A guide to Microsoft Windows Server 2016

Last updated:April 2016

Essential Guide

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Editor's note

Now that mainstream support for Windows Server 2008 has ended and Windows Server 2012 is getting up in years, more enterprises may want to consider jumping to Windows Server 2016, which is scheduled to be released in the third quarter of 2016.

Microsoft Windows Server 2016 includes several new features, including Nano Server -- a lightweight installation option that is 93% smaller than traditional Windows Server deployments -- and native container support. Windows Server 2016 also includes new software-defined storage options and improvements to Hyper-V.

Whether you're on the fence about upgrading or have already decided to deploy the new server operating system when it is officially released, this guide will highlight the most anticipated Windows Server 2016 features.

1Storage Spaces Direct adds functionality

Storage Spaces Direct, a new storage feature in Windows Server 2016, uses software to let administrators build highly available storages systems with local storage.

2The debut of containers and Hyper-V updates

Containers are the next progression of virtualization -- isolated environments where applications and services can run without affecting the system and vice versa. Windows Server 2016 will also feature significant security developments to Hyper-V.

3Nano Server in Windows Server 2016

Nano Server is a lightweight installation that is 93% smaller than a traditional Windows Server deployment. Despite its small size, Nano Server offers big benefits to enterprises. This section will break down the benefits of Nano Server, how to deploy it and what it means for Windows Server.

4Keep the server OS running smoothly

This section of the guide will walk you through how to manage Windows Server 2016 using features such as rolling cluster upgrades and PowerShell Direct.

5Windows Server 2016 news

This section will look at different Windows Server 2016 news stories.