Microsoft Windows Server 2016
Technical Feature
Comparison Guide
Windows Server 2016, Windows Server 2012 R2,
and Windows Server 2008 R2
Contents
How to use this comparison guide ............................................................................................................................................................................................... 2
Windows Server 2016 – The cloud-ready operating system .............................................................................................................................................. 2
Windows Server 2016 editions ....................................................................................................................................................................................................... 3
Azure Hybrid Use Benefit .................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 4
Security ..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 4
Identity ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................10
Compute ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................15
Storage ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................20
Networking ...........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................25
Virtualization ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................34
High availability ..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................43
Management and automation ......................................................................................................................................................................................................46
Remote Desktop Services (RDS)...................................................................................................................................................................................................51
Application development ...............................................................................................................................................................................................................54
Take the next step. Learn more at http://www.microsoft.com/WindowsServer2016
© 2016 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. This document is for informational purposes only. Microsoft makes no warranties express or implied, with respect to the
information presented here.
How to use this comparison guide
This feature comparison guide compares selected features of Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012 R2, and
Windows Server 2016. Its goal is to help customers understand the differences between the version they are running today and
the latest version available from Microsoft.
The comparison table includes comments about each feature, as well as notation about how well each feature is supported in
each release. The legend for this notation is given in the table below.
Level of feature support
Feature name
Not
Supported
Partially
Supported
Fully
Supported
Feature description
Windows Server 2016 – The cloud-ready operating system
Windows Server 2016 is the cloud-ready operating system that delivers new layers of security and Azure-inspired innovation for
the applications and infrastructure that power your business. Increase security and reduce business risk with multiple layers of
protection built into the operating system. Evolve your datacenter to save money and gain flexibility with software-defined
datacenter technologies inspired by Microsoft Azure. Innovate faster with an application platform optimized for the applications
you run today as well as the cloud-native apps of tomorrow.
Built-in security
Windows Server 2016 includes built-in breach resistance to help thwart attacks on your systems and meet compliance goals. Even
if someone finds a way into your environment, the layers of security built into Windows Server 2016 limit the damage they can
cause and help detect suspicious activity.
•
Help prevent risks associated with compromised administrative credentials. Use new privileged identity management
features to limit administrative access by enabling “just enough” and “just-in-time” administration capabilities. Use
Credential Guard to prevent administrative credentials from being stolen by Pass-the-Hash attacks.
•
Protect your virtual machines using the unique Shielded Virtual Machine feature. A shielded VM is encrypted using
BitLocker and can only run on approved hosts.
•
Protect against unknown vulnerabilities by ensuring only permitted binaries are executed using additional security
features such as Control Flow Guard and Device Guard as well as Windows Defender optimized for server roles.
•
Use Hyper-V containers for a unique additional layer of isolation for containerized applications.
Software-defined infrastructure
Datacenter operations are struggling to reduce costs while handling more data traffic. New applications stretch the operational
fabric and create infrastructure backlogs that can slow business. Windows Server 2016 delivers a more flexible and cost-efficient
operating system for datacenters, using software-defined compute, storage, and network virtualization features inspired by Azure.
Resilient compute
Run your datacenter with a highly automated, resilient, virtualized server operating system.
•
Reduce your datacenter footprint, increase availability, and reduce resource usage with “just enough” OS using the Nano
Server installation option, with an image that is 25x smaller than the Windows Server 2016 Server with Desktop
Experience installation option.
•
Upgrade infrastructure clusters to Windows Server 2016 with zero downtime for your Hyper-V or Scale-out file server
workloads, and without requiring new hardware, using Mixed OS Mode cluster upgrades.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 2
•
•
•
•
Increase application availability with improved cluster resiliency to transient failures in network and storage.
Automate server management with PowerShell 5.1 and Desired State Configuration.
Manage Windows servers from anywhere using the new web-based GUI – Server management tools.
Deploy applications on multiple operating systems with best-in-class support for Linux on Hyper-V.
Reduced-cost storage
Windows Server 2016 includes expanded capabilities in software-defined storage with an emphasis on resilience, reduced cost,
and increased control.
•
Build highly available and scalable software-defined storage solutions at a fraction of the cost of SAN or NAS. Storage
Spaces Direct uses standard servers with local storage to create converged or hyper-converged storage architectures.
•
Create affordable business continuity and disaster recovery among datacenters with Storage Replica synchronous
storage replication.
•
Ensure application users have priority access to storage resources using Quality-of-Service features.
Agile networking
Windows Server 2016 delivers key networking features inspired by technology in the Azure datacenters to support agility,
dynamic security, and hybrid flexibility in your datacenter.
•
Deploy and manage workloads with different types of networking policies (isolation, Quality of Service, security, load
balancing, switching, routing, gateway, DNS, etc.) across their entire lifecycle in a matter of seconds using a scalable
Network Controller.
•
Dynamically segment your network based on workload needs using a distributed firewall and network security groups to
apply NIC and subnet in enforcement by routing or mirroring traffic to virtualized firewall appliances for even greater
levels of security.
•
Take control of your hybrid workloads and move them across servers, racks, and clouds using standards-based VXLAN
and NVGRE overlay networks and multi-tenanted, hybrid SDN gateways.
•
Optimize cost/performance by converging RDMA storage traffic and tenant workload traffic on the same teamed NICs,
thereby driving down cost while providing performance and Quality of Service (QoS) at 40G and beyond.
Cloud-ready application platform
Windows Server 2016 delivers new ways to deploy and run your applications – whether on-premises, in a hybrid environment, or
in Microsoft Azure – using capabilities such as Windows containers and the lightweight Nano Server installation option.
•
Help protect and enhance apps by taking advantage of Windows Server fabric.
•
Move your traditional applications into a modern DevOps environment using containers with little or no code changes.
Windows Server containers bring the agility and density of containers to the Windows ecosystem, enabling agile
application development and management. Use Hyper-V containers for a unique additional level of isolation for
containerized applications without any changes to the container image. Use Active Directory identity mapped to your
containers.
•
Microsoft, Docker Inc. and the Docker Community have partnered to provide the Docker engine with support for new
container technologies in Windows Server 2016.
•
Build cloud-native and hybrid apps using containers and microservices architectures.
•
Use the lightweight Nano Server installation option for the agility and flexibility today’s application developers need. It’s
the perfect option for running applications from containers or working with microservices.
•
Run traditional first-party applications such as SQL Server 2016 with best-in-class performance, security and availability.
Windows Server 2016 editions
Windows Server 2016 editions include:
•
Datacenter: This edition delivers significant value for customers who need unlimited virtualization along with powerful
new features including Shielded Virtual Machines, software-defined storage and software-defined networking.
•
Standard: This edition is ideal for customers who need limited virtualization but require a robust, general purpose server
operating system.
•
Essentials: This edition is designed for small-to-medium sized customers with 25-50 users.
Windows Server 2016 will not have a Foundation edition, but current Foundation customers will find the Essentials edition to be a
close match for their requirements.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 3
For the Standard and Datacenter editions, there are three installation options:
•
•
•
Server Core: The Server Core installation option removes the client UI from the server, providing an installation that runs
the majority of the roles and features on a lighter install. Server Core does not include MMC or Server Manager, which
can be used remotely, but does include limited local graphical tools such as Task Manager as well as PowerShell for local
or remote management.
Nano Server: The Nano Server installation option provides an ideal lightweight operating system to run “cloud-native”
applications based on containers and micro-services. It can also be used to run an agile and cost-effective datacenter
host with a dramatically smaller OS footprint. Because it is a headless installation of the Windows Server, management is
done remotely via PowerShell Core, the web-based Server management tools,, or existing remote management tools
such as MMC.
Server with Desktop Experience: The Server with Desktop Experience installation option provides an ideal user
experience for those that need to run an app that requires local UI or for Remote Desktop Services Host. This option has
the full Windows client shell and experience, consistent with Windows 10 Anniversary edition Long Term Servicing
Branch (LTSB), with the server Microsoft Management Console (MMC) and Server management tools available locally on
the server.
Azure Hybrid Use Benefit
When you are ready to transition workloads to the public cloud, you can leverage your existing investment in Windows Server.
The Azure Hybrid Use Benefit lets you bring your on-premises Windows Server license with Software Assurance to Azure. Rather
than paying the full price for a new Windows Server virtual machine, you will only pay the base compute rate. More information
can be found at http://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/hybrid-use-benefit/.
Security
Windows Server 2016 delivers layers of protection that help address emerging threats and meet your compliance needs, making
Windows Server 2016 an active participant in your security defenses. These include the new Shielded Virtual Machine feature that
protects VMs from attacks and compromised administrators in the underlying fabric, extensive threat resistance components built
into the Windows Server 2016 operating system and enhanced auditing events that will help security systems detect malicious
activity.
Windows Server
Shielded Virtual Machines
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Shielded Virtual Machines and Guarded Fabric help provide hosting service providers and private cloud operators the
ability to offer their tenants a hosted environment where protection of tenant virtual machine data is strengthened against
threats from compromised storage, network and host administrators, and malware. For example: If you are running your
domain controllers or sensitive SQL databases as a virtual machine, you would want to shield them from fabric attacks.
A Shielded Virtual Machine is a generation 2 VM (supports Windows Server 2012 and later) that has a virtual TPM, is
encrypted using BitLocker and can only run on healthy and approved hosts in the fabric. You can configure to run a
Shielded Virtual Machine on any Hyper-V host. For the highest levels of assurance, the host hardware requires TPM 2.0 (or
later) and UEFI 2.3.1 (or later).
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 4
Windows Server
Credential Guard
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Credential Guard helps prevent pass the hash attacks by utilizing virtualization-based security to credential artifacts from
administrators.. Credential Guard offers better protection against advanced persistent threats by protecting credentials on
the system from being stolen by a compromised administrator or malware.
Credential Guard can also be enabled on Remote Desktop Services servers and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure so that the
credentials for users connecting to their sessions are protected.
Windows Server
Remote Credential Guard
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Remote Credential Guard helps you protect your credentials over a Remote Desktop connection by redirecting the
Kerberos requests back to the device that's requesting the connection. It also provides single sign on experiences for
Remote Desktop sessions. If the target device is compromised, your credentials are not exposed because both credential
and credential derivatives are never sent to the target device.
Windows Server
Device Guard
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Device Guard uses Virtualization Based Security to ensure that only allowed binaries can be run on the system. If the app
or driver isn’t trusted, it can’t run.
Device Guard can also help protect Remote Desktop Services to lock down what applications can run within the user
sessions.
Windows Server
AppLocker
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
AppLocker can help you protect the digital assets within your organization, reduce the threat of malicious software being
introduced into your environment, and improve the management of application control and the maintenance of
application control policies. AppLocker and Device Guard can be used in tandem to provide a wide set of software
restriction policies that meets your operational needs.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 5
Windows Server
Control Flow Guard
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Control Flow Guard (CFG) protects against an attacker corrupting the control flow of a process by changing the addresses
of indirect calls. Windows user mode components are created with Control Flow Guard built-in and vendors can also
include Control Flow Guard in their binaries using Visual Studio 2015.
Windows Defender: included
antimalware
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Defender is malware protection that actively protects Windows Server 2016 against known malware and can
regularly update antimalware definitions through Windows Update. Windows Defender is optimized to run on Windows
Server supporting the various server roles and is integrated with PowerShell for malware scanning.
Distributed firewall and
microsegmentation
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The distributed firewall is a network layer, 5-tuple (protocol, source and destination port numbers, source and destination
IP addresses), stateful, multi-tenant firewall. When deployed and offered as a service by the service provider, tenant
administrators can install and configure firewall policies to help protect their virtual networks from unwanted traffic
originating from Internet and intranet networks—this process is known as microsegmentation.
Windows Server
Host Guardian Service
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Host Guardian Service is a new role in Windows Server 2016 that enables Shielded Virtual Machines and Guarded Fabric.
Guarded Fabric: Shielded VMs can only run on Guarded hosts. These hosts need to pass an attestation check to make
sure they are locked down and comply with the policy that enables Shielded VMs to run on them. This functionality is
implemented through a Host Guardian Service deployed in the environment which will store the keys required for
approved Hyper-V hosts that can prove their health to run Shielded VMs.
Device Health Attestation
Service
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
For Windows 10-based devices, Microsoft introduces a new public API that will allow Mobile Device Management (MDM)
software to access a remote attestation service called Windows Health Attestation Service. A health attestation result, in
addition to other elements, can be used to allow or deny access to networks, apps, or services, based on whether devices
prove to be healthy.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 6
Privileged Access: Just Enough
Administration
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Administrators should only be able to perform their role and nothing more. For example: A file server administrator can
restart services, but should not be able to browse the data on the server.
Just Enough Administration (JEA) provides a role based access platform through PowerShell. It allows specific users to
perform specific adminstrative tasks on servers without giving them administrator rights.
JEA is built into Windows Server 2016 and you can also use WMF 5.0 to take advantage of JEA on Windows Server 2008
R2 and higher.
Privileged Access: Just-in-Time
Administration
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The concept of Just-in-Time Administration helps transform administration privileges from perpetual administration to
time-based administration. When a user needs to be an administrator, they go through a workflow that is fully audited
and provides them with administration privilege for a limited time by adding them to a time-based security group and
automatically removing them after that period of time has passed.
The deployment of Just-in-Time Administration includes creating an isolated administration forest, where the controlled
administrator accounts will be managed.
Windows Server
Virtualization Based Security
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtualization Based Security (VBS) is a new protected environment that provides isolation from the running operating
system so that secrets and control can be protected from compromised administrators or malware. VBS is used by Device
Guard to protect kernel code, Credential Guard for credential isolation and Shielded VMs for the virtual TPM
implementation.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 7
Virtual TPM: Trusted Platform
Module
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Implemented in Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V, a Generation 2 virtual machine (Windows Server 2012 and later) can now
have its own Virtual TPM so that it can use it as a secure crypto-processor chip. The virtual TPM is a new synthetic device
that provides TPM 2.0 functionality.
