If you're a small business looking to run your data center on dedicated servers, your choice of operating system is clearly going to be an important decision.
Small businesses might not be able to justify investing in Windows Server 2012 Standard Edition, but happily, this isn't the only option if you want to use Microsoft technology as the basis for your data center.
If you've got fewer than 25 users of your network, you should look at Windows Server 2012 Essentials. While you don't get access to features such as Microsoft Hyper-V with this, information website ServerWatch said you should find it does offer all the vital tools to get your firm up and running.
For example, it does offer a number of new capabilities that weren't present in previous editions of Small Business Server, such as the ability to hook up to Microsoft's cloud services, like Azure and Office 365.
This could be important for many businesses in the coming years, as news publication Windows IT Pro stated Microsoft's vision for the future is a 'cloud OS' environment where much of a network's operations are hosted remotely.
ServerWatch also noted one of the great things about Windows Server 2012 Essentials is that it comes with an easy to use Dashboard interface that lets an administrator take complete control of all crucial management functions.
This offers an intuitive graphical user interface with point and click controls that can help users find information, view warning messages and perform some of the most commonly-used actions.
It was noted: "The management tools are designed to make it easy for anyone to administer the system with a minimal amount of experience."
The publication concluded that although the product is more limited than the Standard edition, the access it provides to Microsoft's cloud offerings makes for a solid product that's capable of meeting the basic server needs of any small business.
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