A: VMM 2012 represents Microsoft’s next major update of its Hyper-V management platform. Adding support for infrastructure as a service, private cloud management, and other features, this update represents a significant improvement toward managing multi-server Hyper-V environments.

VMM 2012’s private cloud focus brings service modeling and configuration, image-based management, delegation of control, and self-service improvements to many of the functions first found in earlier versions. VMM 2012 also adds dynamic optimization and power optimization features, which provide proactive, cluster-wide load balancing and load consolidation of virtual machines. The updated software also extends virtual platform management to include VMware ESX and Citrix XenServer hosts, among a other new and improved capabilities.

VMM 2012 is currently in beta, available as either a software installation or via a pre-configured Windows Server VHD. More information about its new features along with a download link can be found in this TechNet blog.