Virtual TPM does not require a physical TPM to be available on the Hyper-V host, and its state is tied to the VM itself
rather than the physical host it was first created on so that it can move with the VM. VMs with a virtual TPM can run on a
guarded fabric.
The Shielded VM functionality uses the Virtual TPM for BitLocker encryption.
Client machines running on Virtual Desktop Infrastructure can now use a vTPM as well.
Windows Server
BitLocker encryption
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows BitLocker drive encryption provides better data protection for your computer, by encrypting all data stored on
the Windows operating system volume and/or data drives.
Windows Server
SMB 3.1.1 security improvements
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Security improvements to SMB 3.1.1 include pre-authentication integrity and SMB encryption improvements.
Pre-authentication integrity provides improved protection from a man-in-the-middle attacker tampering with SMB’s
connection establishment and authentication messages. Pre-Auth integrity verifies all the “negotiate” and “session setup”
exchanges used by SMB with a strong cryptographic hash (SHA-512). If your client and your server establish an SMB 3.1.1
session, you can be sure that no one has tampered with the connection and session properties.
SMB 3.1.1 offers a mechanism to negotiate the crypto algorithm per connection, with options for AES-128-CCM and AES128-GCM.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 8
Windows Server
Dynamic Access Control
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Apply data governance across your file servers to control who can access information and to audit who has accessed
information. Dynamic Access Control lets you:
•
Identify data by using automatic and manual classification of files. For example, you could tag data in file servers
across the organization.
•
Control access to files by applying safety net policies that use central access policies. For example, you could
define who can access health information within the organization.
•
Audit access to files by using central audit policies for compliance reporting and forensic analysis. For example,
you could identify who accessed highly sensitive information.
•
Apply Rights Management Services (RMS) protection by using automatic RMS encryption for sensitive Microsoft
Office documents. For example, you could configure RMS to encrypt all documents that contain Health Insurance
Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) information.
Windows Server
AD Rights Management Services
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
AD Rights Management provides information protection for your sensitive information. By using Active Directory Rights
Management Services (AD RMS) and the AD RMS client, you can augment an organization's security strategy by
protecting information through persistent usage policies, which remain with the information, no matter where it is moved.
You can use AD RMS to help prevent sensitive information—such as financial reports, product specifications, customer
data, and confidential e-mail messages—from intentionally or accidentally getting into the wrong hands.
Azure Rights Management
Connector
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Azure Rights Management (RMS) connector lets you quickly enable existing on-premises servers to use their Information
Rights Management (IRM) functionality with the cloud-based Microsoft Rights Management service (Azure RMS).
Enhanced auditing for threat
detection
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Based on the Microsoft internal security operation center, Windows Server 2016 includes targeted auditing to better
detect malicious behavior. These include auditing access to kernel and sensitive processes as well as new data in the logon
events. These events can then be streamed to threat detection systems such as the Microsoft Operations Management
Suite to alert on malicious behavior.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 9
Windows Server
PowerShell 5.1 security features
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
There are several new security features included in PowerShell 5.1. These include: Script block logging, Antimalware
Integration, Constrained PowerShell and transcript logging.
PowerShell 5.1 is also available for install on previous operating systems starting from Windows Server 2008 R2 and on.
Identity
Identity is the new control plane to secure access to on-premises and cloud resources. It centralizes your ability to control user
and administrative privileges, both of which are very important when it comes to protecting your data and applications from
malicious attack. At the same time, our users are more mobile than ever, and need access to computing resources from
anywhere.
Active Directory Domain Services
Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) stores directory data and manages communication between users and domains,
including user logon processes, authentication, and directory searches. An Active Directory domain controller is a server that is
running AD DS.
Windows Server
New domain services capabilities
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
New in Windows Server 2016:
•
Privileged Access Management. This capability, which allows organizations to provide time-limited access to
administrator accounts, is described in the Security section of this document.
•
Azure Active Directory Join. There are enhanced identity experiences when devices are joined to Azure Active
Directory. These include applying Modern settings to corporate-owned workstations, such as access to the Windows
Store with corporate credentials, live tile and notification settings roaming, and backup/restore.
•
Microsoft Passport. Active Directory Domain Services now supports desktop login from Windows 10 domain joined
devices with Microsoft Passport. Microsoft Passport offers stronger authentication than password authentication with
device specific and TPM protected credentials.
Active Directory Federation Services
Active Directory Federation Services (AD FS) is a standards-based service that allows the secure sharing of identity information
between trusted business partners (known as a federation) across an extranet. The service builds on the extensive AD FS
capabilities available in the Windows Server 2012 R2 timeframe. Key enhancements to AD FS in Windows Server 2016 include
better sign-on experiences, smoother upgrade and management processes, conditional access, and a wider array of strong
authentication options, are described in the topics that follow.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 10
Better sign-on to Azure AD and
Office 365
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
One of the most common usage scenarios for AD FS continues to be providing sign-on to Office 365 and other Azure AD
based applications using your on-premises Active Directory credentials.
AD FS extends hybrid identity by providing support for authentication based on any LDAP v3 compliant directory, not just
Active Directory. This allows you to enable sign in to AD FS resources from:
• Any LDAP v3 compliant directory including AD LDS and third party directories.
• Un-trusted or partially trusted Active Directory domains and forests.
Support for LDAP v3 directories is done by modeling each LDAP directory as a “local” claim that providers trust. This
enables the following admin capabilities:
• Restrict the scope of the directory based on OU.
• Map individual attributes to AD FS claims, including login ID.
• Map login suffixes to individual LDAP directories.
• Augment claims for users after authentication by modifying claim rules.
Windows Server
Improved sign-on experience
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
AD FS now allows for customization of the sign-on experience. This is especially applicable to organizations that host
applications for a number of different customers or brands. With Windows Server 2016, you can customize not only the
messages, but images, logo and web theme per application. Additionally, you can create new, custom web themes and
apply these per relying party.
Users on Windows 10 devices and computers will be able to access applications without having to provide additional
credentials, just based on their desktop login, even over the extranet.
Windows Server
Strong authentication options
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
AD FS in Windows Server 2016 provides more ways to authenticate different types of identities and devices. In addition to
the traditional Active Directory based logon options (and new LDAP directory support), you can now configure device
authentication or Azure MFA as either primary or secondary authentication methods.
Using either the device or Azure Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) methods, you can create a way for managed,
compliant, or domain joined devices to authenticate without the need to supply a password, even from the extranet.
In addition to seamless single sign-on based on desktop login, Windows 10 users can sign-on to AD FS applications based
on Microsoft Passport credentials, for a more secure and seamless way of authenticating both users and devices.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 11
Simpler upgrade, deployment,
and management
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Previously, migrating to a new version of AD FS required exporting configuration from the old farm and importing to a
brand new, parallel farm. Now, moving from AD FS on Windows Server 2012 R2 to AD FS on Windows Server 2016 has
gotten much easier. The migration can occur like this:
•
Add a new Windows Server 2016 server to a Windows Server 2012 R2 farm, and the farm will act at the Windows
Server 2012 R2 farm behavior level, so it looks and behaves just like a Windows Server 2012 R2 farm.
•
Add new Windows Server 2016 servers to the farm, verify the functionality and remove the older servers from the
load balancer.
•
Once all farm nodes are running Windows Server 2016, you are ready to upgrade the farm behavior level to 2016
and begin using the new features.
AD FS in Windows Server 2016, policies are easier to configure with wizard-based management that allows you to avoid
writing claim rules even for conditional access policies. The new access control policy templates enable the following new
scenarios and benefits:
•
Templates to simplify applying similar policies across multiple applications.
•
Parameterized policies to support assigning different values for access control (e.g. Security Group).
•
Simpler UI with additional support for many new conditions.
•
Conditional Predicates (Security groups, networks, device trust level, require MFA).
AD FS for Windows Server 2016 introduces the ability to have separation between server administrators and AD FS
service administrators. This means that there is no longer a requirement for the AD FS administrator to be a local server
administrator.
In AD FS for Windows Server 2016, it is much easier to consume and manage audit data. The number of audits has been
reduced from an average of 80 per logon to 3, and the new audits have been schematized.
In AD FS on Windows Server you can now configure user certificate authentication on standard port 443.
Windows Server
Conditional access
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
AD FS in Windows Server 2016 builds on our previous device registration capabilities by enabling new scenarios, working
with Azure AD, to require compliant devices and either restrict or require multiple factors of authentication, based on
management or compliance status.
Azure AD and Intune based conditional access policies enable scenarios and benefits such as:
•
Enable Access only from devices that are managed and/or compliant.
•
Restrict access to corporate “joined” PCs (including managed devices and domain joined PCs).
•
Require multi factor authentication for computers that are not domain joined and devices that are not compliant.
AD FS in Windows Server 2016 can consume the computer or device compliance status, so that you can apply the same
policies to your on-premises resources as you do for the cloud.
Compliance is re-evaluated when device attributes change, so that you can always ensure policies are being enforced.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 12
Seamless sign-on from Windows
10 and Microsoft Passport
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Domain Join in Windows 10 has been enhanced to provide integration with Azure AD, as well as stronger and more
seamless Microsoft Passport based authentication. This provides the following benefits after being connected to Azure AD:
•
SSO (single-sign-on) to Azure AD resources from anywhere.
•
Strong authentication and convenient sign-in with Microsoft Passport and Windows Hello.
AD FS in Windows Server 2016 provides the ability to extend the above benefits and device policies to on-premises
resources protected by AD FS.
Windows Server
Developer focus
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
AD FS for Windows Server 2016 builds upon the Oauth protocol support to enable the most current and industry
standard-based authentication flows among web apps, web APIs, browser and native client-based apps. In Windows
Server 2016, the following additional protocols and features are supported:
•
OpenId Connect support.
•
Additional Oauth authorization code grant types.
o Implicit flow (for single page applications).
o Resource Owner password (for scripting apps).
•
Oauth confidential clients (clients capable of maintaining their own secret, such as app or service running on web
server)
•
Oauth confidential client authentication methods:
o Symmetric (shared secret / password).
o Asymmetric keys.
o Windows Integrated Authentication (WIA).
•
Support for “on behalf of” flows as an extension to basic Oauth support.
Registering modern applications has also become simpler using AD FS in Windows Server 2016. Now instead of using
PowerShell to create a client object, modeling the web API as an RP, and creating all of the authorization rules, you can
use the new Application Group wizard.
Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services (AD LDS)
AD LDS is a Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) directory service that provides flexible support for directory-enabled
applications, without the dependencies that are required for Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS). AD LDS provides much of
the same functionality as AD DS, but it does not require the deployment of domains or domain controllers.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 13
Active Directory Lightweight
Directory Services
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
There are no significant enhancements to AD LDS in Windows Server 2016.
Existing capabilities that continue to be offered in AD LDS include:
•
Role support for Server Core installations.
•
Ability to back up and restore databases to an existing AD LDS instance.
•
Ability to concurrently run multiple instances of AD LDS on a single computer with an independently managed
schema for each AD LDS instance.
Web Application Proxy
The Web Application Proxy is a Windows Server service that allows for secure publishing of internal resources to users on the
Internet.
Windows Server
Web Application Proxy
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Web Application Proxy supports new features including pre-authentication support with AD FS for HTTP Basic applications
such as Exchange Active Sync. Additionally, certificate authentication is now supported.
The following new features build on the existing application publishing capabilities found in the Web Application Proxy:
Pre-authentication for HTTP basic application publishing: HTTP Basic is the authorization protocol used by many
protocols, including ActiveSync, to connect rich clients, including smartphones, with your Exchange mailbox. Web
Application Proxy traditionally interacts with AD FS using redirections which is not supported on ActiveSync clients.
This new version of Web Application Proxy provides support to publish an app using HTTP basic by enabling the HTTP app
to receive a non-claims relying party trust for the application to the Federation Service. For more information on HTTP
basic publishing, see Publishing Applications using AD FS Pre-authentication
•
Wildcard Domain publishing of applications: To support scenarios such as SharePoint 2013, the external URL for
the application can now include a wildcard to enable you to publish multiple applications from within a specific
domain, for example, https://*.sp-apps.contoso.com. This will simplify publishing of SharePoint apps.
•
HTTP to HTTPS redirection: In order to make sure your users can access your app, even if they neglect to type
HTTPS in the URL, Web Application Proxy now supports HTTP to HTTPS redirection.
•
Publishing of Remote Desktop Gateway Apps: For more information on RDG in Web Application Proxy, see
Publishing Applications with SharePoint, Exchange and RDG
•
New debug log: for better troubleshooting and improved service log for complete audit trail and improved error
handling. For more information on troubleshooting, see Troubleshooting Web Application Proxy
•
Administration Console UI improvements
•
Propagation of client IP address to backend applications
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 14
Compute
In this section, the various aspects of server computing are discussed, such as Nano Server and Linux capabilities.
Nano Server
Nano Server is a new headless, 64-bit only installation option that installs “just enough OS,” resulting in a dramatically smaller
footprint that results in more uptime and a smaller attack surface. Users can choose to add server roles as needed, including
Hyper-V, scale-out file server, DNS Server and IIS server roles. User can also choose to install features, including container
support, Defender, Failover Clustering, Desired State Configuration (DSC), and Shielded Virtual Machine support. Nano Server can
be remotely managed via PowerShell, Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-ins, or the new Server management tools
cloud service.
Nano Server is a deep rethink of server architecture. The result is a new lean cloud host and application development platform
that’s a fraction of the size of Server Core. Its small size helps to reduce security attack risks, achieves quicker and fewer reboots,
and significantly reduces deployment time and resource consumption. Nano Server is informed directly by our learnings from
building and managing some of the world’s largest hyper-scale cloud environments.
