Windows 10 Server has been developing its technology each year since the early 1990s. Its purpose was primarily for businesses when it was first introduced to the public.
However, newer versions are already out in the market as of the date, such as Windows Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS). There are still other businesses that prefer to use the older versions of Windows servers.
Hold on tight as we take you on a brief tour to Microsoft’s Windows server and learn more about why many businesses still prefer its older version.
Let’s briefly discuss what Windows Server really is and how it supports your business daily.
Windows Server is Microsoft’s leading server when it comes to operating systems. It can be hardware or a computer program (software) that computers can access through networking. Microsoft has released many Windows Server versions over the years, is rivaled with IBM, Ubuntu Linux. Oracle, among others.
As shown on the list below are Windows Servers versions. It is from the different windows server editions until the latest version release, which is Windows Server 2019. The Windows server monitoring tool like SolarWinds® Server & Application Monitor will guide you to get the best of your server performance.
- Windows Server 2000
- Windows Server 2003
- Windows Server 2003 R2
- Windows Server 2008
- Windows Server 2008 R2
- Windows Server 2012
- Windows Server 2012 R2
- Windows Server 2016
- Windows Server 2019
Complete Guide Of Windows Server And Its Differences
What are Windows NT Servers
Microsoft brands the Windows NT Server as “NT,” an abbreviation for “New Technology”. The following are the different NT version had of the Operating system
- Windows NT 3.1. The Windows NT server’s first release is Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1, which came into two formats: one for workstations and the other is for servers. Released in 1993 as a 32-bit system and relies on Disk Operating System (DOS). Thus, this became the start of Windows Server’s generation.
- Windows NT 3.5. This is the next version of the server released in 1994 with enhanced functionality supporting TCP/IP and Winsock interconnectivity with both Unix systems and Novell NetWare, which were the standards. An outlook that was crucial for Windows NT Server to be competitive in the market industry.
- Windows NT 3.51. This release was fine-tuned by Microsoft, increasing the required memory and aligned with the regular operating system release of Windows 95. Optimizing its OS and NetWare to provide improvements to make the system more stable. It’s the ability to manage the software licenses on client computers.
- Windows NT 4.0. Microsoft expanded the protocol by borrowing the Windows 95 interface for this OS release. One of the Windows NT 4.0 releases’ significant components was the Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS). Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS). It is a complementary addition thus became the most popular web management software in the world. It was then followed by Apache HTTP Server, the leading web server software, until 2018. Microsoft has enhanced its protocol capabilities that enable network resources available for non-Microsoft machines.
Windows Server Versions
In 2000, Microsoft released Windows Server 2000, highlighting Active Directory as its significance to modern systems. Until these present days, server versions are branded based on the year for each version released.
- Windows Server 2000. It provides an initial function that has many features of the operating system still in use today. Its main features included:
- XML support
- Active Server Pages creation
- Active Directory use for user authentication
- Windows Server 2003. The release of Windows Server 2003 has lessened the need to reboot the system by enhancing its installing updates and patches ability without restarting. Microsoft provided updates to the security features with this server version and included the .NET framework in the server operating system.
- Windows Server 2003 R2. In 2005, Windows Server 2003 R2 – or Release 2 – came out as a free upgrade to the Windows Server 2003 edition. Since companies need to buy a new Windows server license, R2’s Client Access Licenses (CALs) has eliminated the need to upgrade those licenses from the previous server version.
- Windows Server 2008. With the Windows Server 2008, Active Directory has been improved and changed the interaction between the operating system’s software support features and network services.
A big gain came with Microsoft’s Hyper-V system. This is a virtualization product that allowed Windows Server users to create virtual machines (VMs). Other new utilities was bundled with new software administration tools called Event Viewer and Server Manager. These gave administrators more control over essential server activities.
Server Core was the bare-bones version of the software, and it allowed command-line access. It can run even without the familiar GUI Desktop of the Windows environment. It has existing command-line settings, a welcome change for many administrators who used Unix and Linux Systems.
- Windows Server 2008 R2. It was available in 2009; Windows Server 2008 R2 version involved the transition from being on Windows Vista to Windows 7. It started the 64-bit environment. It has new services such as Remote Desktop Services or RDS that are repackaged with Terminal Services. DirectAccess and BranchCache were introduced to provide better server access to users in remote locations.
- Windows Server 2012. In 2012, Microsoft made a newer upgrade paving its way for an all out win the “Cloud OS.” These updates focused on integrating Hyper-V functionality integrating both local hosts and onsite delivery, allowing Hyper-V architecture to be easily used with other new cloud technologies.
- Windows Server 2012 R2. Windows Server 2012 R2 was released as a revision to the prior release, and the composition of the operating system saw the use of PowerShell. This update included rewrites to both security protocols and network services.
- Windows Server 2016. The next release was bundled with Windows Server 2016, which came with a new server option called the Nano Server. This scaled-down server implementation has limited interfaces, making it secure from attacks. Along with its release was the Network Controller. An updated version of a console program allows administrators to manage all network devices physically or virtually.
- Windows Server 2019. Before the release of Windows Server version 20H2, Windows Server is the Windows Server 2019 bundled with important new features meeting the growing networking requirements:
- GUI interface
- Hyper-converged Infrastructure (HCI)
- Leaner Server Core
- Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection
- Windows Admin Center
- Windows Subsystem for Linux
Windows Server Life Cycle
The lifecycle of Windows Server depends on how long Microsoft will support a version of the operating system. But most Microsoft products are expected to have a complete life cycle of 10 years with average support lasting five years and additional extended support on another five. Moreover, the support periods for Windows Server editions are shorter, and there is no known standard duration. The support period may last for two to three years, but to make sure, you can check for exact life cycle periods for your specific version.
Windows Server and its evolution have gone way too far now, yet some of these preceding servers are still preferred by some businessmen because of Microsoft’s Group Policy Objects (GPO). Whether you want to remain in your old Windows server or upgrade it to the latest version, decide what’s best for you and your business.
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