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Windows Server 8: 3 Reasons Why You'll Upgrade

Rolling out a new client operating system is a complex, lengthy process fraught with risk. A new server OS is less stressful, mainly because we're usually a bit happier to have multiple server OS versions running in the datacenter.

With that in mind, the Server edition of Windows 8 is something every organization should look at closely. Here's why:

  1. Optional GUI. Removing the GUI shell from Server is as easy as unchecking a checkbox or running a PowerShell command, and doing so can increase server stability and reduce the number of patches that have to be installed. Microsoft is on a mission to remove the GUI entirely, so Windows Server 8 is your chance to start getting used to the brave new world on your own terms. You'll rely on rich, client-side GUIs and on the PowerShell command-line. It's happening. Not everyone is happy about that, but it's happening anyway. Might as well start getting used to it.

  2. Better manageability for server groups. Because much, if not most, of Windows Server 8's management is now PowerShell-based, even management GUIs (which you'll still have) can more easily manage batches of servers through PowerShell's Remoting features. Combined with PowerShell v3's Workflow feature, multi-server management finally becomes a reality. Larger organizations will truly appreciate this level of control and centralization, but you'll need Windows Server 8 pretty widely deployed to take advantage of it.

  3. Windows Server 8 is introducing what I call "foundation" features, such as the new file security model. Microsoft is finally acknowledging vastly outdated models and building in ones that are more modern and manageable. Getting Windows Server 8 in place will allow you to start reducing your overhead and centralizing both administration and auditing. Some of these new foundation features might not be ones you'll fully deploy yet, but you'll definitely want to start playing with them in isolated scenarios.

Have you looked at the Windows 8 Server preview, yet? It's available to TechNet members, and if you haven't installed it and given it a whirl… well, that's what virtualization is for! Is it something your organization will consider? What are you looking forward to… and what are you fearing about it?

Posted by Don Jones on 11/28/2011 at 1:14 PM


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