Nano Server is focused on two scenarios that demand a smaller footprint OS:
•
Born-in-the-cloud applications: support for multiple programming languages and runtimes (e.g. C#, Java, .NET Core,
Node.js, Python, etc.) running in containers, virtual machines, or on physical servers.
•
Microsoft Cloud Platform infrastructure: support for compute hosts running Hyper-V and storage hosts running scaleout file server, either clustered or standalone.
Nano Server is ideal for scenarios such as:
•
A “compute” host for Hyper-V virtual machines, Windows Server containers, and Hyper-V containers either in clusters or
as standalone servers.
•
A storage host for scale-out file server.
•
A DNS server
•
A web server running Internet Information Services (IIS)
•
A host for applications that are developed using cloud application patterns and run in a container or virtual machine
guest operating system.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 15
Windows Server
Nano Server OS capabilities
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Nano Server is available in Windows Server 2016 for:
•
Physical machines
•
Virtual machines
•
Hyper-V containers
•
Windows Server containers
Nano Server supports the following included optional roles and features:
•
Hyper-V, including container and shielded VM support
•
Datacenter Bridging
•
Defender
•
DNS Server
•
Desired State Configuration
•
Clustering
•
IIS
•
System Center Virtual Machine Manager
•
Secure Startup
•
Scale-out file server, including Storage Replica, MPIO, iSCSI initiator, Data deduplication
All supported optional roles and features can be installed either offline, by injecting it into a Nano Server image, or online,
when Nano Server is running. To enable the fastest possible time from instantiating a new Nano Server instance to the
point where a role or feature is up and running, the recommended approach is to inject the role or feature into the offline
Nano Server image. The Nano Server roles and features are not included in the image, instead they are separate packages
in order to minimize the footprint when Nano Server is deployed – any roles and feature not used are not in the image or
consuming disk space.
Nano Server is not listed in Setup. Instead, there is a Nano Server folder on the media with a Nano Server WIM file and a
packages folder. Included with Nano Server is a PowerShell module that can be used to create and configure a Nano
Server image, including adding drivers, roles, and features to a Nano Server image.
Nano Server can join an Active Directory domain, but does not support Group Policy. To apply policy at scale, Nano Server
supports DSC.
Nano Server does not have a local user interface, all management of Nano Server must be done remotely using
PowerShell, MMC snap-ins, the new web-based Server management tools, or other remote management tools. Nano
Server includes PowerShell Core and set of cmdlets as well as WMIv1 and WMIv2 providers for remote management and
automation. The exception to no local user interface is the Nano Server Recovery Console. If keyboard and video access
(locally, vmconnect, or BMC) is available there is a text mode logon that provides a simple menu to repair the network
configuration. This is provided in case the network is misconfigured remotely and the remote management tools can no
longer connect, the network can be repaired instead of redeploying.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 16
Windows Server
Nano Server Hyper-V
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V role can be installed on a Nano Server; this is a key Nano Server role, shrinking the OS
footprint and minimizing reboots required when Hyper-V is used to run virtualization hosts. Nano server can be clustered,
including Hyper-V failover clusters.
Hyper-V works the same on Nano Server as it does in Windows Server 2016, aside from a few caveats:
•
All management must be performed remotely, using another Windows Server 2016 computer. The Hyper-V
Manager or PowerShell can be used from the remote server.
•
RemoteFX is not available.
Windows Server
Nano Server Storage Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Nano Server can run the Windows file server role, which works the same as it does on a full deployment of Windows
Server 2016. The same management restrictions apply – all management must be performed remotely through PowerShell
or management consoles.
Nano Server can also use Multi-Path IO for disk throughput and redundancy, and the file server role can also be joined to
a failover cluster in Nano Server. In addition, there is full iSCSI support and Windows Server 2016 data deduplication can
be used to conserve disk space. The combination of these features make Nano Server an excellent candidate for use as a
scale-out file server cluster, which can back a Hyper-V private cloud using a low-footprint, lower-maintenance OS.
Nano Server also supports the new Storage Server capabilities introduced in Windows Server 2016, such as Storage
Replica. For more details on these, see the Storage Server section below.
Windows Server
IIS on Nano Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
A subset of IIS 10.0 is supported on Nano Server in Windows Server 2016 with support for ASP.NET Core.
•
Individual IIS features can be added to a Nano Server installation of IIS 10 using DISM.exe, PowerShell
IISAdministration module commands (remotely) or AppCmd.exe utility (remotely).
•
Web sites and related configuration tasks like binding HTTPS certificates can be performed using PowerShell or
remote command-line tools.
For the list of functionality supported on Nano Server, see http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-serverdocs/compute/nano-server/iis-on-nano-server
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 17
Windows Server
2008 R2
Nano Server DNS Server
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
You can deploy the DNS server role in Windows Server 2016 on a Nano Server image. Because the Domain Controller role
is not supported on Nano Server, the DNS server cannot host AD-integrated DNS zones; the DNS server will therefore use
file-based DNS zones only.
Administration of DNS, like all Nano features, must be performed remotely through management consoles, PowerShell
scripting, or utilities.
Windows and Linux as a guest OS
With Hyper-V as your hypervisor, you can run a variety of guest operating systems – Windows, Linux, and FreeBSD – in a single
virtualization infrastructure. This capability works for Hyper-V and Azure Stack in your datacenter, and also underlies the Linux
and FreeBSD capabilities in the Microsoft Azure public cloud. Microsoft works with the Linux and FreeBSD vendors and
communities to ensure that these guests achieve production level performance and can take advantage of Hyper-V’s
sophisticated features such as online backup, dynamic memory, and generation 2 VMs.
Linux and FreeBSD virtual
machines for Hyper-V
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V supports a wide variety of Linux distributions and FreeBSD running in guest virtual machines. While these
operating systems can run in emulated mode, the best results are achieved when using the drivers that take advantage of
Hyper-V's virtual devices. These drivers are known as the Linux Integration Services (LIS) or FreeBSD Integration Services
(BIS). With these integration services, Linux and FreeBSD guests achieve production level performance, integrated
management, and use the sophisticated features provided by Hyper-V.
Microsoft has worked with:
•
Red Hat to ensure that the LIS drivers are built-in to Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) releases, and that RHEL is
certified by Red Hat for running on Hyper-V.
•
CentOS community to ensure that the LIS drivers are built into CentOS releases.
•
Debian community to ensure that the LIS drivers are built into Debian GNU/Linux releases.
•
Oracle to ensure that the LIS drivers are built into Oracle Linux releases with both the Unbreakable Enterprise
Kernel and the Red Hat Compatible Kernel
•
SUSE to ensure that the LIS drivers are built into SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) releases, and that SLES is
certified by SUSE for running on Hyper-V
•
Canonical to ensure that the LIS drivers are built into Ubuntu releases.
•
FreeBSD community to ensure that the BIS drivers are built into FreeBSD releases.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 18
Windows Server
Linux Secure Boot
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Linux operating systems running on generation 2 virtual machines can now boot with the Secure Boot option enabled.
Support Linux versions include: Ubuntu 14.04 and later, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 and later, Red Hat Enterprise Linux
7.0 and later, and CentOS 7.0 and later.
PowerShell Desired State
Configuration for Linux
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) enables you to declaratively specify the configuration of your server, and
PowerShell DSC will “make it so.” Originally released for Windows, PowerShell DSC is now available for your Linux servers,
using the same declarative syntax.
PowerShell on Linux and
Mac OS X
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
See the Management and Automation section for details on this exciting new capability for Linux and Mac OS X.
Hot add and remove for network
adapters
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
You can now add or remove a network adapter while the virtual machine is running, without incurring downtime. This
works for generation 2 virtual machines that run either Windows or Linux operating systems.
Manual hot add and remove
memory
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
You can now add or remove memory assigned to a virtual machine while the virtual machine is running, without incurring
downtime. The “add” or “remove” operation is performed by an IT administrator, and is separate from “Dynamic
Memory” functionality, where Hyper-V automatically adds or removes memory from guests in order to meet varying
memory demand over time. Manual hot add and remove works for virtual machines that run either Windows or Linux
operating systems.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 19
Windows Server
Discrete Device Assignment
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
You can now map some PCI Express devices attached to the Hyper-V host, and map them directly into the address space
of a Windows or Linux guest. Applications and libraries running in user space in the guest can directly access the device.
For example, Discrete Device Assignment (DDA) can be used to map a physical GPU into a Linux guest so that a High
Performance Computing (HPC) application can use it for high-speed computation.
Windows Server
SR-IOV support for Linux Guests
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
SR-IOV is now available for Linux guests, just as it is available for Windows guests. When using physical NICs in the HyperV host that are SR-IOV capable, Linux guests can directly access NIC functions in order to achieve higher performance.
Like with Windows guests, Linux guests in a Hyper-V cluster can be live-migrated when using SR-IOV, and will
automatically fallback to a normal network path if the target Hyper-V host does not have equivalent SR-IOV capability.
Hyper-V Socket support for
Linux
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V Sockets provides a secure, general purpose communication channel between Hyper-V host and guest operating
systems. Hyper-V Sockets communicates over the VMBus and therefore doesn’t require network connectivity between the
guest and the Hyper-V host. Applications communicating over Hyper-V Sockets use standard “sockets” as the
programming model, and appear in the Windows and Linux operating systems as a new socket address family type.
Storage
Microsoft offers an industry leading portfolio for building on-premises clouds. We embrace your choice of storage for your
cloud – be it traditional SAN/NAS or the more cost-effective software-defined storage solutions using Storage Spaces Direct and
Storage Spaces with shared JBODs. In Windows Server 2016, we support hyper-converged infrastructure with Storage Spaces
Direct. The Microsoft hyper-converged solution offers the following advantages:
•
Cloud design points and management with standard servers and local storage. It supports modern device types such as
SATA and NVMe SSD. Once deployed management tools are available through System Center Virtual Machine Manager
(SCVMM), System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) and PowerShell.
•
Reliability, scalability and flexibility: This solution is fault tolerant to drives, servers, or even chassis or rack failures. It
scales pools to a large number of drives with simple and fine grained expansion and automatic data rebalancing. VM
creation performance and snapshotting has been optimized.
•
Simplifies the datacenter by collapsing storage and compute. The storage area network is no longer necessary with a
software service acting as a storage controller.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 20
Windows Server
Storage Spaces Direct
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Storage Spaces Direct enables service providers and enterprises to use industry standard servers with local storage to
build highly available and scalable software defined storage. Using servers with local storage decreases complexity,
increases scalability, and enables use of storage devices that were not previously possible, such as SATA solid state disks
for lower cost flash storage, or NVMe solid state disks for better performance. Storage Spaces Direct removes the need for
a shared SAS fabric, simplifying deployment and configuration. Instead it uses the network as a storage fabric, leveraging
our investments in SMB3 and SMB Direct (RDMA) for high speed and low latency storage. To scale out, simply add more
servers to increase storage capacity and IO performance. Storage Spaces Direct supports both converged and hyperconverged deployment modes enabling customer choice.
•
Converged, with storage and compute in separate tiers, for independent scaling and management.
•
Hyper-converged, with compute and storage collocated on the same servers, for simple deployment.
Windows Server
Health Service
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Health Service is a new feature in Windows Server 2016 which significantly improves the day-to-day monitoring,
operations, and maintenance experience of Storage Spaces Direct. The Health Service is enabled by default. New cmdlets
make collecting aggregated performance and capacity metrics simple and fast. Faults and health information bubble up to
a single monitoring point per cluster. New included intelligence determines the root cause of faults to reduce chattiness,
understand severity, and recommend next steps, including providing helpful physical location and part information for
disk replacement. New automation retires failed physical disks, removes them from their pool, and adds their
replacements to the same pool, all while kicking off the requisite repair and rebuild jobs.
Windows Server
Resilient File System
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Resilient File System (ReFS) is now the preferred file system for Windows Server 2016. This updated version provides many
new capabilities for private cloud workloads. Improvements to ReFS in Windows Server 2016 include:
•
Data integrity. Checksums protect all filesystem metadata, while optional checksums protect file data. Checksum
verification occurs on every read of checksum-protected data during periodic background scrubbing. Healing
occurs as soon as corruption is detected. ReFS uses alternate healthy versions to automatically repair corruption.
•
Resiliency and availability. We designed ReFS to stay online and keep your data accessible. It performs repairs
without taking volumes offline. Backups of critical metadata are automatically maintained on the volume. The
online repair process consults backups if checksum-based repair fails.
•
Speed and efficiency. Efficient VM checkpoints and backup are now possible since operations between parent
and child VHDX is a ReFS metadata operation. This means reduced IO, increased speed, and lowered time taken.
It greatly accelerates fixed and dynamic VHDX creation, lowering VM deployment times. ReFS provides nearinstantaneous VM Storage provisioning.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 21
Windows Server
Storage Replica
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Storage Replica is a new feature that protects your data in stretch clusters, server-to-server, and cluster-to-cluster
scenarios. Capabilities include:
•
Zero data loss, block-level replication. With synchronous replication, there is no possibility of data loss. With
block-level replication, there is no possibility of file locking. Also supports asynchronous replication.
•
Guest and host. All capabilities of Storage Replica are exposed in both virtualized guest and host-based
deployments. This means guests can replicate their data volumes even if running on non-Windows virtualization
platforms or in public clouds, as long as they are using Windows Server 2016 in the guest.
•
SMB3-based. Storage Replica uses the proven and mature technology of SMB 3, first released in Windows Server
2012. This means all of SMB’s advanced characteristics - such as multichannel and SMB direct support on RoCE,
iWARP, and InfiniBand RDMA network cards – are available to Storage Replica.
•
Simple deployment and management. Storage Replica has a design mandate for ease of use. Creation of a
replication partnership between two servers can be done with only a single PowerShell command. Deployment of
stretch clusters is an intuitive wizard in the familiar Failover Cluster Manager tool.
