Windows Server powers many of the world’s largest data centers, but it also delivers value to small and midsize manufacturers. Windows Server 2012 redefines the server category, delivering hundreds of new features and enhancements that span virtualization, networking, storage, user experience, cloud computing, automation, and more. For manufacturing operations, virtualizing Windows Server 2012 through a cloud service provider (CSP) can help transform IT operations, reducing costs and delivering an entirely new level of business value.

But why Windows Server 2012?

Windows Server 2012 provides a scalable, highly available platform for mission-critical applications and offers enhanced support for open standards, open source applications and various development languages. Windows Server 2012 also makes it easier to deploy a virtual desktop infrastructure, and can lower storage costs. Virtual Desktop Infrastructure in Windows Server 2012 enables manufacturers to access IT from virtually anywhere, providing a rich Windows experience while ensuring enhanced data security and compliance.

For small and midsize manufacturers considering Windows cloud server hosting Windows Server 2012 offers optimum flexibility. Quality CSPs provide a number of Windows 2012 hosting plans, along with support for Windows 8 as well. These kinds of plans harness cloud solutions to advance business growth. Windows cloud servers offered through quality CSPs are 100 percent protected, 100 percent secure, 100 percent scalable and deliver 100 percent uptime. 

Windows virtual server hosting using Windows 2012 delivers a host of benefits, from the ability to select a graphical user interface to dramatically simplified licensing. Its Server Manager offers multi-server capabilities, making it extremely easy to deploy roles and features remotely to physical and virtual servers. Windows 2012 incorporates integrated security features such as Dynamic Access Control (DAC) and adds Storage Spaces, a new feature that enables users to create a storage pool using inexpensive hard drives. Its Hyper-V Replica replication mechanism provides true disaster recovery capabilities to independent manufacturers that might otherwise find that kind of solution unattainable due to cost constraints.

To ensure comprehensive data protection, organizations considering a move to Windows virtual server hosting should expect free onsite and offsite backup using application-consistent snapshot technology. With application-consistent snapshots, entire servers or individual files can be restored in minutes in a consistent state. Database and disk transactions are complete and free of data corruption.

Manufacturers should also require that their cloud service provider offer perimeter intrusion detection prevention and perimeter anti-virus/anti-malware with Windows virtual server hosting. This ensures that every network transaction is inspected by unique perimeter devices, blocking known attacks and CVEs. Viruses and malware transmitted over unencrypted connections are blocked before they reach the client’s server.

Complementing Windows 2012, enterprise ERP solutions can now live and prosper in the cloud as well – and CSPs can install, manage, update, protect and support ERP software for a low monthly fee.

Windows cloud servers enable small and midsize manufacturers to stay lean, scale instantly when required and fight cloud sprawl. They permit organizations to do business anywhere, empowering them to be faster and bolder than competitors who have yet to make the move.

Adam Stern is founder and CEO of Infinitely Virtual ( in Los Angeles.

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