A lot of press was given to the RTM (Release To Manufacture) of Windows Server 2012 yesterday, August 1, 2012. But what wasn't known was whether Essentials was part of that good news.
Here's the latest I've heard, from the moderator at Microsoft TechNet > Resources for IT Professionals > Forums Home > Windows Server Forums > Windows Server 2012 Beta Essentials General:
With yesterday's release to manufacturing of Windows Server 2012, and August 15th availability on TechNet and MSDN:
and September 4th for General Availability. that leaves one question.
Will Windows Server 2012 Essentials be released on that same schedule?
kariya21 (MVP) Moderator:
No, Windows Server 2012 Essentials has not reached RTM status yet.
Aug 15 2012 Update:
Still looks like we may be waiting until September 4 2012 for Windows Server 2012, and no new news on Windows Server 2012 Essentials.
Paul Thurrott www.windowsitpro.com/article/windows8/windows-server-2012-schedules-metro-eu-143979
Mary Jo Foley twitter.com/dhan911/status/235783811659599872
Aug. 22 2012 Update:
Windows Server 2012 Release Candidate Essentials available now
We are now turning our sights towards the Windows Server 2012 Essentials release to manufacturing (RTM). The other Windows Server 2012 editions released to manufacturing at the beginning of August. Our goal has been to release Windows Server 2012 Essentials to manufacturing and make it generally available by the end of 2012, and we remain committed to this target.