Windows Server
Storage Quality of Service
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Enables admins to centrally manage and monitor storage performance and control workload access to storage resources.
Allows critical workloads to receive higher-priority access to storage resources. Policies define storage I/O minimums and
maximums for virtual machines and ensure they are met, providing consistent performance across VMs.
Windows Server
Storage Resiliency
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Protects VMs from underlying transient storage failures. Monitors the state of storage, gracefully pauses VMs, and then
resumes them when storage is available again. Reduces impact and increases availability of workloads running in virtual
machines in the event of storage disruption.
Windows Server
Data deduplication
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Deduplication can provide volume space savings of up to 90% to reduce capacity needs and reduce costs.
New features and improvements in the Data Deduplication feature in Windows Server 2016 include integrated support for
virtualized backup workloads and major performance improvements to scalability of volume (up to 64TB) and file sizes (up
to 1TB with no restrictions).
Deduplication is also fully supported in Nano Server.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 22
Windows Server
Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade is a new feature in Windows Server 2016 that enables an administrator to seamlessly upgrade
the operating system of nodes in a Failover Cluster from Windows Server 2012 R2 to Windows Server 2016. When a rolling
upgrade of a cluster takes place, there will be a temporary mixture of Windows Server 2012 R2 hosts and Windows Server
2016 hosts. Using this feature, the downtime penalties against Service Level Agreements (SLA) can be avoided for Hyper-V
or the scale-out file server workloads. This mechanism can also be used to upgrade your cluster nodes from Windows
Server 2012 R2 to Windows Server 2016 Nano Server. Rolling upgrades can also be orchestrated through System Center
Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM).
Windows Server
SMB 3.1.1
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 includes updates to our main remote data protocol, known as SMB (Server Message Block).
•
Pre-Authentication Integrity: Provides improved protection from a man-in-the-middle attacker tampering with
SMB’s connection establishment and authentication messages. SMB signing protects against an attacker
tampering with any packets. SMB encryption protects against an attacker tampering with or eavesdropping on
any packets.
•
Encryption performance Iiprovements: Default is now AES-128-GCM, which creates a 2X improvement over
AES-128-CCM in many scenarios, like copying large files over an encrypted SMB connection. Multiple encryption
types now allowed for future-proofing, and full compatibility with Windows Server 2012 R2 SMB encryption.
•
Cluster Dialect Fencing: Provides support for the Cluster Rolling Upgrade feature. If the cluster is in mixed
mode, the SMB server will offer up to version 3.0.2. After upgrading the cluster functional level, the SMB server
offers all clients the new 3.1.1 dialect.
Windows Server
Work Folders – overview
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Provides a consistent way for users to access their work files from their PCs and devices.
Ability to maintain control over corporate data by storing files on centrally managed file servers, and optionally specifying
user device policies such as encryption and lock-screen passwords.
Ability to deploy Work Folders with the existing deployments of Folder Redirection, Offline Files, and home folders. Work
Folders stores user files in a folder on the server called a sync share.
Windows Server
Chkdsk Performance
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Ability to run in seconds to fix corrupted data. No offline time when used with CSV. Disk scanning process separated from
repair process. Online scanning with volumes and offline repairs.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 23
Windows Server
Scale-out file server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Scale-out file server (SoFS) provides remote file server shares to be used as continuously available file based storage for
workloads such as Hyper-V and SQL Server 2012.
•
Support for SMB instances on a scale-out file server. Provides an additional instance on each cluster node in
scale-out file servers specifically for Clustered Shared Volume (CSV) traffic. A default instance can handle
incoming traffic from SMB clients that are accessing regular file shares, while another instance only handles internode CSV traffic. This feature improves the scalability and reliability of the traffic between cluster nodes.
•
Automatic rebalancing of scale-out file server clients. Improves scalability and manageability for scale-out file
servers. Server message block (SMB) client connections are tracked per file share (instead of per server), and
clients are then redirected to the cluster node with the best access to the volume used by the file share. This
improves efficiency by reducing redirection traffic between file server nodes. Clients are redirected following an
initial connection and when cluster storage is reconfigured.
Windows Server
SMB 3.0
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
•
SMB Direct (SMB over RDMA). Improves performance by having SMB3 take advantage of RDMA-enabled
network cards, delivering radically improved network performance with little CPU impact. Supports the use of
network adapters that have Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) capability. Network adapters that have RDMA
can function at full speed with very low latency, while using very little CPU. For workloads such as Hyper-V or
Microsoft SQL Server, this boosts performance enabling a remote file server to resemble local storage.
•
Improved SMB bandwidth management. Ability to configure SMB bandwidth limits to control different SMB
traffic types. There are three SMB traffic types: default, live migration, and virtual machine.
•
SMB Multichannel. Enables file servers to use multiple network connections simultaneously. It facilitates
aggregation of network bandwidth and network fault tolerance when multiple paths are available between the
SMB client and server. This capability allows server applications to take full advantage of all available network
bandwidth and makes them resilient to network failures.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 24
Windows Server
2008 R2
iSCSI
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
•
Virtual disk enhancements. Includes a redesigned data persistence layer that is based on a new version of the
virtual hard disk format called VHDX (VHD 2.0). Provides data corruption protection during power failures and
optimizes structural alignments of dynamic and differencing disks to prevent performance degradation on new,
large-sector physical disks.
•
Manageability enhancements. Uses the SMI-S provider with System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM)
to manage iSCSI Target Server in a hosted or private cloud. The new PowerShell cmdlets for iSCSI Target Server
enable the exporting and importing of configuration files, and provide the ability to disable remote management
when iSCSI Target Server is deployed in a dedicated Windows-based appliance scenario (for example, Windows
Storage Server).
•
Improved optimization to allow disk-level caching. Ability to set the disk cache bypass flag on a hosting disk
I/O, through Force Unit Access (FUA), only when the issuing initiator explicitly requests it. This can potentially
improve performance.
•
Scalability limits. Increases the maximum number of sessions per target server to 544, and increases the
maximum number of logical units per target server to 256.
Network File System Support
(NFS 4.1 Support)
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
File sharing solution for enterprises with a mixed Windows and UNIX environment.
Ability to reliably store and run VMware ESX virtual infrastructures with file system support on Windows Server 2012, while
using the advanced high availability of Windows.
Networking
Networking is a foundational part of the software-defined datacenter (SDDC) platform, and Windows Server 2016 provides new
and improved software-defined networking (SDN) technologies to help you move to a fully realized SDDC solution for your
organization. Software-defined networking capabilities have been significantly enhanced and revolve around the new Network
Controller function.
Networking server roles/features such as DNS, DHCP and IP address management (DDI) provide critical infrastructure services,
and have seen important updates as well.
High Performance NIC Offloads: A cost optimized, high-performance data plane
Windows Server 2016 brings a number of enhancements in support of the underlying NIC hardware, specifically taking advantage
of the increases in the ability of NICs to offload expensive processing tasks from the server CPUs.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 25
Windows Server
Virtual Machine Queue
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtual Machine Queue (VMQ) enables a Hyper-V host’s network adapter to distribute traffic for different VMs into
different queues, each of which can be serviced on a different CPU, and which can be optimized for delivery to the VM.
VMQ performs CPU load spreading for Hyper-V traffic that RSS does for native stack traffic.
Windows Server
Virtual Machine Multi-Queue
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Physical NICs that support Virtual Machine Multi-Queue (VMMQ) can offload some of the network traffic processing from
virtual RSS into a traffic queue on the physical NIC itself. VMMQ is VMQ integrated with vRSS in the hardware. Ultimately,
this means virtual machines can sustain a greater networking traffic load by distributing the processing across multiple
cores on the host and multiple cores on the virtual machine. vRSS continues to run on top of VMMQ to do the
distribution across the logical processors. The number of queues used in the hardware for VMMQ for traffic for a
particular VM has no relationship to the number of RSS queues in that VM.
Windows Server
Virtual Receive-Side Scaling
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Receive Side Scaling (RSS) is a capability traditionally enabled in physical network interface cards (NICs) and their driver
stacks to allow processing of network traffic to not be constrained by being bound to a single CPU core in the computer.
This enables higher network throughput by removing the bottleneck of a single CPU core being fully utilized and unable
to keep up with processing incoming network traffic.
In earlier versions of Windows Server, RSS was limited to the NIC in the physical host. In Windows Server 2012 R2, this
capability was extended into the virtual NICs of VMs, enabling network processing load distribution across multiple virtual
processors in multicore virtual machines, removing a possible bottleneck for traffic processing inside a VM.
Virtual RSS (vRSS) is built on top of VMQ, i.e., the packets arriving in a VMQ for a VM are distributed across the logical
processors of that VM using RSS.
Encapsulation task offloads
(NVGRE, VXLAN)
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Either NVGRE or VXLAN can be used to create a tenant overlay virtual network by encapsulating the tenant’s traffic
transmitted between Hyper-V VMs. Encapsulation can be an expensive CPU operation for the Hyper-V Host and so the
ability to offload these operations to a physical network adapter provides increased throughput performance and
decreases CPU host load. The ability to offload these encapsulation operations for NVGRE has been available since
Windows Server 2012 R2. Support for VXLAN encapsulation task offloads has been added in Windows Server 2016. This
feature is developed in partnership with our NIC vendors who have a supporting driver.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 26
Windows Server
Converged RDMA
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The network platform scenarios allow you to:
•
Use a converged NIC to combine both RDMA and Ethernet traffic using a single network adapter, while satisfying
needed Quality of Service (QoS) guarantees required for both types of traffic
•
Use Switch Embedded Teaming (SET) to spread SMB Direct and RDMA traffic flows between up to two network
adapters.
Windows Server
Datacenter Bridging
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
There is support for hardware compatible with Data Center Bridging (DCB). DCB makes it possible to use a single ultrahigh bandwidth NIC while providing QoS and isolation services to support the multitenant workloads expected on private
cloud deployments. New in Windows Server 2016 is the ability to use Network QoS (DCB) with a Hyper-V switch.
Network tracing is streamlined
and provides more detail
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Network traces contain switch and port configuration information that tracks packets through the Hyper-V Virtual Switch,
including any forwarding extensions installed. This simplifies network troubleshooting in a virtualized environment.
Software-defined networking, Network Function Virtualization stack
The new software-defined networking stack in Windows Server 2016 brings in a number of new capabilities – central to which is a
scale out Network Controller. Customers gain the ability to drive up agility in deploying complex new workloads, in dynamically
securing and segmenting their network to meet workload needs, and hybrid flexibility in moving workloads back and forth
between customer datacenters and Azure or other Windows-Server-powered clouds.
Windows Server
Network Controller
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
New in Windows Server 2016, the Network Controller provides a centralized, programmable point of automation to
manage, configure, monitor, and troubleshoot network infrastructure associated with your workloads in your datacenter.
Using the Network Controller, you can automate the configuration of your workloads’ network infrastructure
requirements, instead of performing manual configuration of physical network devices and services.
You can use Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager or PowerShell scripts to easily automate network
configuration across your software defined datacenter.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 27
Windows Server
Virtual Networking with NVGRE
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Both Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows Server 2016 support tenant overlay virtual networks to isolate tenant’s
network traffic and apply fine-grained network policy on a per-IP (CA) basis. In Windows Server 2012 R2, Hyper-V
Network Virtualization (HNV) used the NVGRE encapsulation format to isolate traffic, and this is supported in Windows
Server 2016 as well.
These Virtual Networks can be managed through either System Center Virtual Machine Manager or PowerShell scripts to
create, read, update, and delete resources through the Network Controller.
Windows Server
Virtual networking with VXLAN
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 supports VXLAN encapsulation for virtual networks. Specifically, VXLAN is the default encapsulation
format used for VMs in an overlay to communicate with each other and through Microsoft hybrid SDN gateways. VXLAN
support for communication through 3rd party VXLAN gateways is not supported.
Windows Server
Software Load Balancer
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Software Load Balancer (SLB) is part of the new Software-Defined Networking stack, and is managed through the
Network Controller. It enables access to an arbitrary number of load balanced services’ IP addresses through a single loadbalanced IP address. This load balancing is available for use between services on multiple VMs (East West), or to load
balance a set of VMs, making them appear as a single IP address to external users (North South). The load balancing is
performed at Layer 4, offering TCP and UDP load balancing.
The load balancer also supports Direct Server Return, which allows return network traffic from the load balanced VM
services to bypass the Load Balancing multiplexer. This can significantly reduce the load through the load balancer,
improving performance.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 28
Windows Server
Network Address Translation
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The load balancer includes Network Address Translation capability, offering an ability to present a single IP address to the
public while translating and distributing traffic to workload VMs on private IP addresses.
Network address translation (NAT) allows you to share a connection to the public Internet through a single interface with a
single public IP address. The computers on the private network use private, non-routable addresses. NAT maps the private
addresses to the public address. This software load balancer feature allows organization employees with single tenant
deployments to access Internet resources from behind the gateway. For CSPs, this feature allows applications that are
running on tenant VMs to access the Internet. For example, a tenant VM that is configured as a Web server can contact
external financial resources to process credit card transactions.
Although the Software Load Balancer function was not present in Windows Server 2012 R2, there was a NAT function
available and is why partial support for Windows Server 2012 R2 is shown above.
Windows Server
Distributed firewall
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Distributed firewall is a new service included with Windows Server 2016. It is a network layer, 5-tuple (protocol, source
and destination port numbers, source and destination IP addresses), stateful, multi-tenant firewall. When deployed and
offered as a service by the service provider, tenant administrators can install and configure firewall policies to help protect
their virtual networks from unwanted traffic originating from Internet and intranet networks.
The firewall protects the network layer of virtual networks. The policies are enforced at the vSwitch port of each tenant VM.
