Microsoft’s Windows Server 2012 Overview

Overview of Windows Server 2012 Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Overview

This operating system represents the latest generation of the Microsoft server family, and will be a successor to Windows Server 2008 R2.

Official catchphrase: ‘The power of many servers, the simplicity of one.
Unofficial motto: 'Server for the clouds'.

Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Topics


What’s in a Name?

I thought that the name Windows Server 8 would will be too easily confused with Windows 8 (the successor to Windows 7). Thus Windows Server 2012 seems a much better choice of name for Microsoft’s new flagship server. 

New Features of Windows Server 2012

Two areas that are likely to bring the greatest improvements are cloud computing and Hyper-V. For example, Hyper-V Replica that will enable administrators to replicate virtual machines immediately, on a schedule. Also, the next generation of Hyper-V will support more processors – at least 16.

I was surprised to see that this latest Microsoft server has the Metro UI that I associate with Windows 8.  Less of a surprise was the extra PowerShell 3.0 modules with their raft of new cmdlet-style functions.

Virtual Live Migration

Live migrate server from any server to any server, there is no shared storage, no clustering, just an Ethernet cable.

It works by copying virtual disks and taking snapshots of differencing disk files (.AVHD)

Microsoft Windows Server 8 Overview

Get your free Hyper-V monitor for VMs.

Active Directory Improvements

Active Directory has remained more or less the same since 2000, and thus will get a timely upgrade / make-over in Windows Server 2012.

Windows Server 2008 R2 brought a glimpse of Microsoft’s thinking as to what will be in the next server, for example, dynamic memory and desktop virtualization.

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SolarWinds’ Network Performance Monitor will help you discover what’s happening on your network.  This utility will also guide you through troubleshooting; the dashboard will indicate whether the root cause is a broken link, faulty equipment or resource overload.

Perhaps the NPM’s best feature is the way it suggests solutions to network problems.  Its second best feature is the ability to monitor the health of individual VMware virtual machines.  If you are interested in troubleshooting, and creating network maps, then I recommend that you give this Network Performance Monitor a try.

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What's New in DHCP for Server 2012?

Each new generation Windows server brings yet more options for DHCP configuration, these are the highlights of new DHCP features in Windows Server 2012.

Chkdsk – Is Much Faster

I love the idea of self-healing, and Windows Server 2012’s NTFS has the improved ability to recover from disk errors. Above all, Chkdsk completes analysis much more quickly than Server 2008 and its predecessors.

Install Windows Server 2012

Here is the beta version.

Microsoft Server 2012 Cloud Computing

Optimise for businesses of all sizes, from single servers to supporting multi-nationals.

  • Beyond Virtualization – Services
  • Networking technologies – Data Center –> Cloud
  • Hyper-V
  • Scalability Manageability, Mobility
  • 32 virtual processors
  • 512 GB per virtual machine
  • 16 TB per virtual disk
  • Virtual SAN to
  • Fibre channel adapter.

SolarWinds VM to Cloud Calculator »

Virtual Live Migration Holy Grail

Server Core is the default.
If you need it make is secure, if it's not needed it's not there. Core Server is not as popular as is should be. Administrators choice seems to be for full server. My message is get it right, make it work or else face a re-install.

Deployment Options

How to Control Annoying Windows Server 2012 Features.

It's possible to disable the UAC just as you could in Windows Server 2008.  I will also show you how to turn Off IE Enhanced Security.  Many administrator's find the Shutdown Event Tracker annoying and disable this dialog box.

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Encouraging computers to sleep when they’re not in use is a great idea – until you are away from your desk and need a file on that remote sleeping machine!

WOL also has business uses for example, rousing machines so that they can have update patches applied.  My real reason for recommending you download this free tool is because it’s so much fun sending those ‘Magic Packets’. Give WOL a try – it’s free.

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Windows Server 2012 Milestones

  • RTM – Autumn 2012
  • Name announced as Windows Server 2012 – May 2012
  • Windows Server 8 Beta – February 2012
  • BUILD called Windows 8 – September 2011
  • Milestone 3 – Spring 2011 (Build 7959)
  • Milestone 1 – Autumn 2010 (Build 7850)


Versions of Microsoft Windows Server I Have Been Involved With:

  • Windows Server 2012
  • Windows Server 2008 (and R2)
  • Windows Server 2003 (and R2)
  • Windows Server 2000
  • Windows NT 4.0

Summary of  Microsoft Windows Server 2012

Four years is still a long time in computing, there is only so much you can do with service packs or R2 for Server 2008. Therefore, run this server equivalent of Windows 8 client through its paces.

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Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Topics

Windows Server 2012 Home   • Disable UAC Windows Server 2012   • Server 2012 Chkdsk Utility

Install Windows Server 2012   • PowerShell Add-WindowsFeature   • Network Performance Monitor

Shutdown Windows Server 2012   • Disable Shutdown Event Tracker Server 2012