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Windows Logo Program for Server Applications: Overview

Updated: February 3, 2014

The Windows Server Application Certification Program offers rigorous testing tools and global exposure for applications pursuing compatibility, security, deployability, and manageability for on-premises IT environments, public clouds, and service-provider clouds.

The Windows Server Application Certification Program has evolved into an automated, free self-test program. The new "Certified for" Windows Server 2012 R2 Logo program and the "Certified for" Windows Server 2012 Logo program focus greater emphasis on the Compatibility, Security, and Management pillars of quality built into Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows Server 2012.

There is no fee for application testing and certification. Successfully passing the Windows Server Application Certification test instantly qualifies your application for the Certified for Windows Server Logo and listing in the Windows Server Catalog.

Applications successfully certified for Windows Server 2012 R2 are granted downlevel certification status for Windows Server 2012, assuming that drivers, if any, have passed appropriate Windows Hardware Certification testing.

Certification of an application is administered from the Microsoft Platform Ready website, where the application is profiled and is then completed with the upload of successful test results.

Benefits

The Application Certification for Windows Server program brings high value at no cost. You can:

  • Complement the QA process with a rigorous testing tool for compatibility and security.
  • Reach global market exposure with listing in the Windows Server Catalog.
  • Differentiate with a symbol of quality with the Certified for Windows Server 2012 R2 Logo.
  • Ensure customer satisfaction with an easily deployable application and lower support cost.
  • Earn credits toward Microsoft Partner Network Competency.

Take Advantage of the Windows Server Application Certification Requirements

If you are developing new Windows Server applications or updating current applications, use the companion, detailed Logo Requirements document for Windows Server Application Certification Program—along with the self-test tool—to help ensure your products are compatible, secure, and manageable on Windows Server. Your products will be better prepared for logo submission if you design and build with these requirements in mind.

Technical requirements include tests for the following:

  • Support running on Microsoft Hyper-V or Windows Azure virtual machine
  • Windows Installer best practices
  • Setup and primary functionality tests
  • Drivers and security
  • Optional Application Compatibility best practices

Advanced validations:

  • Optional validation for Server Core
  • Optional validation for System Center Management Pack
  • Optional validation for Windows Azure Pack Virtual Machine Role Gallery Resource

Download the Requirements for Windows Server Application Certification Program for:

Test your applications with the Microsoft Platform Ready Test Tool

The Microsoft Platform Ready Test Tool (MPR Tool) is designed to help improve compatibility of server applications on Windows Server, hosted by Microsoft Hyper-V or Windows Azure virtual machines. The MPR Tool is an automated, wizard-based tool and supports running on the Full Server Shell, Minimal Server Interface, Server Core configurations, and Windows 8.1 64-bit editions. This tool can help identify possible compatibility and readiness issues during installation, functionality, and removal of applications.

Detailed reports of compatibility and system stability test results are generated by the MPR Tool so that further actions can be taken to remediate identified issues. Limited waivers may be available after all attempts to remediate failures have been exhausted. A waiver request document must be submitted to MPR support.

Application drivers must pass Windows Hardware Certification testing for Windows Server 2012 R2 and be signed by Microsoft. Drivers must be signed for both Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows Server 2012 in order for application to be granted a downlevel logo. Applications using different driver files for each operating system can be granted the downlevel logo through the waiver process. See the Driver Signing Guidelines for ISVs page for details.

Microsoft strongly encourages incorporating the MPR Tool into the software build and test processes, thereby ensuring platform readiness before applications are released to market. The MPR Tool is also a recommended tool for IT Pro’s when testing line of business applications and for evaluating server products for their platform compatibility or before making purchasing decisions.

When running the MPR Tool on Server Core or Minimal Server Interface installations, run the command-line version of the tool, MPRConsole.exe, located in the Program Files folder.

Download the Microsoft Platform Ready Test Tool for:

Submit test results for Certified for Windows Server Logo

  1. Use the MPR Tool to test your application.
    • Fully test your application following guided instructions in the tool.
    • Fix any failures in your application and pass the test.
  2. Create a profile for your application on the Microsoft Platform Ready website.
    • Navigate to the Microsoft Platform Ready website.
    • Log in with your Live ID, create a profile for your application, and select the version of Windows Server as a supported technology by your application.
    • Make a note of your unique Application ID from the Test tab under Test My Apps.
  3. Create a Test Results Package using the MPR Tool.
    • In the MPR Tool, select Reports and choose the option to create a Test Results Package. (Only available on Windows Server full GUI and Windows x64.)
    • Enter the Application ID you made a note of in step 2, and then read, review, and sign the required agreements.
  4. Upload the Test Results Package on the Microsoft Platform Ready website.
    • Log in to the Microsoft Platform Ready website using the same Live ID you used in step 2.
    • Go to your application’s dashboard, and select the Test My Apps workflow.
    • Upload the Test Results Package compressed file created in step 3.
  5. Verify a successful upload.
    • Verify that your upload is successful from the messages displayed in the Test My Appsworkflow. This can take several minutes after step 4.
    • Test results that pass will unlock any associated benefits including the logo.
    • Applications that pass will be listed on the Windows Server Catalog website automatically.

Important Microsoft Partner Network options are available beyond Certification on the Microsoft Platform Ready website.

Applications that have earned the Windows Server Logo are compatible running on the following editions of Windows Server: Datacenter, Standard, and Essentials.

Windows Server 2008 R2 Logo ProgramDiscontinued March 31, 2013.

Effective March 31, 2013, Windows Server 2008 R2 test submissions are no longer being accepted for Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) Competencies, Works with Logo, or Certified for Windows Server Logo. Windows Server 2012 R2 is currently the preferred platform for Certified for Windows Server Logo.

Resources

Microsoft Server and Cloud Platform

Windows Server Development

Windows Server Catalog

Microsoft Platform Ready website

TechNet Forum for Windows Server Application Logo Certification

Remediation for Test Failures of the Windows Server Application Certification Program

Driver Signing Guidelines for ISVs

System Center Authoring Hub

Windows and Windows Server Compatibility Cookbook

Certification requirements for Windows desktop apps

App certification requirements for the Windows Store