What’s new in Server 2008 R2? A lot!

Ars Technica has a really excellent summary of the major new features in Windows Server 2008 R2. Some of the new features that jumped out at me are:

  • Full Aero Glass with RDP. Great for virtual desktops.
  • Remote server management tool now is network enabled so you can manage remote servers.
  • Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) is available for Windows 7 to fully manage your servers without RDP.
  • Includes PowerShell 2.0.
  • .Net Framework added to server core.
  • Offline Domain Join for clients/servers.
  • Active Directory recycle bin for ‘oopsies’
  • Active Directory Administration center for simplifying helpdesk access to AD
  • GPO Preferences allow you to customize a lot of settings such as scheduling power saver modes, mapping printers, or controlling a user’s environment. Goodbye logon scripts.
  • You can have multiple firewall policies active at once, which are all network location aware.

Check out the whole article for a lot more detail on each of these features. As the article mentions, Server 2008 R2 is not a traditional R2 release with minor tweaks. R2 is a major update to the server OS from the kernel on up.

You can download a huge Server 2008 R2 feature guide here.

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