It protects all traffic flows – VM-to-VM and traffic inbound to a VM’s network from external networks. The policies are
pushed centrally by the Network Controller, which distributes them to all applicable hosts (running the tenant VMs) in your
environment. This makes all firewall policies manageable through a single point.
The distributed firewall offers the following advantages for cloud service providers:
•
A highly scalable, manageable, and diagnosable software-based firewall solution that can be offered to tenants
•
Freedom to move tenant virtual machines to different compute hosts without breaking tenant firewall policies
•
Offers protection to tenant virtual machines independent of the tenant guest operating system
The distributed firewall offers the following advantages for tenants:
•
Ability to define firewall rules to help protect Internet facing workloads on virtual networks
•
Ability to define firewall rules to help protect traffic between virtual machines on the same L2 virtual subnet as
well as between virtual machines on different L2 virtual subnets
•
Ability to define firewall rules to help protect and isolate network traffic between tenant on premise networks and
their virtual networks at the service provider
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 29
User-defined routing
(route to virtual appliances)
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
In today’s software-defined datacenters, network functions that are being performed by hardware appliances (such as load
balancers, firewalls, routers, switches, and so on) are increasingly being virtualized as virtual appliances. This “network
function virtualization” is a natural progression of server virtualization and network virtualization. Windows Server 2016
supports virtual appliances; they are deployed as pre-built, customized virtual machines, and could come from any vendor
an plug into a Hyper-V environment.
With the software-defined networking stack providing the network as a pooled and dynamic resource, facilitating tenant
isolation, and providing scale and performance, virtual appliances can naturally plug into this environment. The virtual
appliance can be easily moved anywhere in the cloud, and scaled up or down as needed.
Typical virtual appliances include firewalls, Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems, Anti-malware services, network
optimizers, and edge devices like gateways, routers, and proxy servers.
Many of the services described in this section are provided by Microsoft as virtual appliances, such as site-to-site or
forwarding gateways, the software load balancer, and the multitenant distributed firewall.
Windows Server
Port mirroring
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Port mirroring allows all traffic that is sent and received on a virtual port to be copied and sent to another port. In
Windows Server 2012 R2, this capability is supported on the Hyper-V Virtual Switch and is able to mirror a single port to
another single port on the same Virtual Switch.
In Windows Server 2016 this capability is integrated into the SDN infrastructure to allow mirroring of ports on any Hyper-V
host controlled by the controller into a single other port on any other host controlled by the controller.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 30
Hybrid software-defined
networking gateway
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Windows Server 2016 hybrid software-defined networking (SDN) gateway routes network traffic between the physical
network and VM network resources, regardless of where the resources are located. You can use the gateway to route
network traffic between physical and virtual networks at the same physical location or at many different physical locations
over the Internet.
A single gateway instance is capable of serving multiple tenants with overlapping IP address spaces, maximizing efficiency
for the service provider as compared to deploying a separate gateway instance per tenant, while still maintaining isolation
between tenants. In Windows Server 2016, a single tenant’s traffic can be spread across multiple gateway VMs.
The following are hybrid SDN gateway features in Windows Server 2016. In Windows Server 2012 R2, high availability for
the gateway was achieved using guest VM clustering, but in Windows Server 2016, you can deploy the hybrid SDN
gateway more simply in high availability pools that use some or all of these features at one time:
•
Site-to-site VPN. This feature allows you to connect two networks at different physical locations across the
Internet by using a site-to-site (S2S) VPN connection. For Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) that host many tenants in
their datacenter, RAS Gateway provides a multitenant gateway solution that allows your tenants to access and
manage their resources over site-to-site VPN connections from remote sites, and that allows network traffic flow
between virtual resources in your datacenter and their physical network.
•
GRE Tunneling. Generic Routing Encapsulation (GRE) based tunnels enable connectivity between tenant virtual
networks and external networks. Since the GRE protocol is lightweight and support for GRE is available on most of
network devices it becomes an ideal choice for tunneling where encryption of data is not required. GRE support in
Site to Site (S2S) tunnels solves the problem of forwarding between tenant virtual networks and tenant external
networks using a hybrid SDN gateway. A key scenario that the GRE tunnel enables is providing connectivity to
virtual networks when a tenant comes into the cloud over a high-speed link, such as MPLS.
•
L3 (Forwarding) Gateway. The L3 forwarding functionality provides connectivity between tenant virtual networks
and external networks and can be used in all scenarios where GRE tunnels are used. The main difference is that it
allows tenant traffic to arrive at the gateway over a VLAN and forwards traffic between VLANs and virtual
networks.
•
Dynamic routing with Border Gateway Protocol (BGP). BGP reduces the need for manual route configuration
on routers because it is a dynamic routing protocol, and automatically learns routes between sites that are
connected by any of the Windows Server 2016 Gateway functions described in this section. If your organization
has multiple sites that are connected by using BGP-enabled routers such as RAS Gateway, BGP allows the routers
to automatically calculate and use valid routes to each other in the event of network disruption or failure. For
more information, see the BGP topic on TechNet. (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/mt626647.aspx)
•
SSTP site-to-site VPN: This feature introdcued in Windows Server 2016 enables firewall traversable site-to-site
VPN connectivity by leveraging secure socket tunneling protocol (SSTP) that uses HTTPs (port 443) as transport
protocol. This allows administrators or developers to connect to remote networks from deep inside enterprise
networks without modifying edge router or firewall configuration. SSTP site-to-site VPN connections cannot be
configured through Network Controller, they can only be configured through PowerShell.
In Windows Server 2012 R2, there was support for this function, which is removed from Windows Server 2016:
•
Point-to-site VPN. This RAS Gateway feature allows organization employees or administrators to connect to your
organization's network from remote locations. For multitenant deployments, tenant network administrators can
use point-to-site VPN connections to access virtual network resources at the CSP datacenter.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 31
Windows Server
2008 R2
SDN Quality of Service
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
SDN Quality of Service (QoS) allows customers to allocate egress bandwidth limits and reservations for traffic from a VM.
In addition, ingress bandwidth limit is available as well for Windows Server 2016. This allows for differentiated SLAs for
different types of workloads.
Windows Server
2008 R2
Switch Embedded Teaming
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Switch Embedded Teaming (SET) is an alternative NIC teaming solution that you can use in Windows Server 2016. SET
integrates NIC Teaming functionality into the Hyper-V Virtual Switch.
SET allows you to group between one and eight physical Ethernet network adapters into one or more software-based
virtual network adapters. These virtual network adapters provide fast performance and fault tolerance in the event of a
network adapter failure. SET member network adapters must all be installed in the same physical Hyper-V host to be
placed in a team.
For physical switch redundancy, you can connect your teamed NICs to the same physical switch or to different physical
switches. If you connect NICs to different switches, both switches must be on the same subnet.
Switch Embedded Teaming is a feature of the physical host – you would use traditional NIC teaming if you wanted to
introduce a team into a VM or under a non-Hyper-V stack.
Core network infrastructure services
There are a number of enhancements to the core networking services of DNS and IP Address Management in Windows Server
2016. The key new capability is DNS Server policies, which allows you to provide policy-based answers to DNS clients based on
factors like client network location, time of day, or health-based global load balancing.
Windows Server
DHCP Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
DHCP has no significant new features in Windows Server 2016. Two notable changes to DHCP server in Windows Server
2016 as support for link selection suboption (RFC 3527) which has been added for interoperability of Windows DHCP
server with Cisco ACI (Application Centric Infrastructure) environments. The other change was do the dynamic DNS
registration of IP addresses leases performed by the DHCP server. This change was to improve the reliability and
diagnosability of the dynnamic DNS registrations in DHCP server.
Enhancements in DHCP that arrived in Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 include DHCP Failover, DHCP policies, DNS
registration enhancements, DNS PTR registration options, and PowerShell for DHCP Server management. PowerShell
cmdlets are available to perform all DHCP server management tasks.
DHCP Failover provides high availability of DHCP services to clients with DHCP servers running in parallel and replicating
lease information between them. DHCP servers can be deployed in a non-clustered failover configuration that includes
multi-subnet support.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 32
Windows Server
DNS Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Domain Name System (DNS) is one of the industry-standard suite of protocols that comprise TCP/IP, and together the
DNS Client and DNS Server provide computer name-to-IP address mapping name resolution services to computers and
users.
The following are new and updated features of DNS for Windows Server 2016:
•
DNS Policies: You can now configure DNS policies to specify how a DNS server responds to DNS queries. DNS
responses can be based on client IP address (location), time of the day, and several other parameters, and enable
location-aware DNS, traffic management, load balancing, split-brain DNS, and other scenarios. These policies
allow you to perform sophisticated name resolution, pointing DNS clients to alternate service locations using a
more flexible decision-making policy. The policies can be useful in these situations:
o Application high availability. DNS clients are redirected to the healthiest endpoint for a given
application.
o Traffic Management. DNS clients are redirected to the closest datacenter.
o Split Brain DNS. DNS records are split into different Zone Scopes, and DNS clients receive a response
based on whether they are internal or external clients.
o Filtering. DNS queries from a list of malicious IP addresses or FQDNs are blocked.
o Forensics. Malicious DNS clients are redirected to a sink hole instead of the computer they are trying to
reach.
o Time of day based redirection. DNS clients can be redirected to datacenters based on the time of the
day
•
Response Rate Limiting: You can now enable response rate limiting on your DNS servers. By doing this, you
avoid the possibility of malicious systems using your DNS servers to initiate a denial of service attack on a target.
•
DNS-based Authentication of Named Entities: You can now use TLSA (Transport Layer Security Authentication)
records to provide information to DNS clients that state what CA they should expect a certificate from for your
domain name. DANE prevents man-in-the-middle attacks where someone might corrupt the DNS cache to point
to their own website, and provide a certificate they issued from a different CA.
•
Unknown record support: You can now add records which are not explicitly supported by the Windows DNS
server using the unknown record functionality.
•
IPv6 root hints: You can use the native IPv6 root hints support to perform internet name resolution using the
IPv6 root servers.
•
PowerShell Support: New PowerShell cmdlets are available for DNS Server. The cmdlets allow for management
of the new DNS server capabilities and some more granular management of existing DNS Server features.
DNS Client service binding
improvement for multi-homed
systems
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
In Windows Server 2016 (and Windows 10), the DNS Client service offers enhanced support for computers with more than
one network interface. For multi-homed computers, DNS resolution is optimized in the following ways:
•
When a DNS server that is configured on a specific interface is used to resolve a DNS query, the DNS Client
service will bind to this interface before sending the DNS query. By binding to a specific interface, the DNS client
can clearly specify the interface where name resolution occurs, enabling applications to optimize communications
with the DNS client over this network interface.
•
If the DNS server that is used is designated by a Group Policy setting from the Name Resolution Policy Table
(NRPT), the DNS Client service does not bind to a specific interface.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 33
Enhanced IP Address
Management
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
In addition to the previous capabilities of the IP Address Management (IPAM) feature of Windows, there are a number of
Windows Server 2016 enhancements. These include:
•
Enhanced DNS service management. New DNS management features are added allowing administration of a
wider range of DNS elements, including resource records, zones, and conditional forwarders. Role-based access
control feature has been enhanced to support delegation of granular DNS operations.
•
Multiple Active Directory Forest support. Now IPAM can manage DNS and DHCP in non-local forests, provided
a two-way trust is in place.
•
PowerShell support for role-based access control. The IPAM PowerShell manageability has been extended to
allow for configuration of access scopes against IPAM elements.
•
Integrated DNS, DHCP, and IP Address Management. Several new experiences and integrated lifecycle
management operations are enabled, such as visualizing all DNS resource records that pertain to an IP address,
automated inventory of IP addresses based on DNS resource records, and creating or deleting related DNS and
DHCP objects from IP address pivot.
•
Handling very small subnets. IPv4 /32 subnets, and IPv6 /128 subnets are now supported. These are becoming
more common for use in point-to-point links between switches or switch loopback addresses.
•
PowerShell cmdlets to find free address ranges and subnets. New PowerShell cmdlets are added to help find
free IP address subnets or ranges in an IP address block or subnet respectively.
Virtualization
Windows Server 2016 can help you reduce costs with improved software-defined datacenter capabilities across storage,
networking and compute. Underpinning all of these aspects of consolidation are the virtualization capabilities of Windows Server.
In this section, read about the enhancements to the core Hyper-V hypervisor platform.
Windows Server
Hyper-V
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Hyper-V server role in Windows Server enables you to create a virtualized server computing environment where you
can create and manage virtual machines. You can run multiple operating systems on one physical computer and isolate
the operating systems from each other. With this technology, you can improve the efficiency of your computing resources
and free up hardware resources.
New features for Windows Server 2016 include:
•
Hyper-V is a supported role on Nano Server
•
Windows containers
•
Shielded Virtual Machines (see Security section of this document)
•
Virtualization Based Security
•
Virtual Machine Resiliency
•
Production checkpoints
•
Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade for Hyper-V clusters
•
Storage Quality of Service (QoS)
•
PowerShell Direct
•
Compatible with Connected Standby
•
Discrete device assignment
•
Hot add and remove for network adapters
•
Hot add and remove for fixed memory
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 34
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Hyper-V Manager improvements
Integration services delivered through Windows Update
Linux Secure Boot
Nested virtualization
Networking features
Updated virtual machine file formats
Allow running down-level virtual machines
Hyper-V support for Nano
Server
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V role can also be installed on a Nano Server; this is a key Nano Server role, shrinking the
OS footprint and minimizing patching required when Hyper-V is used to run private or hybrid clouds.
Hyper-V works the same on Nano Server as it does in Windows Server 2016, aside from a few caveats:
•
All management must be performed remotely, using another Windows Server 2016 computer. The Hyper-V
Manager or PowerShell can be used from the remote server.
•
RemoteFX is not available.
