Windows Server for Enterprises: A Deep Dive

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By Redress Compliance

Key Takeaways:

  • Windows Server 2016 is a multi-faceted server operating system that was released in September. It focuses on Windows/Hyper-V/Azure, but also leverages open source developments like Docker. It offers two license options: Datacenter or Standard, and three installation choices: GUI server, server core, and Nano server. However, older 64-bit CPUs may not work with Hyper-V virtualization infrastructure.
  • The licensing options for Windows Server 2012 were covered in a previous article. Legacy versions covered by Software Assurance already operate under the use rights of Windows Server 2012. There is no longer a Windows Server Enterprise version, and grants are based on virtualizing in a private cloud. Each Windows Server Enterprise 2008 R2 license covered by Software Assurance can be renewed with two Windows Server Standard licenses, with entitlement to four VMs. Windows Server Datacenter licenses are now sold as two processor licenses, and any two previous Datacenter licenses can be renewed with one 2012 Datacenter license. Licenses not covered under Software Assurance will need to be upgraded by purchasing a full license. With 2012 and 2012 R2, there are only two main editions: Standard and Datacenter, both allowing for the same hardware utilization.
  • The #POWERCON2022 event held its second event of the year with a busy agenda. Topics discussed included modern workplace management of operating systems (Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, iOS), and infrastructure security. The event aimed to provide valuable insights and knowledge to attendees and included sharing experiences and best practices for businesses and organizations to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies in the industry.
  • Microsoft introduced container technology on Windows with Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 3 in August 2015. This was in response to the success of Docker on Linux and Microsoft’s desire to implement container technology on their operating systems. Containers can be compared to shipping containers, which revolutionized world trade in the 1950s. Advantages of containers include speed, cost-effectiveness, standardization, and isolation.
  • Updates to Windows Server 2019 include the Windows Insider Program for Server, providing enterprises the ability to deploy the Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview builds and test new enterprise features. The Windows Admin Center can be downloaded to manage server environments more effectively. The preview and Admin Center can be downloaded now through the provided links.
  • Learning paths for Windows Server are available through Microsoft Learn. Topics include Windows Server deployment, configuration, and administration; Hyper-V and Virtualization; file server and storage management; Windows Server high availability; Active Directory Domain Services; and Windows Server network infrastructure. Each learning path is free and covers various aspects of the topic in detail.

Introduction to Windows Server 2016

Windows Server 2016 is the latest version of the Windows Server operating system family. It is considered to be one of the most stable and secure server operating systems available worldwide, due to its cutting-edge features. This section will introduce the fundamental features of Windows Server 2016, while also outlining the licensing options available for Windows Server 2012. This will provide readers with a comprehensive understanding of the capabilities and advantages of these operating systems.

Licensing options for Windows Server 2012

Windows Server 2012 offers different licensing options, depending on whether you have Software Assurance coverage. If you do, you get lower-cost upgrade paths from your existing license. But, if you don’t have Software Assurance, you must buy full upgrades to the latest version. These are pricier.

Check out the table below for more info:

License Type Description
Software Assurance License Lower-cost upgrade path for existing license holders.
Full Upgrade License Required for those without Software Assurance coverage to purchase full upgrades.

Remember, you need to think of the number of users and the features they need. Each of them may have different requirements. Weigh up the pros and cons of each option.

To sum up, we haven’t covered in detail unique details about Windows Server 2012’s licensing options. So, take a look at your current situation to choose the most economical and efficient license. Plus, if you have Software Assurance on your licenses, don’t feel guilty about upgrading. Just think of it as getting a free pass to Windows Server 2016!

Upgrading licenses covered by Software Assurance

Software Assurance by Microsoft provides a licensing program that offers users access to certain updates and new versions of software for a set period. There are two ways to upgrade licenses under this program: Full license upgrades or upgrading covered licenses.

Organizations can buy an upgrade for every existing server license they have, or opt for a partial upgrade, depending on their needs. Upgrades let users switch from current operating systems like Windows Server 2012 to newer versions like Windows Server 2016.

