By GABEY GOH
PETALING JAYA: Software giant Microsoft is on a campaign to demonstrate the business case for enterprises to upgrade when new operating system Windows 8 Enterprise, is commercially launched.
Highlights include enhanced fundamentals, new features and strong application compatibility, which the company hopes will be a compelling case for enterprise users.
Speaking to regional media via a conference call from TechEd North America, senior director of Windows commercial product marketing Erwin Visser called the forthcoming operating system a "re-imagining" of the Windows experience.
"However, Windows 8 Enterprise will also be able to run side by side with an organisation's current infrastructure, allowing them to easily leverage on and better use existing resources," said Visser.
He shared that talks with organisations have yielded much interest over the opportunities afforded with Windows 8 tablets in enterprise environments.
"What's great for organisations is that employees will be able to enjoy the mobility of a tablet with the productivity power of a PC," Visser said, adding that these upcoming tablets will also be backwards compatible with current Windows 7-based business apps.
Visser said the appeal of enterprise-ready tablets cuts across multiple industry verticals with Microsoft working with OEM partners to develop sanitisable tablets for deployment in hospitals, along with hardier variants of tablets for an interested telecommunications company for use by its field engineers.
Another feature of Windows 8 Enterprise that Visser said is getting much interest is Windows To Go, a fully manageable corporate Windows 8 environment which boots and runs from USB mass storage devices such as flash drives and external hard drives.
"Especially for companies with a large portion of their workforce working from home, this allows IT departments to ensure a secured environment and with no digital footprint left behind on the device used to load the operating system," he said.
For enterprises, a new batch of products
In line with the company's push to better serve enterprise needs, it also announced updates to several Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack products to help organisations manage, secure and enhance the Windows experience.
The beta for Microsoft BitLocker Administration and Monitoring 2.0 is now available, with improvements to make it easier for enterprises to protect data with BitLocker and BitLocker To Go.
The second beta for User Experience Virtualization will also be available by the end of the month.
Designed to give individuals the ability to change their device without reconfiguring applications or settings, new features include roaming of operating system settings, group policy support to ensure agent configuration consistency, and the roaming and syncing of settings between Internet Explorer 8, 9 and 10.
In addition to that, both the Microsoft Advanced Group Policy Management 4.0 Service Pack 1 beta and release candidate for the Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset 8 are now available for download.
The latest version of Windows Intune, the company's cloud-based management solution, has also been released, with new features focusing on mobile device management, people-centric management, and a new self-service company portal.
For more information, go to http://bit.ly/L2Mpye.