New Top Features of Windows Server 2016 | Digital Software Market
Windows Server 2016 has now come up with an updated Nano Server module for building Nano Server images along with more separation of physical host and guest virtual machine functionality. You also get an improved Recovery Console and inbound and outbound firewall including the ability to repair the configuration of WinRMin in addition to that.
Nano instances consume less than 512MB of disk space and less than 256MB of memory, depending on the configuration. This makes a big difference for all virtual machines built on Nano, acting as an infrastructure host installed on bare metal and as a guest operating system running as a virtual machine. New in Technical Preview 3 is the Emergency Management Console, which allows you to view and fix network issues directly from the Nano Server Console.
Hyper-V rolling upgrades-
Upgrading to a new operating system gives out significant challenges in many respects. Earlier versions of Windows Server did not allow you to upgrade without stopping the cluster. This can be a serious problem for production systems that normally run continuously. In many cases, the workaround was to launch a new cluster running the updated operating system and then migrate the workload from the old cluster. Of course, this required entirely new hardware. Microsoft Windows Server 2016 supports the rolling cluster upgrades from previous Windows Server 2012 R2. This means you can perform these upgrades without stopping your cluster or migrating to new hardware. This process is similar in that all active roles on individual nodes in the cluster must be moved or removed to another node in order to upgrade the host operating system. The difference is that all members of the cluster continue to operate at the Windows Server 2012 R2 functional level (upgraded from the old host) until all hosts run the new operating system and explicitly upgrade the cluster's functional level.
PowerShell keeps receiving updates with each new release of the operating system. Windows Server 2016 displays several new PowerShell cmdlets that focus on specific features. You can also use PowerShell commands to see the differences between new releases. The PowerShell cmdlet Get-Command returns a list of commands that you can send to a file for further processing.
The new cmdlets covered include 21 DNS-related commands, 11 Windows Defender, 36 Hyper-V, 17 IIS management, and 141 network controller-related commands. Another major driving force for PowerShell in this release is related to the Desired State Configuration (DSC). Microsoft has done a lot of work to make DSC the first tool to configure and maintain not only Windows Server, but also Linux servers. With the introduction of the new package manager service, OneGet, there are many new possibilities driven by PowerShell.
Convergence is a buzzword here, with new features that help businesses and hosting providers merge traffic from multiple tenants to reduce the number of network interfaces. This may reduce the number of network ports required by half. Another new feature is called Packet Direct. It focuses on increasing the efficiency of the entire workload and including everything from small packets to large data transfers.
Technical Preview 3 includes a new server role called Network Controller. It provides a central point for monitoring and managing network infrastructure and services. Other extensions that support software-defined network capabilities include an L4 load balancer, an extended gateway for connecting to Azure and other remote sites, and an integrated network fabric that supports both RDMA and tenant traffic.
Storage Spaces Direct-
Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 2 takes the storage space one step further and has the ability to build a highly available storage system using only the disks directly attached to each node. Restoring force between nodes uses the network and the SMB3 protocol. This new feature, called Storage Spaces Direct, continues to support older SATA-based hardware while leveraging newer hardware such as NVMe SSDs. At least four nodes must be available to create a cluster using Storage Spaces Direct.
ReFS as a Primary File System-
The Resilient File System (ReFS) is another feature introduced in Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012. ReFS was designed from the beginning to be more resistant to corruption than previous versions and bring many advantages to the NTFS on-disk format. Microsoft has enhanced both the usefulness and importance of ReFS in Windows Server 2016 TP2 by making the file system suitable for Hyper-V workloads.
This has a significant impact on Hyper-V performance. To get started, you should see a new virtual machine with a fixed size VHDX created about as fast as pressing return. The same benefits apply to creating checkpoint files and merging VHDX files created during backup creation. These features are similar to what ODX (Offload Data Transfers) can perform on large storage appliances.
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