To better understand the difference between full and partial upgrades offered by Software Assurance, refer to the comparison table below:

Full License Upgrade Upgrading Covered Licenses
Users can upgrade licenses that haven’t been licensed with Software Assurance for the last 90 days. Eligible licenses had active Software Assurance coverage either at the time of purchase, or as of August 1st, 2015.
Full license upgrade is only available when replacing an existing qualified server license. Upgrading covered licenses can be used when replacing either Standard or Datacenter Edition server licenses bought through retail (FPP) or OEM.
No requirement to have licensed any version of Windows Server before buying full licenses. Clients must own base licenses eligible for SA coverage.
Organizations can choose to upgrade all servers or specific ones. Partial upgrades apply to licenses with active Software Assurance coverage at the time of Windows Server 2012 R2 General Availability announcement (June 3rd, 2013).

Apart from the criteria in the table, organizations should also consider budget, server roles, virtualization rights, custom plans, and type & quantity of servers when deciding which upgrade to choose. Upgrading licenses covered by Software Assurance can benefit any organization looking to stay up-to-date with the latest software and security updates.

Full license upgrade

Organizations have two options to upgrade to Windows Server 2012: upgrade existing licenses with Software Assurance or purchase a Full License Upgrade. Those without a previous Windows Server version or an eligible operating system license need the Full License Upgrade.

This license allows them to install the appropriate edition of Windows Server on a physical server or virtual machine. It also gives them access to all features, including Hyper-V, Remote Desktop Services, Storage Spaces Direct (S2D), software-defined networking (SDN), Linux secure boot, and shielded virtual machines.

For extra functionality like S2D and SDN, a full license upgrade is necessary.

In conclusion, the Full License Upgrade for Windows Server 2012 is suitable for companies without an existing eligible operating system license or those seeking full access to all its features. This option offers enterprise-level benefits, with several significant enhancements included.

#POWERCON2022 event highlights

At #POWERCON2022, Windows Server for Enterprises was a featured topic, and we have the highlights for you! This section explores the event’s discussions on modern workplace issues such as remote work, OS management, and infrastructure security. Join us as we break down the cutting-edge insights and advancements shared at the event.

Modern workplace topics

This article examines all aspects of Windows Server: its licensing options, updates, and learning paths. It focuses particularly on one topic: “Modern Workplace features“. This looks at how Windows Server 2016 tackles mobility and productivity in today’s work environment.

Windows Server 2016 offers a range of features to create a modern work environment. VDI helps staff access applications and data remotely, from any device. WIP limits sensitive data usage across networks and devices. RDS enables secure access to corporate resources from outside the office. These features boost productivity and data security.

Plus, Windows Server 2016 is designed for Hybrid Cloud scenarios. It integrates on-premises infrastructure with Azure-based services. For example, Azure AD lets you log in to cloud and on-premises apps with one sign-on. Azure Backup helps protect data across hybrid environments.

In conclusion, Windows Server 2016‘s modern workplace topics offer a lot of features. They help businesses and employees streamline processes and ensure data security.

Management of operating systems

The management of operating systems is a must-have in today’s IT environments. Windows Server 2016 provides many tools and features to help IT admins to do this.

For example, the Windows Server Update Services (WSUS). This helps admins to control updates for Windows servers and workstations. They can approve, distribute, and deploy them across the network. This way, all systems are kept up to date with the latest security patches and bug fixes.

System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) is another tool for managing operating systems. It allows organizations to deploy applications, updates, and operating systems on multiple devices with one console. This tool can also be used to troubleshoot remotely, track inventories, and monitor compliance.

Furthermore, Group Policy settings can be configured in Windows Server 2016. These policies are used to control user and computer configurations. They can be used to guarantee security, stop unauthorized access, and customize user interfaces to meet certain standards.

Windows Server 2016 provides a full package of tools for the efficient management of operating systems, making sure that they are secure, up to date, and working properly.

Infrastructure security

Security of infrastructure is essential for enterprise-level orgs. Windows Server provides protection with its scalable security measures. It has a set of built-in security features, encryption options, and secure network protocols. Making it a great choice for admins wanting to secure their data and computing environment.

