It's about abstracting away the individual data and making larger assignments about the types of data that live
on your system, and the types of users that should and should not have access to it. It's a new way of thinking
that very much complements the strong abilities of the file system to secure data.
To take full advantage of these additions, you'll need to make minimal schema additions to Active Directory. You
can begin using the lion's share of the feature set of DAC with just a Windows Server 2012 file server and a domain
controller -- it's not a wholesale upgrade. It's a helpful addition to Windows Server 2012.
Virtual Desktop Infrastructure improvements
RemoteFX technology, which has been part of Windows Server for some time, brings local-quality graphics to
hosted sessions over the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP).
One of the big wins in Windows Server 2012 is the elimination of the requirement for physical GPU cards and
video cards in servers to take advantage of RemoteFX. This was expensive and tough to scale; you essentially needed
a dedicated GPU in a server in a data center for
every graphics-oriented user you had on a virtual desktop of a hosted Remote Desktop session.
Now, virtualized GPUs that take on much of this work are available, and standard server boxes with no special
video equipment can host high-performance sessions.
Indeed, in side-by-side tests I witnessed at the recent TechEd conference, a Windows 8 RDP session hosted on a
Windows Server 2012 unit with no special hardware worked dramatically better than a Windows Server 2008 R2-based
session with a physical GPU using RemoteFX. The graphics were smooth, the latency was nearly nonexistent, and there
were no gaps in audio playback. 3D rendering also worked smoothly with keyboard and mouse and touch interaction. A
lot of work was done to the RDP protocol itself in Windows Server 2012 to improve remote multitouch events with as
little overhead and as much responsiveness as possible. The payoff shows.
The operating system creates a separate virtual hard disk (VHD) file that stores user personalization
information. When users log in to a pooled desktop, Windows will stream this personal VHD to create a personalized