While the Windows client team likes to do its own thing with product names—Windows Vista and Millennium Edition being the two most obvious examples—the Windows Server team has always been a lot more predictable. And so it is with Windows Server “8”, which will enter the market as ... wait for it ... Windows Server 2012 when it’s finalized later this year.

You were expecting maybe Windows Server RT?

Even the announcement was boring. “Windows Server ‘8’ will officially be named Windows Server 2012,” a Microsoft statement reads. “The new ‘cloud-optimized OS’ is due out later this year.”

The new name was officially announced by Microsoft corporate VP Brad Anderson at the Microsoft Management Summit in Las Vegas on Tuesday, one day after the company revealed its branding and retailing plans for Windows 8.

Windows Server 2012 is being developed concurrently with Windows 8 and is expected to ship at the same time. Highlights of this version include a new multi-server management scheme, a stellar Hyper-V upgrade, and a new emphasis on PowerShell. You can read my lengthy preview of the preview version of Windows Server 2012 on the SuperSite for Windows.