Shielded VMs are included in Windows Server 2016. It protects virtual machines from malware and unauthorised access. This strengthens its infrastructure against intrusion attempts. Windows Server also supports multi-factor authentication such as biometrics, smart cards, and two-factor authentication.

Moreover, Windows Server works with leading security software providers adding another level of protection. It integrates server message block (SMB) protocol signing, blocking attacks that try to exploit file transfer services found on server networks.

To sum up, the enhancements in Windows Server are vital for system admins to build strong systems that can withstand cyberattacks.

Deep dive into Windows Server Containers and Docker

If you are an enterprise IT professional looking to optimize your Windows Server environment, containers are a tool you should definitely consider. In this section, we will take a deep dive into Windows Server Containers and Docker – two of the most popular container technologies. First, we will introduce you to the basics of container technology. Then, we will delve into the specific advantages that containers provide for enterprise IT. Containers can help your organization achieve greater scalability, security, and flexibility.

Introduction to container technology

Container tech is becoming popular with modern developers. Packaging apps and their dependencies into efficient and portable software, containers are a great tool for simplifying app dev. Windows Server provides access to both Windows Server Containers and Hyper-V Containers.

The advantages of containers are their lightweight and modularity. This allows developers to quickly build and deploy without the VM overhead. Also, containers offer portability, making it easier to test and deploy across different environments.

Microsoft appreciates container tech and has added new functions. Windows Server 2019 now supports Kubernetes orchestration. This gives more use cases for container tech, plus other management tools and frameworks.

In short, containers offer numerous advantages for modern app dev and management. Windows Server’s support for containers and extra features help streamline processes and improve workflows.

Advantages of containers

Containers are a hot technology in modern workplaces because of their many advantages. They create isolated and portable app environments, making deployment and testing simpler and faster. They’re lightweight and use fewer resources than traditional virtual machines. They let you quickly deploy, scale and manage multiple apps on one host. They’re easily replicated, speeding up disaster recovery, backup and restoration. And you can customize your own stacks with the dependencies you need. Plus, they support container orchestration platforms like Kubernetes.

Containers also make it easier to use infrastructure resources. Windows Server Containers help developers write cloud-native apps that work on Windows-based platforms. IT pros should stay up-to-date on new features, so events like #POWERCON2022 are great for learning from experts and staying ahead of the curve. Be informed about the latest updates for Windows Server! Events like #POWERCON2022 will show you the newest features and possibilities of Windows Server 2019. Adopt the best practices for containers and other technologies with this unique opportunity.

Windows Server 2019 updates

Windows Server 2019 updates are important for IT professionals, especially those working in large enterprises. This section will cover the Windows Insider Program for Server, the Windows Server 2019 preview, and the Windows Admin Center. These updates introduce new features and improvements that can enhance your organization’s network performance, security, and overall efficiency.

Windows Insider Program for Server

The Windows Insider Program for Server, provided by Microsoft, is a great resource for enterprises. It gives IT professionals early access to new features and they can experiment with them before the public release. This helps them gain insight into upcoming tech developments and shape future versions of Windows Server.

Moreover, program members can take advantage of early releases and feature updates through the Windows Update service. This allows them to test new tech quickly without waiting for full product releases. There are support forums and documentation to aid in testing.

The open forum approach of the Windows Insider Program lets businesses give direct feedback. This helps improve Microsoft’s flagship server operating system. Perfect for IT professionals who want to be up to date with Windows Server innovations or have a passion for groundbreaking tech. Join the Windows Insider Program for Server and preview the future with Windows Server 2019 preview and the powerful Windows Admin Center.

Windows Server 2019 preview and Windows Admin Center

Microsoft’s Windows Server 2019 preview offers improved features such as a focus on security, hybrid cloud scenarios, and hyper-converged infrastructure. The Windows Admin Center provides an easy way to manage various workloads across different environments. It consolidates various tools into a single entry point for a more streamlined experience.

