Windows Server 2008 is the most recent release of Microsoft Windows’s server line of operating systems. Released on February 27, 2008, it is the successor to Windows Server 2003, released nearly five years earlier. Like Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008 is built on the Windows NT 6.0 kernel.
System requirements for Windows Server 2008 are as follows:
|Processor||1 GHz (x86) or 1.4 GHz (x64)||2 GHz or faster|
|Memory||512 MB RAM (may limit performance and some features)||2 GB RAM or higher
|Video adapter and monitor||Super VGA (800 x 600)||Super VGA (1024 x 768 ) or higher resolution|
|Hard drive disk free space||10 GB||40 GB or higherNote: Computers with more than 16GB of RAM will require more disk space for paging, hibernation, and dump files|
|Drives||DVD-ROM||DVD-ROM or better|
|Devices||Super VGA (800 x 600) or higher-resolution monitor, keyboard and mouse||Super VGA (1024 x 768 ) or higher-resolution monitor, keyboard and mouse|
|Others||Sound card, speakers, and headphones||Sound card, speakers, and headphones|
Windows Server 2008 is built from the same code base as Windows Vista; therefore, it shares much of the same architecture and functionality. Since the code base is common, it automatically comes with most of the technical, security, management and administrative features new to Windows Vista such as the rewritten networking stack (native IPv6, native wireless, speed and security improvements); improved image-based installation, deployment and recovery; improved diagnostics, monitoring, event logging and reporting tools; new security features such as Bitlocker and ASLR; improved Windows Firewall with secure default configuration; .NET Framework 3.0 technologies, specifically Windows Communication Foundation, Microsoft Message Queuing and Windows Workflow Foundation; and the core kernel, memory and file system improvements. Processors and memory devices are modeled as Plug and Play devices, to allow hot-plugging of these devices. This allows the system resources to be partitioned dynamically using Dynamic Hardware Partitioning; each partition having its own memory, processor and I/O host bridge devices independent of other partitions.
Windows Server 2008 is the first Windows operating system to ship with Windows PowerShell, Microsoft’s new extensible command line shell and task-based scripting technology. PowerShell is based on object-oriented programming and version 2.0 of the Microsoft .NET Framework and includes more than 120 system administration utilities, consistent syntax and naming conventions, and built-in capabilities to work with common management data such as the Windows Registry, certificate store, or Windows Management Instrumentation. PowerShell’s scripting language was specifically designed for IT administration, and can be used in place of cmd.exe and Windows Script Host.
In previous Windows versions, if the operating system detected corruption in the file system of an NTFS volume, it marked the volume “dirty”; to correct errors on the volume, it had to be taken offline. With self-healing NTFS, an NTFS worker thread is spawned in the background which performs a localized fix-up of damaged data structures, with only the corrupted files/folders remaining unavailable without locking out the entire volume and needing the server to be taken down.
Hyper-V is a hypervisor-based virtualization system, forming a core part of Microsoft’s virtualization strategy. It virtualizes servers on an operating system’s kernel layer. It can be thought of as partitioning a single physical server into multiple small computational partitions. Hyper-V will include the ability to act as a Xen virtualization hypervisor host allowing Xen-enabled guest operating systems to run virtualized. Hyper-V is not currently part of Windows Server 2008, but will ship within three months after Windows Server 2008 is released, as both a standalone product and as part of special “with Hyper-V” editions of Windows Server 2008. Both will only support the x86-64 architecture.
Most editions of Windows Server 2008 are available in x86-64 (64-bit) and x86 (32-bit) versions. Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-based Systems supports IA-64 processors. The IA-64 version is optimized for high workload scenarios like database servers and Line of Business (LOB) applications. As such it is not optimized for use as a file server or media server. Microsoft has announced that Windows Server 2008 is the last 32-bit Windows server operating system. Windows Server 2008 is available in the editions listed below, similar to Windows Server 2003.
- Windows Server 2008 Standard Edition (x86 and x64)
- Windows Server 2008 Enterprise Edition (x86 and x64)
- Windows Server 2008 Datacenter Edition (x86 and x64)
- Windows HPC Server 2008
- Windows Web Server 2008 (x86 and x64)
- Windows Storage Server 2008 (x86 and x64)
- Windows Small Business Server 2008 (Codenamed “Cougar”) (x64) for small businesses
- Windows Essential Business Server 2008 (Codenamed “Centro”) (x64) for medium-sized businesses
- Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-based Systems
For more details please visit the Microsoft website concerning Windows Server 2008.