The latest, and perhaps the most significant, version of Windows Server was released in September 2012. What makes this release so significant is not just the new interface and default installation, but the enhanced Windows PowerShell, support for new hardware (which means increased performance, reliability, scalability, security, and storage options). The new virtualization enhancements have greatly increased not only the scalability of Hyper-V but performance and enterprise adoptability as well. In short, Windows Server 2012 helps you transform your IT operations to reduce costs and deliver a whole new level of business value has hundreds of new features and enhancements spanning networking, storage, user experience, cloud computing, and more. This six part series will look at twelve fantastic features of Windows Server 2012.
PowerShell is a command-line scripting language used for administration and management of Windows Server 2012 (as well as other products such as Exchange, Lync, SharePoint, SQL, and System Center). PowerShell enables IT professionals to control, automate, and perform bulk administration of Windows operating system and applications that run on Windows. Windows PowerShell 3.0 is backwards-compatible with PowerShell 2.0 and its associated cmdlets. Some of the new windows features in PowerShell include:
Disconnected Sessions — These are user-managed, persistent sessions (PSSessions) that are created by using the New-PSSession cmdlet. The PSSessions are saved on the remote computer and are no long dependent on the session in which they were created.
Module Auto-Loading — All functions and modules that are installed on the computer will be loaded even if the module is not imported into the current session.
PowerShell ISE — Features include auto-save, block copy, brace-matching, Intellisense, recent items list, Show-command window, support for writing Windows PowerShell script workflows, and a unified Console Pane.
Updatable Help System — You can use the Update-Help cmdlet to identify, download, unpack ad validate new help files from the internet.
Windows PowerShell Workflow — Windows PowerShell workflows are sequences of administrative or management actions that can be applied against multiple computers. These actions can be frequent, long-running, repeatable, and uninterruptible. Users and administrators can write workflows in XAML.
Windows PowerShell Web Access — Administrators and users can run PowerShell commands and scripts in a web-based console.
Hyper-V (or Hypervisor) enables you to create a virtualized server computing environment. Virtualization with Hyper-V enables you to improve the efficiency of your computing resources by utilizing more of your hardware resources. Hyper-V was first released with Server 2008 and has seen substantial improvements ever since. Windows Server 2012 introduces several new and greatly enhanced features that puts in on par with the best hypervisors available.
Scalability in Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V
|Resource||Hyper-V on Windows Server 2012||Hyper-V on Windows Server 2008 R2|
|Active Virtual Guests per host||1024||384|
|Logical Processors per host||320||64|
|Memory per guest session||1 TB||64 GB|
|Physical Memory (per host)||4 TB||1 TB|
|Virtual CPUs per virtual guest session||64||4|
|Maximum number of nodes in a cluster||64||16|