performance.

As Microsoft puts it:

β€œThe storage tiering feature of Storage Spaces in Windows Server 2012 R2 automatically tiers data across hard disks and solid state drives based on usage to dramatically increase storage performance and cost efficiency.”

This nifty little feature could potentially have an acute effect on server storage solutions.

Another important new feature is the inclusion of a new in-box gateway that allows connections to both physical servers and virtual networks over the Internet.

And not just that, Microsoft has also bundled cross-version live migration. This handy feature will make live a bit easier for system administrators and IT department heads as it allows virtual machines that use Windows Server 2012 to upgrade to the R2 version with no downtime.

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