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Server App-V for Windows Azure Beta Added to SCVMM 2012 Test Release

When Microsoft released a beta version of its System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 earlier this week, it included the company's Server Application Virtualization tool for Windows Azure.

Also known as Server App-V, it will take existing applications and allow developers and IT to deploy them to a Windows Azure worker role without having to go through development and installation processes, the company said at last year's Professional Developers Conference. Server App-V can be found in the SCVMM 2012 beta, which is available for download here.

According to Microsoft, Server App-V builds on the technology used in the company's client Application Virtualization software, available via the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack, Microsoft Application Virtualization for Terminal Services and MSDN.

Server App-V allows for the separation of the application and state from the operating system, allowing for the packaging of existing Windows apps not designed for Windows Azure to be deployed on the Windows Azure worker role, said Kenon Owens, technical product manager for datacenter and virtualization management at Microsoft, in a December blog post.

"This process allows existing, on-premises applications to be deployed directly onto Windows Azure, providing yet more flexibility in how organizations can take advantage of Microsoft’s cloud capabilities," Owens noted.

That will allow applications mobility, simplified management and lower operational costs, Owens explained. The apps are converted into "Xcopyable" images, without requiring code changes to the apps "allowing you to host a variety of Windows [Server] 2008 apps on the Windows Azure worker role."

Microsoft released the first community technology preview (CTP) of Server App-V in December and plans a final release by the end of the year. The Server App-V documentation is available for download here.

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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