Microsoft: ARM-Based Windows Server Isn't Coming Anytime Soon

Brad Chacos

Microsoft’s been tripping over itself to show ARM some love and develop a tablet version of Windows 8 that can run on the developer’s low-powered processors. But don’t think the giant in Redmond is smitten just because of all the batted eyelashes and blown kisses; Intel was busy showing off Windows 8 on a tablet at the IDF yesterday, and to top that off, Microsoft’s VP of cloud and servers said that the company isn’t developing an ARM-powered version of its upcoming Windows Server 8.

When VP Bill Liang was asked flat-out whether an ARM-based build of the operating system was in the cards, he didn’t mince words – too much. "The answer in the short term is no," Liang said. Computerworld reports that he went on to explain that Windows Server running on ARM architecture just didn’t hold much appeal for Microsoft right now.

For one thing, the energy savings in an ARM-based version of Windows Server wouldn’t be as apparent as they are in a tablet running an ARM-based version of Windows 8, because servers use a lot of power in other areas of hardware. "On a server, the chip is only one part of the power consumption," Liang explained. Another big issue: Windows server is built for a 64-bit architecture, whereas ARM processors top out at 32-bit.

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