Windows Server
Windows containers
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows containers provides greater isolation enabling many isolated applications to run on one computer system. They
build fast and are highly scalable and portable. Two different types of container runtime are included with the feature,
each with a different degree of application isolation. Windows Server containers achieve isolation through namespace and
process isolation. Hyper-V containers encapsulate each container in a lightweight virtual machine.
Here are additional features introduced with Windows containers:
•
Nano Server can host both Windows Server and Hyper-V containers as well as be the container OS for both types
of containers.
•
Container data management capabilities are enabled with container shared folders.
•
Container resource policies can be implemented.
Windows Server
Virtualization Based Security
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtualization Based Security (VBS) is a new protected environment that provides isolation from the running operating
system so that secrets and control can be protected from compromised administrators or malware. VBS is used by Device
Guard to protect kernel code, Credential Guard for credential isolation and Shielded VMs for the virtual TPM
implementation.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 35
Windows Server
Virtual machine resiliency
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 increases virtual machine resiliency to help reduce downtime incurred from transient storage and
networking issues:
• Compute Resiliency: Compute servers are more resilient to intra-cluster communication issues.
• Quarantine of unhealthy nodes: Unhealthy nodes are quarantined and are no longer allowed to join the cluster.
This prevents flapping nodes from negatively effecting other nodes and the overall cluster.
• Storage Resiliency: In Windows Server 2016, virtual machines are more resilient to transient storage failures. The
improved virtual machine resiliency helps preserve tenant virtual machine session states in the event of a storage
disruption. This is achieved by intelligent and quick virtual machine response to storage infrastructure issues.
Windows Server
Production checkpoints
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Production checkpoints allow you to easily create “point in time” images of a virtual machine which can be restored later
on in a way that is completely supported for all production workloads. Backup technology inside the guest is used to
create the checkpoint, instead of using saved states. For Windows Server virtual machines, the Volume Snapshot Service
(VSS) is used. For Linux virtual machines, the file system buffers are flushed to create a file system consistent checkpoint. If
you'd rather use checkpoints based on saved states, you can still do that by using standard checkpoints. Production
Checkpoints are on by default in Windows Server 2016.
Hot add and remove for network
adapters
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
You can now add or remove a network adapter while the virtual machine is running, without incurring downtime. This
works for generation 2 virtual machines that run either Windows or Linux operating systems.
Manual hot add and remove
memory
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
You can now add or remove memory assigned to a virtual machine while the virtual machine is running, without incurring
downtime. The “add” or “remove” operation is performed by an IT administrator, and is separate from “Dynamic
Memory” functionality, where Hyper-V automatically adds or removes memory from guests in order to meet varying
memory demand over time. Manual hot add and remove works for virtual machines that run either Windows or Linux
operating systems.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 36
Windows Server
Discrete Device Assignment
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
You can now map some PCI Express devices attached to the Hyper-V host, and map them directly into the address space
of a Windows or Linux guest. Applications and libraries running in user space in the guest can directly access the device.
For example, Discrete Device Assignment (DDA) can be used to map a physical GPU into a Linux guest so that a High
Performance Computing (HPC) application can use it for high-speed computation.
Allow down-level virtual
machines
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
With Windows Server 2016, virtual machines created for Windows Server 2012 R2 with configuration version 5 can run on
both Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows Server 2016. Virtual machines with version 8 are compatible with Windows
Server 2016, but won't run in Hyper-V on Windows Server 2012 R2. Version 5 virtual machines can be manually upgraded
to newer virtual machine versions to leverage new features of Hyper-V.
Previous versions of Hyper-V allow importing of virtual machines from downlevel hosts. In this process the virtual machine
is upgraded to match the current host’s configuration version and cannot be migrated back to the downlevel host.
Windows Server
PowerShell Direct
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
There is now an easy and reliable way to run PowerShell commands inside a virtual machine from the host operating
system. There are no network or firewall requirements, or special configuration. It works regardless of your remote
management configuration. To use it, you must run Windows 10 or Windows Server 2016 on the host and the virtual
machine guest operating systems.
Windows Server
Shared virtual hard disk
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
A shared virtual hard disk enables guest clustering of virtual machines by using shared virtual hard disk (Shared VHDX)
files, hosted on Cluster Shared Volume (CSV) or on Server Message Block (SMB)-based scale-out file server file shares.
Windows Server 2016 allows resizing Shared VHDX without downtime, support for Hyper-V Replica, and host level
backups.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 37
Windows Server
Resize virtual hard disk
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
This provides the ability to expand or shrink the size of a virtual hard disk while the virtual machine is still running. It also
provides the ability to perform maintenance on the virtual hard disk without temporarily shutting down the virtual
machine. Note that this is only available for VHDX files that are attached to a SCSI controller.
Hyper-V Live Migration over
SMB
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V Live Migration over SMB provides the ability to perform a live migration of virtual machines by using SMB 3.0
and later as a transport. This enables taking advantage of key SMB features, such as SMB Direct with RDMA enabled
network cards and SMB Multichannel, delivering the highest speed virtual machine migration with little CPU utilization
impact.
Windows Server
Live Migration with compression
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Live Migration with compression provides the ability to first compress the memory content of the virtual machine that is
being migrated and then copy it to the destination server over a TCP/IP connection. This is the default setting in Hyper-V
in Windows Server 2012 R2 and later.
Live Migration Remote Direct
Memory Access
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 provides the ability to perform faster live migration between Hyper-V hosts by establishing an
efficient memory-to-memory transfer of data using Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA).
Server Message Block Direct (SMB Direct) over RDMA is a technology that, given the hardware (NICs) supporting it, can
establish an efficient memory-to-memory transfer of data..
Windows Server
Cross-version live migration
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Cross-version live migration is the ability to support migrating Hyper-V virtual machines between Hyper-V running on
different versions of Windows Server. This is dependent on the virtual machine configuration versions that are supported
by both hosts participating in the migration.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 38
Windows Server
SR-IOV
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
When using physical NICs in the Hyper-V host that are SR-IOV capable, Windows and Linux guests can directly access NIC
functions in order to achieve higher performance. Guest systems in a Hyper-V cluster can be live-migrated when using
SR-IOV, and will automatically fallback to a normal network path if the target Hyper-V host does not have equivalent SRIOV capability.
Windows Server
Virtual machine generation
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtual machine generation provides the ability to determine the virtual hardware and functionality that is presented to
the virtual machine. The two supported virtual machine generations include:
•
Generation 1: Provides the same virtual hardware to the virtual machine as in the previous versions of Hyper-V.
•
Generation 2: Provides the following new functionality on a virtual machine:
o Secure Boot (enabled by default).
o Boot from a SCSI virtual hard disk.
o Boot from a SCSI virtual DVD.
o Pre-Boot Execution Environment (PXE) boot by using a standard network adapter.
o Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) firmware support.
Windows Server
Live VM Export
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Live VM Export provides the ability to export a virtual machine or a virtual machine checkpoint while the virtual machine is
running without any downtime.
Windows Server
Highly available virtual machines
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtual machines can be deployed in a highly available fashion on a Failover Cluster, which provides resiliency to planned
and unplanned downtime.
Windows Server
Enhanced session mode
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Enhanced session mode provides the ability to redirect local resources in a Virtual Machine Connection session. This
enhances the interactive session experience by providing a functionality that is similar to a remote desktop connection
while interacting with a virtual machine.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 39
Automatic Virtual Machine
Activation
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Automatic Virtual Machine Activation provides the ability to install virtual machines on a computer where Windows Server
is properly activated without having to manage product keys for each individual virtual machine, even in disconnected
environments. It also provides the ability to bind the virtual machine activation to the licensed virtualization server and
activate the virtual machine when it starts. This enables real-time reporting on usage and historical data on the license
state of the virtual machine.
Windows Server
Local file copies to a VM
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows Server 2016 provides the ability to copy files to the virtual machine while the
virtual machine is running without using a network connection with Copy-VMFile cmdlet.
Virtual machine drain on
shutdown
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtual machine drain on shutdown enables a Hyper-V host to automatically live migrate running virtual machines if the
computer is shut down.
Virtual machine network health
detection
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtual machine network health detection enables a Hyper-V host to automatically live migrate virtual machines if a
network disconnection occurs on a protected virtual network.
Windows Server
Shared-nothing live migration
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Shared-nothing live migration provides the ability to migrate virtual machines among Hyper-V hosts on different clusters
or servers with no storage sharing using Ethernet connection only—with virtually no downtime.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 40
Windows Server
Live storage migration
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Live storage migration provides the ability to move virtual hard disks that are attached to a running virtual machine. This
supports transfer of virtual hard disks to a new location for upgrading or migrating storage, performing back-end storage
maintenance, or redistributing the storage load. It also allows for the ability to add storage to either a stand-alone
computer or to a Hyper-V cluster, and then move virtual machines to the new storage while the virtual machines continue
to run. A new wizard in Hyper-V Manager or new Hyper-V cmdlets for PowerShell can be used to perform this task.
Windows Server
Live Snapshot Merging
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Live Snapshot Merging provides the ability to merge snapshots back into the virtual machine while it continues to run
Hyper-V Live Merge.
Non-Uniform Memory Access
support
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Non-Uniform Memory Access (NUMA) support inside virtual machines provides the ability to project NUMA topology into
virtual machines so that guest operating systems and applications can make intelligent NUMA decisions. This functinality
is important for scale-up workloads like databases.
Dynamic Memory Run-time
Configuration
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Dynamic Memory Run-time Configuration provides the ability to make configuration changes to dynamic memory
(increasing maximum memory or decreasing minimum memory) when a virtual machine is running. This reduces
downtime and increases agility to respond to requirement changes.
Windows Server
VHDX Virtual Disk Format
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Provides support for VHDX file format with Hyper-V. VHDX support includes:
•
Up to 64 terabytes of storage per virtual disk.
•
Protection from corruption due to power failures by logging updates to the VHDX metadata structures along with
significant performance and scale improvements.
•
Prevention of performance degradation on large-sector physical disks through optimizing structure alignment.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 41
Windows Server
Hyper-V Resource Metering
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V Resource Metering tracks and reports amount of data transferred per IP address or virtual machine. This allows
customers to create cost-effective and usage-based billing solutions.
Windows Server
Virtual Fiber Channel
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Virtual Fiber Channel provides Fibre Channel ports within the guest operating system. This enables the ability to connect
to Fibre Channel and Storage Area Networks (SANs) directly from within virtual machines.
Windows Server
Hyper-V Replica
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V Replica provides the ability to replicate virtual machines among storage systems, clusters, and datacenters
between two sites to provide business continuity and failure recovery.
The Replica server forwards information about the changes that occur on the primary virtual machines to a third server
(the extended Replica server). The frequency of replication, which previously was a fixed value, is now configurable for 30
seconds, 5 minutes, and 15 minutes. Access to recovery points in from previous versions was changed from 15 hours to
24 hours.
Windows Server
Simultaneous live migrations
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server Hyper-V enables the migration of several virtual machines with support for simultaneous live migrations
at the same time limited only by hardware resources. Live migrations are also not limited to a cluster - virtual machines
can be migrated across cluster boundaries and between stand-alone servers that are not part of a cluster.
Hyper-V host and workload
support
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V has the ability to configure up to 320 logical processors on hardware, 4 terabytes of physical memory, 64 virtual
processors, and up to 1 terabyte of memory on a virtual machine. Additionally it supports up to 64 nodes and 8,000
virtual machines in a cluster.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 42
Dynamic memory, startup
memory, and minimum memory
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Dynamic memory, startup memory, and minimum memory help to attain higher consolidation numbers with improved
reliability for restart operations. This can lead to lower costs, especially in environments that have many idle or low-load
virtual machines, such as pooled VDI environments.
Windows Server
Hyper-V Smart Paging
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V Smart Paging bridges the gap between the minimum and startup memory if a virtual machine is configured with
a lower minimum memory than its startup memory (Hyper-V requires additional memory to restart the virtual machine).
Windows Server
Incremental backup
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V supports incremental backup (backing up only the differences) of virtual hard disks while the virtual machine is
running. Windows Server 2008 R2 provides support for full backups only.
Windows Server
Application monitoring
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Provides the ability to monitor health of key services provided by virtual machines. This provides higher availability for
workloads not supporting clustering with automatic correction (such as restarting a virtual machine or moving it to a
different server).
Windows Server
Hyper-V Sockets
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V Sockets provides a secure, general purpose communication channel between Hyper-V host and guest operating
systems. Hyper-V Sockets communicates over the VMBus and therefore doesn’t require network connectivity and works
with both Linux and Windows Guests.
High availability
Microsoft continues to invest in enhancing and improving the high availability capabilities provided by Windows Server Failover
Clustering. In Windows Server 2016, new and improved features simplify your ability to deploy and manage highly available
failover clusters.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 43
Cluster infrastructure requirements
Windows Server
Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade is a new feature in Windows Server 2016 that enables an administrator to seamlessly upgrade
the operating system of nodes in a Failover Cluster from Windows Server 2012 R2 to Windows Server 2016. When a rolling
upgrade of a cluster takes place, there will be a temporary mixture of Windows Server 2012 R2 hosts and Windows Server
2016 hosts. Using this feature, the downtime penalties against Service Level Agreements (SLA) can be avoided for Hyper-V
or the scale-out file server workloads.
Windows Server
Cloud Witness
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Cloud Witness enables using Azure blob storage as a witness in quorum for a stretched cluster. Cluster witness can now
be a Disk Witness, File Share Witness, or Cloud Witness. This feature allows customers to use Azure as a third datacenter
hosting the Cloud Witness, without the setup and maintenance overhead associated with running a File Share Witness on
a File Server VM in Azure.
Active Directory-independent
clusters
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Active Directory-independent clusters provide the ability to deploy a failover cluster with less dependency on Active
Directory Domain Services. With Windows Server 2012 R2 the Active Directory-detached clusters feature allows having
clusters with names not attached to AD. With Windows Server 2016 Failover Clusters can be deployed in workgroups and
multiple domains.
