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Windows Server 8 Is A Radical Departure From Previous Releases 347

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the rms-not-impressed dept.
Julie188 writes "While the world is distracted with the Window 8 client, Microsoft is simultaneously working on Windows Server 8. At BUILD, Microsoft unveiled its next-generation server OS under heavy secrecy to a room full of analysts and product testers. WS8 is radically different than its predecessors. There's an argument to make that it's not actually Windows. The code they saw was pre-beta and an obvious attempt to put an arrow in the heart of former-softie-turned-VMware-CEO Paul Maritz. Windows 8 Server editions are to be run in Server Core format (the GUI will be optional). PowerShell has gotten an overhaul and its command list will exceed 2,300 native commandlets in Windows Server 8. Hyper-V has also been revamped and will become massively scalable in the number of VMs supported and in the size of each VM." In related news, it appears that Java now runs on Microsoft's Azure platform.
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Windows Server 8 Is A Radical Departure From Previous Releases

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  • Not surprised that Java runs on Azure now. Even iCloud uses Azure for their backend.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 14, 2011 @01:23PM (#37400788)

    These just sound like incremental improvements. I'm not complaining but adding extra commandlets and features isn't a "radical departure". Plus, the GUI is optional on the current version of Windows Server.

    • by Bert64 (520050)

      It's not optional in the true sense of the word, the system boots up and initialises its video drivers, a window manager and then displays a graphical login prompt. After logging in, you still have a window manager and now have a cli based interface running in a window.

      A true non gui environment would have a full screen cli interface in text mode (i.e. no unnecessary loading of video drivers), and this interface would also be available over a serial console (serial consoles work much better remotely on slow

      • A true non gui environment would have a full screen cli interface in text mode (i.e. no unnecessary loading of video drivers)

        Which would require the hardware to support a text mode. Not all video chipsets on all platforms do. But if only enough driver is loaded to support a terminal emulator, and the operating system still supports old-skool serial consoles, I agree with you.

    • Kind of, but if I remember right, Server 2008 core (without the gui) is missing Powershell, which is a massive hinderance to maintaining it..

  • by roc97007 (608802) on Wednesday September 14, 2011 @01:28PM (#37400864) Journal

    C'mon, Bill, do you really expect us to fall for that AGAIN?

    (Of course, some will... I'm depressed now...)

  • by lennier1 (264730)

    Someone in Redmond realized that a server doesn't necessarily need a GUI???

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by bloodhawk (813939)
      To be fair they did come to this realisation several years ago now. products like Exchange, DPM and even many windows commands are only fully accessible through CLI/powershell and current versions of win server can run headless for many tasks.
    • by dave562 (969951)

      They realized it a few years, but it looks like they are now thinking about making it mandatory.

      See "Windows Server Core"

  • VMS -> WNT -> W2K -> W2003 -> W2008 -> VMS.

  • While the world is distracted with the Window 8 client

    .
    "The world"? Probably the funniest thing I read all day.

  • And with that Windows catches up with the late 70's. :P

  • its command list will exceed 2,300 native commandlets

    Holy fuck. I don't even know how to process that number of commands to remember.

    • One of the things that made Unix so powerful was that you only really had to understand 20 or so commands, which could be composed in arbitrary ways to get you the behavior you needed. I would guess that many of those 2300 commands are just hard-coded implementations of commonly used compositions of other commands, or that the same tasks could be accomplished by composition.
      • by tgd (2822)

        Thats how PowerShell works, too...

        2300 "commands" really means there are a few hundred objects with some number of operations you can take on them, and you do so by chaining them together like named pipes. Imagine, if you will, that every config file on your Unix system was an object that you could pipe commands in and out of. That's how you have to compare it to Unix.

        So, in some ways its easier. Rather than having to do piping through grep/sed/whatever to switch some setting in a config file, you just call

        • by blair1q (305137)

          so every config file object inherits an interface with grep/sed/whatever on it?

          it better, or i'm going to have to hack around it

      • by nschubach (922175)

        Part of the simplicity of those 20 commands revolve around the everything-as-a-file architecture of *nix though.

        I'm sure the 2300 commandlets involve everything from interacting with files to registry settings to services...

        Would it have been so hard for them to deprecate the registry interface by making it look like a folder to the command line?

        Services could technically be placed in the same boat using file links: (I have to confess, I don't know if this is even possible in *nix. It's pretty much off th

        • by Chokolad (35911)

          Would it have been so hard for them to deprecate the registry interface by making it look like a folder to the command line?

          Registry actually looks like a folder to Powershell command-line, since about Vista/Win2008 server times.

      • Yes and that is why there are whole books written on regular expressions. If you try to do anything non-trivial in *nix on the command line that you haven't done before chances are you will spend 30min googling to find an example and someone will have a really cool 15 character way of doing it with sed or something. You'll get there, you'll get better at regex etc and need help less but non-trivial things are just that non-trivial and take a lot of thought an knowledge to do well.
    • by Hatta (162192)

      For comparison, English has about 500,000 words.

    • powershell is an object oriented command-line shell based on introspection so you can always know the command available on the object you have selected using the get-command call so 2300 commands is not that bad if they are not 2300 globally visible commands.

      • by blair1q (305137)

        But it assumes the command name is sufficient to understand what it operates on.

        Probably 70% as useful as "man -k" ever was.

  • ... by turning a PC into an oversized, user-unfriendly smart phone.

    • by gubers33 (1302099)
      Servers are not supposed to be user friendly with a nice interface they are supposed to be workhorses. Adding more tasks into Powershell so you can script them is the right thing to do.
  • MS has put a lot of effort into developer productivity in Windows 8, especially when crossing boundaries between the client, server, and cloud. Visual Studio is now buttressed with a new version of Expression Blend that edits both HTML5 and XAML. The editor has a live preview that lets you navigate a site with an inboard browser, then dive into the code on a single rendered element, even if it is dynamically generated. Likewise, there are new remote debugging tools that lets the developer go from a runni

  • Their claims of performance enhancements seem promising and I think the Live Storage Migration feature could really come in handy.

    Of course I won't jump on board right away, but it's definitely something I'll try to get a hold of to set up in a test environment.

  • by Toreo asesino (951231) on Wednesday September 14, 2011 @04:27PM (#37403030) Journal

    Every time there's a new article about Windows/Microsoft anything, ever, no matter what the subject 90% of the posts try and just poo-poo it. In the meantime, the real world will (normally) pick the right tool for the job and ignore the petty politics & gripes that gets in the way of real discussion which seems to be common-place here.

    IMHO Windows does try to "be" linux as Linux is so flexible as to run on anything from $20 routers to incredably scalable multi-CPU servers. There is some overlap of course, by largely the two technologies service different needs IMO.

    So calm down kids, we can all be friends, see? Some of us like MS toys, some of us prefer others. Let's try and not flame-war each other ok?

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