back to article Windows Server 8 beta ready for download

Microsoft has released the beta build of its forthcoming Windows 8 Server operating system, a day after making its "Consumer Preview" of the Windows 8 client-side code available on Wednesday. Microsoft is touting its Server 8 platform as having been built with virtualization and cloud support in mind. The code has version …


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  1. Christian Berger

    The problem with shifting to command line

    The problem simply is that most Windows applications, also on the server side, either are ported from other platforms (which might integrate) or are legacy applications which nobody will ever port to make use of the Power Shell.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The problem with shifting to command line

      PowerShell is a poor imitation of a proper terminal anyway.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The problem with shifting to command line

      Then connect and administer with rdp. Easy.

  2. Anonymous Coward

    Not even gonna bother with this one...

    Even though I'm a sysadmin and quite frankly am both intrigued and fascinated with some of the stuff Microsoft has done on Windows administration. For example; I really enjoy working with stuff such as PowerShell. And don't cut MMC short; "remote desktop service management" on my Win7 workstation. I have both of my Win2k3 added in a group thus allowing me with one click of a mouse to check up on both servers (who are logged on, open sessions, etc.).

    Win8 can't be run using MS' own virtual PC. SO I don't think this critter will fare any better. Oracle's VirtualBox did it, yet this evening I actually ran into a BSOD on Win7. The very /first/ time that has ever happened after running Win7 for roughly one year now. As such I won't be keeping it around.

    To me Win8 server shows the same shortcomings as Win8 client; MS is fully staring themselves blind on a single goal or motivation and everything else has to make room for it, no matter the cost. Win8 client should be obvious; tables & touch. How the desktop users are to cope is totally unimportant (note; this is only how I perceived things).

    Win8 server seems to have Unix and previous Novell servers in mind. CLI is the way to go. Now, I do agree that you can do a lot on the commandline, PowerShell is a very good example of that. But a CLI only gets you so far, esp. on a GUI based OS.

    And that's even ignoring that PowerShell 2.0 does /not/ even allow you to edit files on a remote server. Its not supported, perhaps using an edlin-like client or "copy con" commands. But a full screen editor such a vi? Forget about it.

    So quite frankly. I'm gonna read about this one, but am not gonna bother trying.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. eulampios


      >And that's even ignoring that PowerShell 2.0 does /not/ even allow you to edit files on a remote server. Its not supported, perhaps using an edlin-like client or "copy con" commands. But a full screen editor such a vi? Forget about it.

      It took 20 years to <quote> shift IT admins off using GUI controls and instead get them using PowerShell to manage the software – a bit of a retro step in that Microsoft was once very keen on on server GUIs.</quote> One can foresee MS's enlightenment to "invent" ssh or similar with win9.

      I heard about possibility to run PW inside GNU Emacs. Of course, this would extremely non-cosher from the MS' point of view, but there's hardly anything to match its power and versatility (except perhaps for vim ). Emacs has a remote client called tramp that can support quite a few protocols, or you can use ssh there MS wouldn't even know :)

  3. M. B.


    ...downloaded, installed in VMware Workstation (works fine) and had a go with it. Going to take some getting used to without the Start button and needing to use a Metro-like sidebar (expanding from the left side of the screen) to run apps or power off.

    On the other hand, the default server management dashboard featuring server groups, storage pools, and other stuff is neat enough. Much improved performance monitoring views. Roles install the same as before, and I have a box running AD/DNS/DHCP/WSUS configured and serving a few virtual clients so traditional services are still easy as pie to set up and work with as long as you have a GUI.

    Have not tried remote admin tools yet but sincerely hoping they work as expected. I can't even imagine how annoying it would be to manage group policy from the command line.

    1. CaNsA

      @M. B. Re: Already...

      No start button on Win 8 Server?

      I'm grabbing it now and will find out shortly I guess....

  4. WR
    Thumb Up

    I totally back this.

    GUI apps have place being on a server.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ...does this version boot?

    Win8 Consumer Preview is currently holds the Worlds Fastest Bluescreen record at one second into booting the ISO before it's even *installed*.

    I'm downloading Win8 Server out of habit to test, but does this version actually boot under VSphere or am I wasting my time again?

    Not a good start really.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Instant BSOD - same as 'Consumer Preview'

    Just tried to install it on VSphere 4.1 - same problem as the consumer preview - instant Bluescreen.

    I was hoping to install it on VSphere so that colleagues could evaluate it in a sensible fashion, however I really can't be bothered talking everyone into setting up Virtual Box just to get this installed. Try harder next time Microsoft.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

  8. Dom 1

    Gimme my GUI!

    I love the GUI. I want the GUI. Yes, PowerShell etc. are very useful for certain operations, but getting rid of the GUI defeats the object of having "Windows". You might as well dump M$ and use Linux instead, if M$ are going to force us to use the CLI. The whole point of Windows ARE the windows!

    And I guess, with this new direction, SBS products are going to be dumped, as they where designed to be setup by pretty much anyone? Those enterprising [end] users who have setup their own copy of SBS sure as hell aren't going to be able to make the transition to CLI only - even if there is an option furthar down the line to install a GUI.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Gimme my GUI!

      A GUI has no business being on a server where it will never be seen.

      GUIs are for end-user systems, not back-end grunts. Seems like this is a lesson MS is finally starting to get through its thick skull.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Gimme my GUI!

      You can still use MMC on a client to remotely configure/administer a server which doesn't have a GUI. Or you can use powershell at the server or on a client, it's your choice.

      Come to that, you can still install the GUI on the server, if you really must.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sighs all round...

    Do any of you actually do server administration?

    The sites we look after have GUIs for a lot of legacy setups, but we're moving quite quickly to using IPSec & firewalls on all (incl Windows) servers and while most Windows servers may have GUIs locally, we mostly use WinRM. (Remote Powershell via SSL Web) There's two reasons for this.

    Firstly there's a "trusted" remote admin machine that has *all* the remote management (SAN, switches, V-Sphere, etc) GUI software, and we build custom management GUI Powershell applets. Hosted Exchange does not even work with Exchange Management Console - it's all powershell, and WMI/WinRM lends itself to remote monitoring and managed services. Each "admin" has an user_su login with admin privileges so logging has a track of who does what. No-one uses their normal logins or the Administrator account.

    Secondly we're working towards treating each server as separately addressable from the internet, since we're treating IPv6 seriously. We're sick (truthfully we're not since it's easy money) of fixing up new customers with poker stars on their server's desktop. The fact V-sphere now includes firewalling, just adds an extra layer of protection. We use these techniques even for the virtualised Mac servers.

    Anyone who's not at least dabbling in the above methods will find decent customers harden to keep against the competition, and sustainable profit harder and harder to obtain.

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