Cluster resiliency
Windows Server 2016 Cluster
Resiliency features
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 introduces new features to improve cluster resiliency.
•
Cluster Quarantine: Prevents flapping nodes from negatively impacting other nodes and the overall cluster
health. Unhealthy nodes are prevented from joining the cluster for a time period. Once quarantined, VMs hosted
by the node are gracefully drained to healthy nodes.
•
Site Awareness: Fault domains with failure and placement policies which are aware and optimized for the
physical locations of stretched clusters across sites. Enhances key operations during the cluster lifecycle such as
failover behavior, placement policies, heartbeating between the nodes and quorum behavior.
•
VM Load Balancing: Identifies idle nodes in a cluster and distributes virtual machines to utilize them, to
dynamically load balance the cluster.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 44
Windows Server
Cluster node health detection
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Cluster node health detection ncreases the resiliency to temporary network failures for virtual machines that are running
on a Hyper-V cluster.
Windows Server
CSV cache
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
CSV Cache provides a write-through cache for unbuffered IO, which significantly boosts virtual machine performance.
Scalability improvements to increase the amount of memory that can be allocated as CSV Cache.
The CSV Cache with Windows Server 2016 also has interoperability enhancements, such as being compatible with Tiered
Storage Spaces and Deduplication.
Windows Server
CSV interoperability
2008 R2
Adds CSV support for the following Windows Server features:
•
Resilient File System (ReFS).
•
Deduplication.
•
Parity storage spaces.
•
Tiered storage spaces.
•
Storage Spaces write-back caching.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 45
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Management and automation
In order to reap the benefits of a modern platform for running datacenter workloads, it is imperative that capable, scalable,
automation-friendly management features are built in. This allows for not only core management and automation to occur, but
also allows enterprise tools and utilities to extend and expand these management capabilities.
PowerShell 5.1
Windows Server
PowerShell 5.1 Overview
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
PowerShell 5.1 includes significant new features that extend its use, improve its usability, and allow you to control and
manage Windows-based environments more easily and comprehensively. PowerShell 5 enables remote management and
configuration of Nano Server. PowerShell 5.1 has addded key features to support DevOps, such as Desired State
Configuration (DSC), ISE improvements, writing Classes in PowerShell, the Pester test harness, and remote PowerShell
debugging.
PowerShell 5.1 is backward-compatible. Cmdlets, providers, modules, snap-ins, scripts, functions, and profiles that were
designed for PowerShell 4.0, PowerShell 3.0, and PowerShell 2.0 generally work in PowerShell 5.1 without changes.
PowerShell 5.1 is installed by default on Windows Server® 2016 and Windows 10®. All features of PowerShell 5.1 may be
added to Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows 8.1, and Windows Server 2012 R2 by
installing the Windows Management Framework (WMF) 5.1.
Desired State Configuration
updates
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
PowerShell 5.1 makes writing Desired State Configuration (DSC) resources and configurations significantly easier:
•
PowerShell 5.1 enables defining DSC resources using classes which reduces the work required to develop new
DSC Resources.
•
A user can now run a resource under a specified set of credentials by adding the PSDscRunAsCredential attribute
to a Node block.
•
Composite configurations enable combining multiple steps within a configuration into a separate new DSC
resource.
•
A new parameter, ThrottleLimit, has been added to cmdlets in the PSDesiredStateConfiguration module.
•
Cross-computer synchronization is new in DSC configurations in PowerShell 5.1. By using the built-in WaitFor*
commands provides support for dependencies across multiple computers.
Configuration and control of DSC has been added for the Pull Server:
•
The DSC pull server is now configurable to support multiple servers as a role, and to allow separation of the
configuration and DSC resource repositories from the centralized reporting server.
•
With centralized DSC error reporting, rich error information is not only logged in the event log, but it can be sent
to a central location for later analysis. You can use this central location to store DSC configuration errors that
have occurred for any server in their environment.
Users can now control the DSC processing engine known as the Local Configuration Manager (LCM):
•
The DSCLocalConfigurationManager attribute allows configuring the LCM from within a DSC configuration.
•
LCM can assemble the configuration for a node from multiple fragments, called Partial Configurations, enabling
separate update and maintenance of parts of the system state, and the LCM refresh interval.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 46
•
The Get-DSCLocalConfigurationManager cmdlet returns the current state of the LCM as Idle, Busy, Pending
Reboot, or PendingConfiguration.
Improvements to PowerShell ISE ease DSC resource authoring. You can now do the following:
•
List all DSC resources within a configuration or node block by entering Ctrl+Space on a blank line within the
block.
•
Automatic completion on resource properties of the enumeration type.
•
Automatic completion on the DependsOn property of DSC resources, based on other resource instances in the
configuration.
•
Improved tab completion of resource property values.
Windows Server
ISE updates
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The PowerShell ISE editor has these enhancements:
•
You can now edit remote PowerShell scripts and files in a local copy of PowerShell ISE, by running EnterPSSession to start a remote session on the computer that’s storing the files you want to edit, and then running
PSEdit <path and file name on the remote computer>. This feature eases editing PowerShell files that are stored
on the Server Core installation option of Windows Server, where PowerShell ISE cannot run.
•
The Start-Transcript cmdlet is now supported in PowerShell ISE.
•
You can now debug remote scripts in PowerShell ISE.
•
A new menu command, Break All (Ctrl+B), breaks into the debugger for both local and remotely-running scripts.
Windows Server
Pester test framework
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Pester is a test automation framework specifically designed for use with PowerShell scripts and code. Developed initially as
an open source project, Pester is now built into Windows Server 2016 and Windows 10.
It offers these benefits:
•
Pester allows for the development of a standard set of tests for PowerShell code. Pester supports the automatic
execution of tests when PowerShell code is written to the framework.
•
Eases adding PowerShell scripts, DSC Resources, and DSC Configurations into a CI/CD pipeline.
Package Management and
PowerShellGet
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Package Management cmdlets provide a single approach to discover, install, and manage a a range of installer
technologies, which aids deployment within a CI/CD pipeline.
•
On Nano Server, Package Management enables installation of applicable Server Roles and features from a cloudbased repository.
•
Related PowerShellGet cmdlets enable locating, inspecting, and installing PowerShell code from the PowerShell
Gallery, the PowerShell code sharing site hosted by Microsoft.
•
PowerShellGet cmdlets support automatically installing dependent modules from the PowerShell Gallery.
PowerShell 5 supports multiple versions of the same PowerShell module or DSC resource installed side-by-side.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 47
Windows Server
Develop using classes
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Starting in PowerShell 5.1, you can develop by using classes, by using formal syntax and semantics that are similar to other
object-oriented programming languages. Class, Enum, and other keywords have been added to the PowerShell language
to support the new feature.
Windows Server
New PowerShell cmdlets
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
PowerShell 5.1 adds a number of new cmdlets requested by the community, including:
•
The New-FileCatalog cmdlet creates a windows catalog file for set of folders and files that contains hashes for all
files in specified paths. User can distribute the set of folders along with corresponding catalog file representing
those folders. It can be used by receiver of content to validate if any changes are made to the folders since
catalog creation time.
•
Get-ComputerInfo allows quick access to commonly-used information about BIOS, Windows, & Windows
settings.
•
ConvertFrom-String was developed in collaboration with Microsoft Research, and lets you extract and parse
structured objects from the content of text strings. For more information, run Get-Help ConvertFrom-String.
•
New cmdlets in the Microsoft.PowerShell.Utility module, Get-Runspace, Debug-Runspace, Get-RunspaceDebug,
Enable-RunspaceDebug, and Disable-RunspaceDebug, let you set debug options on a runspace, and start and
stop debugging on a runspace.
•
The new Compress-Archive and Expand-Archive cmdlets ease working with ZIP files.
•
Get-Clipboard/Set-Clipboard allow scripting access to the Windows clipboard.
•
A new cmdlet, Clear-RecycleBin, has been added to the Microsoft.PowerShell.Management module; this cmdlet
empties the Recycle Bin for a fixed drive, which includes external drives.
•
A new cmdlet, New-TemporaryFile, lets you create a temporary file as part of scripting. By default, the new
temporary file is created in C:\Users\<user name>\AppData\Local\Temp.
Additional parameters and capabilities have been added to cmdlets to make them easier to use:
•
Out-File, Add-Content, and Set-Content cmdlets have a new –NoNewline parameter, which omits a new line after
the output.
•
Get-ChildItem now includes the –Depth parameter. Used in conjunction with the –RecurseNUMA
•
parameter, it allows users to control how many levels a recursive action should go.
•
Copy-Item now lets you copy files or folders from one PowerShell session to another, meaning that you can copy
files to sessions that are connected to remote computers, (including computers that are running Nano Server,
and thus have no other interface).
•
Results of the Get-Command cmdlet now display a Version column, to show support having multiple versions of
the same module installed.
Windows Server
PowerShell 5.1 security features
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
There are several new security features included in PowerShell 5.1. These include: Script block logging, Antimalware
Integration, Constrained PowerShell and transcript logging.
PowerShell 5.1 is also available for install on previous operating systems starting from Windows Server 2008 R2 and on.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 48
Open-source PowerShell and
Linux support
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Beginning in Windows Server 2016, PowerShell enables true cross-platform management by supporting Linux and Mac OS
X as well as the existing Windows platforms. PowerShell will be built and maintained as an open-source project, based on
the .Net Core CLR, and released for Windows Client, Windows Server, and Linux. The same language features available in
PowerShell on the Nano Server installation option for Windows Server 2016 will be available on selected Mac OS X,
Debian, CentOS/ Red Hat, and Ubuntu distributions.
For IT Pros / ITI / Windows admin / *nix admins / Developers, who need to perform their IT operational tasks, Microsoft
PowerShell provides the automation and configuration management framework that expedites administrative tasks for
Windows and *nix, and enables process automation and configuration management.
This release offers:
•
True cross-platform remote administration. Manage Linux from Windows, and Windows from Linux.
•
The unique value of PowerShell language experience across Windows and *nix environments, specifically:
o Powershell is built for handling Structured Objects and converting from Unstructured Data.
o PowerShell is an extensible tool / solution to manage different Linux distributions in a uniform way
o PowerShell is a framework which provides unique leverage to developers as well as advantages of
metadata driven systems.
•
Community-driven open source project provides the basis for future PowerShell plans and improvements
Management
Windows Server
Server management tools
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Web-based GUI tools hosted in Azure and available for no charge. Especially useful when managing headless servers such
as Nano Server and Server Core. Can be used to manage on-premises infrastructure alongside Azure resources, including
the ability to:
View and change system configuration.
•
View performance across various resources and manage processes and services.
•
Manage devices attached to the server.
•
View event logs.
•
View the list of installed roles and features.
•
Use a PowerShell console to manage and automate.
Because Server management tools is a service hosted in Azure, capabilities will continue to be added to the service
providing additional management tools.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 49
Management Packs for Windows
Server 2016 roles
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
System Center Operations Manager Management Packs updated for Windows Server 2016 roles: Windows Server 2016
installation options: Server with Desktop Experience, Server Core and Nano Server, DNS, DHCP, Failover Clustering, NLB,
Print Services, IIS, AD DS, DTC Transactions, Windows Defender, Windows Server Essentials, AD RMS, Branch Cache, File
and iSCSI Services.
Windows Server
Console host
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The console host is the underlying code that supports all character-mode applications including the Windows command
prompt, the PowerShell prompt, and others has been updated to include several new editing and marking behaviors.
Windows Server
Server Manager
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Server Manager provides a single point of access to manage snap-ins for virtually all installed roles. It provides the ability
to manage a server's identity and system information, display server status, identify problems with server role
configuration, and manage virtually all roles installed on the server.
Windows Server
Multi-server management
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows Server 2016 support management of multiple servers via roles, services, or
customized management groups. It provides a single view for administrators to view events, roles, services, and other
important information for virtually all managed servers.
Role and feature deployment to
remote servers and offline hard
disks
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Server Manager console and PowerShell cmdlets for Server Manager allow the installation of roles and features to
local or remote servers, or offline virtual hard disks.
Ability to install multiple roles and features on a single remote server or offline VHD in a single Add Roles and Features
Wizard or PowerShell session.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 50
Windows Server
Initial Configuration Tasks
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Initial Configuration Tasks provides an integrated console for IT departments to perform initial configuration of a
newly installed server.
Windows Server
Group Policy
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Group Policy provides the ability to specify managed configurations for users and computers through Group Policy
settings and Group Policy preferences.
Windows Azure Online Backup
(cloud-based backup service)
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Azure Online Backup provides offsite protection against data loss from failure with a cloud-based backup
solution, which allows files and folders to be backed up and recovered from the cloud.
Group Policy Infrastructure
Status
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Group Policy Infrastructure Status provides the ability to specify managed configurations for users and computers through
Group Policy settings and Group Policy preferences.
Windows Server
Volume Activation Services
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Volume Activation Services is a server role in Windows Server starting with Windows Server 2012 that enables you to
automate and simplify the issuance and management of Microsoft software volume licenses for a variety of scenarios and
environments. With Volume Activation Services, you can install and configure the Key Management Service (KMS) and
enable Active Directory-based Activation.
Remote Desktop Services
Remote Desktop Services (RDS) enables an independent Windows experience for multiple users who remotely access a virtualized
Windows desktops and applications from a centralized environment.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 51
Windows Server
RemoteFX vGPU
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
RemoteFX vGPU provides a rich desktop remoting experiencing with Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V and Remote Desktop
Services enabling multiple VMs to share the same physical GPU for graphics acceleration. Windows Server 2016 Remote
Desktop Services includes the following improvements to RemoteFX vGPU:
•
OpenGL 4.4 and OpenCL 1.1 API support
•
Up to 1GB dedicated VRAM and up to 1GB of shared memory available in VM
•
Up to 4k resolution support
•
Windows Server 2016 VM support
•
Improved performance
Windows Server
Discrete Device Assignment
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Discrete Device Assignment (DDA) is a Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V feature that allows some PCI Express devices to be
passed through directly to a guest VM (to be controlled by the guest VM). Devices used in this way cannot be used by the
host or other VMs.
