Windows Server 2008 Release Candidate Evaluation Software - Released
Microsoft Windows Server 2008 is the most advanced Windows Server operating system yet, designed to power the next-generation of networks, applications, and Web services. With Windows Server 2008 you can develop, deliver, and manage rich user experiences and applications, provide a secure network infrastructure, and increase technological efficiency and value within your organization.
Windows Server 2008 builds on the success and strengths of its Windows Server predecessors while delivering valuable new functionality and powerful improvements to the base operating system. New Web tools, virtualization technologies, security enhancements, and management utilities help save time, reduce costs, and provide a solid foundation for your information technology (IT) infrastructure:
- Built for the Web
Windows Server 2008 comes with Internet Information Services 7.0 (IIS7), a Web server and security-enhanced, easy-to-manage platform for developing and reliably hosting Web applications and services. A major enhancement to the Windows Web platform, IIS7 includes a componentized architecture for greater flexibility and control. IIS7 also provides simplified management, powerful diagnostic and troubleshooting capabilities that save time, and comprehensive extensibility.
Internet Information Server IIS7 together with the .NET Framework 3.0 provide a comprehensive platform for building applications that connect users and data, enabling them to visualize, share, and act on information. Additionally, IIS7 plays a central role in unifying Microsoft's Web platform technologies—ASP.NET, Windows Communication Foundation Web services, and Windows SharePoint Services.
- Virtualization Built In
Microsoft Windows Server Hyper-V, the next-generation hypervisor-based server virtualization technology, allows you to make the best use of your server hardware investments by consolidating multiple server roles as separate virtual machines running on a single physical machine. You can also efficiently run multiple operating systems—Windows, Linux and others—in parallel on a single server. With virtualization built into the Windows Server 2008 operating system and simple licensing policies, it's now easier than ever to take advantage of the cost savings of virtualization.
Applications can also be efficiently virtualized using Windows Server 2008 centralized application access technologies. Terminal Services Gateway and Terminal Services RemoteApp allow easy remote access to standard Windows-based programs from anywhere by running them on a terminal server instead of directly on a client computer—without the need for a complicated VPN.
Windows Server 2008 is the most secure Windows Server yet. The operating system has been hardened to protect against failure and several new technologies help prevent unauthorized connections to your networks, servers, data, and user accounts. Network Access Protection (NAP) helps ensure that computers that try to connect to your network comply with your organization's security policy. Technology integration and several enhancements make Active Directory services a potent unified and integrated Identify and Access (IDA) solution. And Read-Only Domain Controller (RODC) and BitLocker Drive Encryption allow you to more securely deploy your AD database at branch office locations.
- A Solid Foundation for Your Business Workloads
Windows Server 2008 provides a solid foundation for all of your server workload and application requirements while being easy to deploy and manage. The all-new Server Manager provides a unified management console that simplifies and streamlines server setup, configuration, and ongoing management. Windows PowerShell, a new command-line shell, enables administrators to automate routine system administration tasks across multiple servers. Windows Deployment Services provides a simplified, secure means of rapidly deploying the operating system via network-based installations. And Windows Server 2008 Failover Clustering wizards, and full IPv6 support plus consolidated management of Network Load Balancing, make high availability easy to implement even by IT generalists.
Finally, the new Server Core installation option of Windows Server 2008 allows for installation of server roles with only the necessary components and subsystems without a graphical user interface. Fewer roles and features means minimizing disk and service footprints while reducing attack surfaces. It also enables your IT staff to specialize according to the server roles they need to support.
Choose one of the options above or download a different edition for a 30-day evaluation:
Windows Server 2008 Standard RC1 (x86 and x64)
Windows Server 2008 Enterprise RC1 (x86 and x64)
Windows Server 2008 Datacenter RC1 (x86 and x64)
Windows Web Server 2008 RC1 (x86 and x64)
Read a description of each product edition or use the links on the left to find out more about Windows Server 2008.
Note: A Customer Technology Preview version of Windows Server virtualization, a key feature of Windows Server 2008 is also included in this release as a part of the Standard, Enterprise, and Datacenter 64-bit editions. Please refer to the Windows Server virtualization page for more details.