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Windows Server 2008 CTP Released

The CTP release makes it appear increasingly likely that the successor to Windows Server 2003 will be shipped early next year.

The next Community Technology Preview (CTP) for Windows Server 2008 has been released, making it appear increasingly likely that the successor to Windows Server 2003 will be shipped early next year.

The CTP release, announced on Microsoft's Windows Server Division blog, comes almost exactly two months after the beta 3 release of what was then called Longhorn Server. "The June 2007 CTP is another step toward Release Candidate and ultimately RTM [release to manufacturing], which remains on track to hit before the end of 2007," the blog author wrote.

Beta 3 was nearly feature complete, so there won't be a lot of new bells and whistles in the CTP. That doesn't mean it's bereft of interest however, because it does include the Web Server "core" role.

Server Core is a limited-functionality version of Windows Server 2008, tuned for specific functions such as DNS, file serving or virtualization. For the Web Server role, Internet Information Services (IIS) 7.0 will be installed, with only the components necessary. This leads to a smaller footprint, along with a much-reduced attack surface.

Microsoft's Bill Laing, general manager of the Windows Server Division, said in an earlier press release that the addition of IIS7 to the server core lineup was spurred by users. "This is a direct result of feedback we received from customers and partners. In fact, it was pretty much the No. 1 request."

The other changes for the CTP are bug fixes and performance enhancements, along with some minor UI tweaks, according to the blog entry.

Learning about the new server should be a little easier with the just-announced Windows Server 2008 Learning Portal. The portal contains links to information on upgrading certifications, as well as books, online training courses and more.

About the Author

Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Virtualization & Cloud Review. Follow him on Twitter @VirtReviewKeith.

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