With a huge release of products launching from Microsoft over the next few months (including Windows 7), it can be easy to miss the strongest product they’ve updated which serves as the foundation for all the others, Windows Server 2008 R2.
Although the “R2” title implies it’s merely an update release, the new features contained within R2 make it the most robust platform for businesses ever released by Microsoft. We’ve been running the version for several months now, and it bundles in features that commonly costs thousands of dollars into the core operating system.
Released in conjunction with Windows 7, 2008R2 enables system administrators to create:
- an always on VPN for laptop users (DirectAccess);
- a caching file server process to speed up updates and downloads for all users in your network (BranchCache);
- always-available virtual machines that can fail over in seconds to spare hardware should problems arise (Hyper-V Live Migration);
- stronger scripting support to allow new installations to take place in minutes, rather than hours;
- a network recycle bin to avoid costly administrator errors;
- numerous security enhancements to prevent attacks via DNS and buffer overflows;
- easier setup for common tasks such as DHCP scope setup and user provisioning;
- common administrative functions without touching the server or even logging in remotely to it (Powershell 2.0); and
- a free virtual server environment (Hyper-V Server) for clients with strong budgetary restrictions.
We are working with many of our clients to utilize Windows Server 2008 R2 in their information technology environments. The rock-solid stability (we’ve had it in production for almost 6 months now here at New Signature) combined with the features above have made it a great value for many of them. Just give us a call and we’re happy to explain the benefits.