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Report: Windows Server 2012 Adoption Slow To Take Off

Most enterprises -- particularly those with fewer than 1,000 employees -- have yet to deploy Windows Server 2012 eight months after its release, according to a new report this week from Symantec.

Symantec surveyed 530 organizations worldwide for its report, published Tuesday. A little more than half (56 percent) of the respondents said that they do plan to deploy Windows Server 2012. However, the overwhelming majority (93 percent) has yet to do so.

Of those planning to move to Windows Server 2012, 13 percent are waiting for the first service pack, 15 percent will do it within six months, 17 percent will do it within a year, and 11 percent plan to wait longer.

It may not be surprising that organizations appear to be moving slowly to Windows Server 2012, since IT decision makers are typically conservative about introducing new platforms into their datacenters. Nevertheless, IDC in February reported that Windows Server hardware's overall growth increased 3.2 percent in the fourth calendar quarter of last year, though it's unclear how much of those sales are systems with Windows Server 2012.

"It's going to be a wait and see," said Susie Spencer, a senior product marketing manager at Symantec. "Those that are more risk takers will jump on board pretty soon but those wanting to make sure everything is tested and tried before they implement it in their organization are going to wait before they move to Windows Server 2012."

For those that are planning to move to Windows Server 2012, the key reason for doing so is to run SQL Server (67 percent), followed by Active Directory Exchange Controllers (61 percent), Exchange (58 percent), file and print servers (54 percent), and SharePoint (52 percent).

Key new capabilities in Windows Server 2012 respondents are seeking are improved VDI, Hyper-V virtualization and the new Resilient File System (ReFS), according to the survey. PowerShell improvements and refined disk de-duplication were close followers, Spencer said.

The survey also found that only 18 percent have more than three-quarters of their IT environments virtualized, while 52 percent plan to be completely virtualized within two years. A survey of Redmond magazine readers found only 12 percent have upgraded to System Center 2012, which -- combined with Windows 2012 -- comprises the underpinnings of Microsoft's so-called cloud OS strategy. The good news is that third parties have suggested that improvements to Hyper-V in Windows Server 2012 have, for the first time, made the Microsoft hypervisor a viable alternative to the VMware stack.

About the Author

Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.

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