Unique features of this release include the ability to use Windows Containers and Storage Spaces Direct to manage both modern and traditional applications via containers. These improvements provide better scalability in virtualization environments while ensuring redundancy and fault tolerance concerns are addressed. Server Core App Compatibility allows for older applications to integrate with newer versions of Windows Server without needing a full upgrade.

If you want to increase your Windows Server knowledge, use the learning paths provided with Windows Server 2019 preview and Windows Admin Center.

Learning paths for Windows Server

When it comes to mastering Windows Server for enterprise use, the learning path can be challenging. In this section, we’ll explore various paths to effectively learn the ins and outs of different aspects of Windows Server. From deployment and configuration to file servers and network infrastructure, we’ll cover the different sub-sections that will be crucial for anyone looking to manage a Windows Server environment effectively.

Deployment, configuration, and administration

This section discusses the activities involved in deploying, configuring, and administering a Windows Server. It covers installing, setting up network settings, managing user accounts, and maintaining the server. To get a full understanding of deployment, configuration, and administration in Windows Server, you need to consider the topics listed in the table below.

Topic Objective
Installation How to install server software manually or remotely
Configuration settings Server hardware configurations and settings
User account management How to create user accounts with various levels of privileges
Maintenance & Troubleshooting Backup management, system clean-up, and diagnosis and resolution of common issues

Thanks to tools like Windows Admin Center, deployment has become simpler. The Windows Server 2016 edition has made the application binary process more flexible with the introduction of containers that can work on both physical servers or virtual machines.

Back in the day, setting up Active Directory (AD) service required pre-configuration before installation. Over time, this process has been simplified, with integration into the setup.

Unlock your virtualization potential with Hyper-V and Windows Server!

Hyper-V and Virtualization

Virtualization tech is essential for Windows Server operations. Hyper-V makes it possible to run multiple OSs on one physical machine. This provides hardware abstraction, resource isolation, and flexibility. With Hyper-V, users can migrate workloads without any downtime.

Windows Server offers tools to manage virtual machines, like RemoteFX. This simplifies deploying virtual desktops and apps. Virtualization also helps save costs. Organizations can consolidate servers, reducing the need for equipment and maintenance.

RDS provides secure remote access, allowing flexible working arrangements with no risk to network security. Hyper-V and virtualization tech are integral for modern server ops. One org reported a 40% decrease in costs after migrating to a Hyper-V enabled, virtualized environment. Fewer physical servers mean lower maintenance and expenses. Windows Server helps to reduce costs while maintaining performance.

File servers and storage management

File server and storage management are key to boosting enterprise productivity. Access to the right files, quickly and securely, is essential. Administrators should use features such as deduplication and storage tiers for optimal storage and cost savings.

Moreover, technologies like DFS, NAS, and SAN can provide strong, extensible file sharing options and easy management.

Windows Server 2016 offers useful tools for setting up efficient file servers. Backing up, restoring, and providing high availability are all possible with the help of ReFS. Applying these tools correctly guarantees business continuity, even in the event of unexpected system problems.

Windows Server high availability

Windows Server High Availability is essential for flawless server performance, with no unexpected downtime. It provides redundant copies of resources across multiple servers. It has key features designed to reach the high availability goal. These features are: clustered nodes, fault-tolerant networking, application resiliency, nested virtual machine shielding and live migration with shared-nothing.

Businesses that use Windows Server High Availability get extra functionality on top of the Windows Server platform. This allows for flexible operations and faster disaster recovery. Cluster-aware updates give safe, automated patching of critical systems. Companies can also choose Azure Site Recovery for a strong disaster recovery solution. It covers replication between sites and adding customer applications/services to existing VMs.

Active Directory Domain Services

To efficiently manage Active Directory Domain Services, it is necessary to know its components. This includes Group Policy, Domain Controllers, Forests and Trees, and Sites and Services Configuration. The table below shows a summary of the most critical features of Active Directory Domain Services.

Components Description
User Accounts Make user accounts and groups with specific rights.
Group Policies Control how users interact with their workstations with centralized policy settings.
Domain Controllers A server instance for verifying user logins and domain services.
Forests and Trees Bundles of domain objects that make large-scale management simpler.
Sites and Services Configuration Assign domains to physical locations or configure replication.

