Windows Server 2012 R2 is the second iteration of Windows Server 2012.
Some of the new features in Windows Server 2012 R2 include hybrid cloud support, enhancements to storage and virtual machine (VM) portability. According to Microsoft, Windows Server 2012 R2 provides the following enhancements:
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- Virtual machine (VM) portability across customer, service provider and Windows Azure clouds computing environments.
- Cross-cloud management capabilities for virtual machine and storage resources.
- Offsite backup and disaster recovery options.
- Windows Azure technology to help customers create multi-tenant web and virtual machine cloud services.
- Site-to-Site VPN Gateway to help customers seamlessly bridge physical and virtual networks and extend them from a corporate data center to a service provider's data center.
- Features such as Storage Spaces Tiering, VHDX resizing and de-duplication for virtual desktop infrastructure to provide high performance for critical on-premises workloads (like SQL and Hyper-V) using lower-cost, commodity computers.
- Windows Server Work Folders, Web App Proxy and improvements to Active Directory Federation Services and other technologies to help companies give their employees consistent access to company resources on the device of their choice.