We're getting ready to enable the use of Microsoft Windows Server on Amazon EC2 later this Fall.
You will be able to use Amazon EC2 to host highly scalable ASP.NET sites, high performance computing (HPC) clusters, media transcoders, SQL Server, and more. You can run Visual Studio (or another development environment) on your desktop and run the finished code in the Amazon cloud.
The 32 and 64 bit versions of Windows Server will be available and will be able to use all existing EC2 features such as Elastic IP Addresses, Availability Zones, and the Elastic Block Store. You'll be able to call any of the other Amazon Web Services from your application. You will, for example, be able to use the Amazon Simple Queue Service to glue cross-platform applications together.
Existing EC2 tools will be able to launch Windows-powered EC2 instances. Once launched, you can use the Windows Remote Desktop or the rdesktop tool to access your instances.
I fully expect to see this new level of flexibility used to create complex, highly scalable, heterogeneous EC2 applications using a mix of Linux, Solaris, and Windows instances, all on a pay-as-you-go basis.
The product is currently in a private beta and is scheduled for public release before the end of 2008. I will, of course, have more to say about this exciting new development as we get closer to the release date. If you'd like to be notified when this new offering is available, just let us know.
We'll be at the PDC (Professional Developers Conference) in Los Angeles at the end of October. Be sure to stop by our booth to say hello if you are at the conference.
Update: Windows instance pricing will be strictly pay-as-you-go, like our other services. Customers will only pay for as much or little as they actually use; of course the actual price will be higher than Linux-based instances, due to the cost of Windows licenses. We'll announce specific pricing when we make the service broadly available later this Fall.