Saturday, August 13, 2005

I'm on the 'Longhorn' Server beta!

Just finished installing Longhorn server on VMWare... will report back sometime in the next 48 hours with initial thoughts...

Somewhere along the way I must have lost my desktop mindset... the Windows Vista beta was so disappointing, and I wasn't even that excited about it before I saw it! But just after reading some of the beta documentation I'm excited about Longhorn server. Like the whole 'Core' concept for example... about time Microsoft! The 'core' build gives you the ability to install a server role, and add nothing else. It is stipped completely of a lot of extraneous stuff, like the explorer shell. 'What the!?!' I hear you say! That's right, you can now install a DHCP,DNS,File Server or Domain Controller WITH NO EXPLORER SHELL. It just has the CLI. Makes perfect sense - when was the last time you logged onto a Domain Controller to manage AD? Or a DNS server to create a new record? It just doesn't happen. So now you get the option of doing a role based install that uses bugger all disk (~500Mb) and next to no resources for anything other than what it's dedicated role uses. Double thumbs up to whoever at Microsoft got this concept up and running!

Now that there is a common code base, and the presentation and communication layers are becoming more compartmentalised, I am sure we will see a slew of role based server releases from Microsoft. Storage Server and the upcoming Cluster Server are just the beginning... thanks Linux - without you I'm sure none of this would have happened. We'd still be getting monolithic 'install everything just in case something will use it someday' server OS'es.

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