Windows Server 2016 Remote Desktop Session Hosts can now take advantage of DDA, enabling enhanced graphics
performance.
•
Full graphics API Support (ex. DirectX, OpenGL, CUDA, OpenCL) (depends on GPU driver)
•
Native GPU Driver Support (Intel, AMD, NVIDIA)
•
Maximum Performance (1 or more GPUs to 1 VM)
•
Multiuser RDSH Support. Multiple sessions can utilize the graphics card assigned to the RDSH VM via DDA
Remote Desktop Protocol
graphics compression
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 (and Windows 10) Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) graphics compression (codec) now implements
full-screen AVC 444 mode. This enhancement provides:
•
Reduced bandwidth and better experience at higher resolutions
•
Hardware offload support.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 52
Windows Server
Scale enhancements
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
In Windows Server 2016 the RD Connection Broker has been enhanced to handle highly concurrent logon scenarios
(“logon storms”). The RD Connection Broker was tested at a rate of 2 connections per second up to 10k concurrent
connections with significant reductions in connection failures and average connection time.
In previous OS versions the RD Connection Broker required a dedicated SQL Server cluster using Windows authentication
for high availability. In Windows Server 2016, SQL authentication is now supported. This enables a database from a shared
SQL server cluster to be used, making smaller scale deployments more cost effective.
Cloud optimizations – Azure
Active Directory
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 Remote Desktop Services can utilize Azure services to provide more cost effective solutions.
Azure Active Directory (AD) Application Proxy allows the RD Web Access and RD Gateway role services to be deployed
inside a firewall and published to the Application Proxy service, instead of exposed directly to the public internet. This
reduces attack surface and, for small deployments, allows the deployment of RD infrastructure role services on a single
machine.
Azure AD Domain Services implements Active Directory Domain Services as a managed service that includes domain join,
group policy, Kerberos, etc. This eliminates the need to deploy and manage domain controller VMs, reducing the cost and
complexity of an RDS deployment in Azure.
Cloud optimizations – Azure
SQL Database
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 Remote Desktop Services can utilize Azure services to provide more cost effective solutions.
In previous OS versions the RD Connection Broker required a dedicated SQL Server cluster using Windows authentication
for high availability. In Windows Server 2016, Azure SQL Database using SQL authentication is supported. Azure SQL
Database includes high availability, disaster recovery, and upgrade mechanisms. A highly available RDS environment using
Azure SQL Database eliminates the need to deploy and manage VMs for SQL Server, reducing the cost and complexity of
the RDS deployment.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 53
Windows Server
Other RDS improvements
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 Remote Desktop Services (RDS) provides several improvements over previous versions, including:
•
Personal Session Desktop collections which allows each user to be assigned administrative access to a personal
RD Session Host VM
•
Support for Generation 2 virtual machines
•
Pen Remoting support
Windows Server
MultiPoint Services Role
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
MultiPoint Services is a new server role in Windows Server 2016 that is easy to deploy and manage. It enables low-cost per
seat desktop computing. MultiPoint leverages the Remote Desktop (RD) Session Host to allow multiple users, each with
their own independent Windows 10 desktop experience, to simultaneously share one computer. The unique MultiPoint
management tool-set allows monitoring and control of all user sessions on the MultiPoint server.
MultiPoint does not use or require the RD Connection Broker, RD Web Access, and RD Gateway role services. Enabling the
Multipoint Services role, installs Remote Desktop Session Host role service which allows users to connect remotely with
devices of their choice by using Remote Desktop applications available on Windows, Windows phone, Android, iOS and
Mac OS as well as thin clients using the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP). In addition, MultiPoint enables new types of low
cost local user stations based on displays and other devices connected directly to the computer and also MultiPoint USB
zero clients connected to the computer over USB.
Application development
Windows Server 2016 resolves the tension between developers and operators by enabling both traditional and container models
for application development, with prescribed solutions and artifacts to achieve best practices for developing and operating the
application/service.
•
•
The traditional model can be applied across physical, guest, or containers, providing the flexibility to run the
application/service in any configuration.
The container model requires the application/service to be only delivered and managed as a container.
In addition to developing the application/service code, each development and operational model requires a set of artifacts so
that operations can benefit from the Windows Server 2016 Cloud Application Platform.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 54
Phase
Traditional model
Container model
Develop
Nano Server SDK allows targeting the smallest
server footprint.
Nano Server SDK allows targeting the smallest
server footprint.
Package
Windows Server App (WSA) installer
Container Images
Configure
PowerShell Desired State Configuration
Container Images
Deploy
Package Management (OneGet)
Container Images
Run
In physical, guests, or containers (Windows Server
Containers through orchestrators
and/or Hyper-V)
Test
Pester
Test frameworks
Secure
Just Enough Administration (JEA)
Multiple containers, and JEA
Container model
Microsoft, Docker Inc. and the Docker community have partnered to provide the Docker engine with support for new container
technologies in Windows Server 2016. Developers and organizations that want to create container applications using Docker will
be able to use either Windows Server or Linux with the same growing Docker ecosystem of users, applications and tools.
Windows containers provide operating system level virtualization enabling multiple isolated applications to be run on a single
system. There are two different types of container runtimes included with this feature, each with different degrees of application
isolation. Both Windows container runtimes are managed by the same API layer providing the same management primitives and
utilizing the same configuration format thus enabling customers at runtime to choose the level of isolation required for the
specific container instance being started. Both container runtimes can be managed with Docker including a new PowerShell
module for Docker.
Windows Server
Windows Server containers
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server containers provide operating system level virtualization enabling multiple isolated applications to be run
on a single system without interfering with each other. Enabling high portability and maximizing operational agility,
Windows Server containers address density and startup performance scenarios achieving isolation through namespace
and process isolation.
The Process isolation component of Windows Server containers has been constructed upon Windows technology first
introduced in Windows NT4 known as Job Objects. Primarily used for applying resource controls on processes it proves a
bases for grouping, co-managing and describing related processes. The capabilities of Job Objects have been expanded
many times over the life time of Windows and now in Windows Server 2016 they form a solid foundation for Windows
Server Containers.
Namespaces isolation describes a form or virtualization where operating system wide or global configuration can be
instanced or virtualized to a given set of processes, as referenced by job objects. This enables each container to see a
unique and standardized view of the underlying operating system maximizing portability and reducing interference from
other processes or configuration. In order for applications inside containers to work properly there are a number of
namespaces that must be virtualized, some of the major ones include: storage, registry, networking, object tables and
process tables. Each container has a virtualized view of these namespaces limiting its ability to see global properties of
the container host or other containers running alongside it.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 55
Windows Server
Hyper-V containers
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Hyper-V containers extend the capabilities of Windows Server containers providing additional isolation and supporting
additional variation in kernel versions by encapsulating each container in a specially optimized virtual machine
environment. This makes them ideally suited for a wide range of scenarios including regulated workloads, hostile multitenancy and hosting environments. Building upon the foundation of the Hyper-V hypervisor and virtualization
technology, a specially designed virtual machine was developed providing the same level of isolation that has been
trusted for nearly a decade in cloud deployments the world over and pairs it with the speed, density and agility that are
the hallmark of containers. Best of all Hyper-V containers and Windows Server containers are fully interchangeable
providing the administrator with the flexibility to choose the right technology for their unique environment.
Windows Server
Emulated Domain Identity
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Emulated Domain Identity allows services and scheduled tasks within a container to run using Active Directory identity. It
allows applications to authenticate using an Active Directory Group Managed Service Account. For example, an enterprise
web application could use Windows Integrated Authentication to connect to a SQL Server instead of using a stored
username and password. Domain credentials are not stored in the container image, and are instead provided to the
container image as its deployed. That allows the same container to be safely reused in different Active Directory domains
to support development, staging and production scenarios.
Windows Server
Nano Server developer experience
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Nano Server is the recommended application platform for all new Server applications. Targeting Nano Server will allow
applications to take advantage of all of the Nano Server benefits at runtime, including running physical, virtual, or in a
container.
Nano Server has the same API surface available for running applications. The Nano Server API surface is a subset of what
is available in Server Core and Server with Desktop Experience. As a subset, any application, tool, or agent that is written
to run on Nano Server will run without modification on Windows Server 2016 Server with Desktop Experience or Server
Core. Nano Server also supports .NET Core for running managed code and ASP.NET Core for web apps.
Nano Server offers a great developer experience through a Visual Studio C++ project template, which provides
IntelliSense and error squiggles support. Full remote debugging from Visual Studio complete the developer experience.
There are also two tools available that can be used to scan existing binaries to identify APIs not included in Nano Server:
•
Nano Server API Scan – Scans native code to identify Win32 APIs that are not included in Nano Server. In many
cases, this tool will suggest replacement APIs.
•
API Portability Analyzer –Scans managed code to identify which .NET profile the APIs are included in. For Nano
Server you need to use the .NET Core profile.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 56
Traditional model
This section describes the traditional (non-container focused) model for applications.
Windows Server App (WSA)
installer
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Windows Server App (WSA) installer is based on declarative APPX. In addition to Nano Server support, WSA will be
available on Server Core and Server with Desktop Experience to help deliver more consistent and reliable
installs/uninstalls. With WSA, developers declare install actions, intra-package dependencies, and Server extensions in the
WSA manifest. WSA does not allow custom code during install and requires online install. With WSA, you can deploy
applications and their dependencies via APPX PowerShell cmdlets or Package Management.
WSA is not suitable when the install process requires a GUI, interactive user input, custom code.
Desired State Configuration
(DSC)
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) enables cloud scale configuration management. It is a declarative platform
used for configuration, deployment, and management of systems. For more information, see the DSC Updates topic in the
PowerShell section below.
Windows Server
Pester
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
The Pester test framework was initially developed as an open source project. It is now built into Windows Server 2016 and
Windows 10. For more information, see the Pester Test Framework topic in the PowerShell section below.
Just Enough Administration
(JEA)
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Just Enough Administration (JEA) provides a Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) platform through PowerShell. It allows
specific users to perform specific tasks without giving them administrator rights. For more information, see the Just
Enough Administration topic in the Security section above.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 57
Internet Information Services 10 (IIS 10)
Windows Server
IIS on Nano Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
A subset of IIS 10.0 is supported on Nano Server in Windows Server 2016 with support for ASP.NET Core.
•
Individual IIS features can be added to a Nano Server installation of IIS 10 using DISM.exe, PowerShell
IISAdministration module commands (remotely) or AppCmd.exe utility (remotely).
•
Web sites and related configuration tasks like binding HTTPS certificates can be performed using PowerShell or
remote command-line tools.
For the list of functionality supported on Nano Server, see http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-serverdocs/compute/nano-server/iis-on-nano-server/
Windows Server
Wildcard Host Headers
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
IIS 10.0 now supports Wildcard Host Headers, enabling admins to setup a webserver for a domain, e.g. contoso.com, and
then have the webserver serve requests for any subdomain.
IISAdministration PowerShell
module
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
IIS 10.0 introduces IISAdministration, a new PowerShell module for managing IIS.
•
IISAdministration will scale better in scripts that take a long time to run with WebAdministration.
•
You can now get a direct reference to an instance of Microsoft.Web.Administration.ServerManager object and do
anything that you can do in Microsoft.Web.Administration namespace alongside your scripts.
•
PowerShell pipeline compatibility was the driving force behind the design of many cmdlets. As such,
IISAdministration works much better with PowerShell Pipeline.
Windows Server
HTTP/2
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Windows Server 2016 adds support for HTTP/2 protocol. This allows numerous enhancements over HTTP/1.1 such as more
efficient reuse of connections and decreased latency, improving web page load times. HTTP/2 support in Windows Server
2016 is added to the Networking stack (HTTP.sys) and integrated with IIS 10.0, allowing IIS 10.0 websites to automatically
serve HTTP/2 requests for supported configurations.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 58
Multi-tenant high-density
websites
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
IIS provides a hosting-friendly web server platform with FTP Logon Attempt Restriction and improved site density,
centralized SSL certificate support, and server name indication. The following capabilites are provided:
•
•
•
Increased Internet Information Services (IIS) scalability with SSL scalability, centralized SSL certificate support, and
NUMA-aware scalability.
Binding a more secure site required a unique network endpoint using an IP address and a port in the previous
versions of Windows Server, which often meant having a dedicated IP address for each secure site because site
owners wanted their secure sites to be running on a standard SSL port.
Support for increased density of secure sites for greater scalability of sites.
Windows Server
2008 R2
Dynamic IP restrictions
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
Dynamic IP restrictions provide protection against brute force attacks with automatic detection of attacks in- progress and
blocking of future requests from the same address. It also supports the ability to modify the number of times FTP will
allow users to attempt unsuccessfully to log in within a specified time period before denying access to the IP address.
Windows Server
2008 R2
Multiple language support
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
2016
IIS contains support for programming languages, such as .NET, PHP, Node.js, and Python. Enhanced support for PHP and
MySQL through IIS extensions. IIS provides ASP.NET 4.5 integration and support for the latest HTML5 standards.
Distributed Transaction Coordinator
Microsoft Distributed
Transaction Coordinator
enhancements
Windows Server
2008 R2
Windows Server
2012 R2
Windows Server
Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator (MSDTC) enhanced features in Windows Server 2016 include:
•
New interface and method for Rejoin function in resource manager.
•
Enlarged DSN name for XA.
•
Include image file path in tracing file name.
Windows Server 2016 Technical Feature Comparison Guide – Page 59
2016
Was this manual useful for you? yes no
Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the work of artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Download PDF

advertising