Besides managing the components already mentioned, Active Directory Domain Services also enforces security policies and configurations on user accounts. Furthermore, it configures trust relationships between systems within a network infrastructure. If you are responsible for managing Active Directory Domain Services, it is important to learn all components and how they work together to create a secure and reliable network.

Windows Server Network Infrastructure

Gaining understanding of Windows Server Network Infrastructure is vital. Check out the topics below to learn more:

Topic Description
DNS Domain Name System (DNS) resolves domain names to IP addresses. Windows Server has an integrated DNS server that can be set up for high availability.
DHCP Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) automates IP allocation. DHCP servers help manage IP configurations in large-scale networks.
VPN Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) give secure remote access to network resources over public or untrusted networks through encryption. Windows Server supports various VPN protocols.
Routing Windows Server offers routing services to facilitate traffic between internal and external networks, or between subnets in large internal networks.
DirectAccess A feature in Windows Server 2008 R2 enables seamless connectivity for remote clients without a traditional VPN connection.

Other components of Windows Server Network Infrastructure include Wireless Networking, Network Address Translation (NAT), Quality of Service (QoS) mechanisms, etc.

IT pros must be familiar with different aspects of Windows Server Network Infrastructure. This knowledge helps them make smart network design decisions and ensure smooth network operations.

Conclusion and key takeaways

So, wrapping up: Windows Server for Enterprises: A Deep Dive is a great asset! It shows the many advantages of Windows Server tech for organizations. It’s key points? Improved security, scalability, and performance. Plus, tools like Active Directory, Hyper-V, and PowerShell for data control and automation.

The article also has top-notch info on licensing, setup, and Windows Server management. This is vital for organizations planning, installing, and keeping their IT systems.

Five Facts About Windows Server for Enterprises: A Deep Dive:

  • ✅Windows Server 2016 was released in September 2016 and is a multi-faceted server OS that focuses on Windows/Hyper-V/Azure, but also leverages open source developments like Docker. (Source: Computerworld)
  • ✅There are two license options for Windows Server 2016: Datacenter or Standard, and three installation choices: GUI server, server core, and Nano server. (Source: Computerworld)
  • ✅Windows Server 2019 updates include new enterprise features and can be accessed through the Windows Insider Program for Server. (Source: Mountainss’s Blog)
  • ✅Windows Server offers learning paths for Windows Server deployment, configuration, and administration, Hyper-V and Virtualization, file server and storage management, Windows Server high availability, Active Directory, and networking. (Source: Microsoft Tech Community)
  • ✅Container technology on Windows was introduced with Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 3 in August 2015 and allows for advantages such as speed, cost-effectiveness, standardization, and isolation, similar to shipping containers that revolutionized world trade in the 1950s. (Source: Xebia Blog)

FAQs about Windows Server For Enterprises: A Deep Dive

What are the licensing options for Windows Server 2016?

Windows Server 2016 offers two license options: Datacenter or Standard, and three installation choices: GUI server, server core, and Nano server.

What are the advantages of using containers in Windows Server?

Containers in Windows Server offer advantages such as speed, cost-effectiveness, standardization, and isolation. They can be compared to shipping containers that revolutionized world trade in the 1950s and will change software delivery.

How do I access the Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview builds?

You can access the Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview builds through the Windows Insider Program for Server, which can be accessed at

What modules are available for learning Windows Server?

There are various learning paths available for Windows Server that cover topics such as deployment, configuration, administration, virtualization, file server and storage management, high availability, Active Directory, and networking. These learning paths are free and include modules that cover different aspects of the topic.

What is the purpose of the Nano Server option?

The Nano Server option in Windows Server 2016 is designed for DevOps and has a minimized kernel API. It provides a lightweight environment for running containers.

How do I upgrade licenses not covered under Software Assurance?

Licenses not covered under Software Assurance will need to be upgraded by purchasing a full license. Prices vary widely depending on the version and licensing options chosen.

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