Overview of the Windows Server versions currently available at Wiresoft
At Wiresoft you will find the latest version of Windows Server - Windows Server 2019 - as well as a number of previous versions. This allows you to supplement your existing server licenses at a reasonable price or to upgrade to a higher version. We offer the following versions of Windows Server in our online shop:
- Windows Server 2019: Standard 16-core, Standard 2-core, Datacenter 16-core, Datacenter 2-core
- Windows Server 2016: Standard, Datacenter
- Windows Server 2012 R2: Standard, Datacenter
- Windows Server 2008: Standard
The diverse Wiresoft offer for Windows servers enables you to license your server in a customized way, which helps you to reduce IT costs and increase efficiency in your company at the same time. Depending on the server version or edition, you can purchase single server licenses plus client access licenses (CALs) in addition to core-based licenses.
Below you will find a short presentation of the respective server versions, detailed information can be found on the respective product pages as well as directly from us - via e-mail or chat.
Windows Server 2019
With Windows Server 2019, the current, growing trend towards cloud-based services and applications is optimally supported. The server operating system is based on Windows 10 and has a number of optimizations of existing as well as new functions which facilitate the efficiency of typical business processes and at the same time increase the management and protection of data. Thanks to the close integration of Microsoft's Azure Services, companies benefit not only from the new hybrid functions but also from additional security levels, including the integration of Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection. Key new features of Windows Server 2019 include
- Shielded Virtual Machines (Shielded VM) - for the development of highly secure virtualization infrastructures. With this security technology, critical data of a VM stored in the public cloud is reliably protected against misuse and theft.
- Software Defined Networking (SDN) - with this tool, physical network components such as routers and switches as well as virtual ones - such as gateways - can be centrally configured and dynamically managed.
- Storage Replica - with the disaster preparedness integrated in Storage Replica, downtimes and data loss are minimized. Storage Replica supports both synchronous and asynchronous replication of data.
- Storage Spaces Direct - for connecting local data storage to a virtual cluster and building scalable, highly available storage systems - even from different data storage systems.
- Expanded support for Kubernetes and Linux - including parallel use of Linux and Windows managed by Kubernetes; new features such as container networking have also been added.
Windows Server 2016
With Microsoft Windows Server, enterprises and institutions have a flexible cloud-ready operating system that provides all the features needed to create and manage highly virtualized data center environments. With optimized scalability, this version of Windows Server can support any number of virtual machines. Key features in Windows Server 2016 include support for docker containers, Nano Server, which provides enhanced security, Hyper-V-shielded VM, which protects data in the cloud, and the Network Controller, which enables administrators to efficiently manage switches and subnets in both virtual and physical networks, among other things:
- Nano Server in Windows Server 2016 allows you to save more than 90% space in a virtual machine, allowing you to create significantly leaner servers. Nano Server can also be used as a file server or for creating Hyper-V clusters.
- Hypervisor (Hyper-V) - an important element of Microsoft's Server Software-Defined Datacenter (SDDC) - has a higher scalability and also offers support for storage spaces; with VM Storage Resiliency the tolerance against storage system failures is increased.
- Storage Spaces Direct simplifies the consolidation of local data storage into a virtual storage cluster, enabling the creation of scalable, highly available storage systems.
- Storage Replica not only minimizes server downtime, but also effectively prevents data loss. Storage Replica supports both synchronous and asynchronous replication by synchronizing two servers or replicating volumes between clusters.
- Shielded virtual machines with Host Guardian Service (HGS) and the Guarded Hosts provide reliable protection against data misuse or theft in the public cloud.
- Software Defined Networking (SDN) allows both central configuration and dynamic management of physical (routers, switches) and virtual network devices (gateways). It is used to dynamically create and secure networks and includes features for defining and scaling policies to control physical and virtual networks.
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2 has a number of new key features as well as enhancements to existing tools - with a particular focus on virtualization, which will be further strengthened with the connection to cloud services with Windows Azure. Based on Windows 8.1, virtual and local servers in corporate networks can be managed together and controlled centrally via a web portal - including a virtual desktop infrastructure. The server version also offers improved access and data protection. Important functions in detail are:
- Hyper-V for a higher level of virtualization by simplifying Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) access - which in Windows Server 2012 R2 is now host-based - so virtual servers can be automatically activated faster, improving efficiency.
- The new Hyper-V Recovery Manager enables cloud-based replication or backup of virtual servers based on Hyper-V or Windows Azure virtual machines.
- Storage Spaces connects SSD and SATA disks in Storage Pools, allowing them to be shared, significantly improving the performance of a file server.
- Desired State Configuration (DSC) is an extension of PowerShell that allows administrators to more easily manage and deploy configurations of services for computers and servers in their environment.
- VM Connect allows easy copying and moving of files via drag and drop. In the same way, with Live Migration it is possible to move or copy virtual servers between Hyper-V hosts while the system is running and at a significantly higher speed than before. Virtual hard disks can also be enlarged or reduced in size, or virtual servers can share a virtual hard disk without hindering employees in their work.
- Dynamic Access Control complements the Active Directory security lines - this tool controls access to data using metadata and also protects it from unauthorized access while moving.
Windows Server 2008
Windows Server 2008 provides organizations with a reliable foundation for building a robust, virtualizable network by providing all the essential tools needed to manage, protect, and transfer data - complemented by Windows Vista integration. Key features include PowerShell based on the .NET Framework, Point of Service for .NET, Windows Portable Devices, improved failover clustering and, in addition to RemoteApp, Hyper-V, which enables the virtualization of server systems.
Windows Server 2008 Standard also includes many new security features, such as the integrated firewall with snap-in for remote server management tools, the Read only Domain Controller, and NAP (Network Access Protection) network access protection. The following features in Windows Server 2008 should be highlighted:
- Active Directory - the directory service of Microsoft Windows Server - consists of the five roles Active Directory Domain Services for domain and resource management, Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services for connecting LDAP-compliant services, Active Directory Federation Services for authenticating users who log on via the Web, Active Directory Rights Management Services for protecting against unauthorized access, and Active Directory Certificate Services to provide the public-key infrastructure.
- Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008 enables the hypervisor to set up and manage virtual servers on a physical server, the latter using Microsoft Management Console (MMC). Hyper-V also enables live migration of virtual machines while they are running and failover clustering. By supporting Network Address Translation (NAT) and Network Access Protection (NAP), Hyper-V also helps to reduce the use of valuable resources.
- Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV) CSV provide a common cluster file system that simplifies the management of highly available virtual environments, allowing multiple nodes in a failover cluster to have simultaneous read/write access to the same logical unit number (LUN).
- Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) - a component of RemoteApp - makes it possible to provide desktops in a virtual environment. In doing so, only individual applications can be virtualized, which are then used like permanently installed programs.
- DirectAccess allows the secure configuration of remote clients when accessing the company network via a protected VPN connection - one of the biggest security gaps in communication to date.
The Microsoft licensing model for Windows Server
Microsoft defines a partially different license metric for the different Windows Server versions. This also regulates the licensing options or alternatives available for each edition.
Licensing of Windows Server with server license plus client access license
For the Standard of Windows Server versions in particular, Microsoft offers licensing per server license plus client access licenses (CALs). This is a cost-effective way for smaller companies in particular to use the functions of Windows Server software. The following conditions apply:
1. every single server needs its own license. This license also provides admin access rights.
In order to use the server services and functions as an employee, a single client access license - CAL - must be purchased.
3. this CAL is available in two variants: as a user CAL for a single person or as a device CAL for a single terminal (PC, laptop, etc.).
4. each client access license can only be issued once, a later transfer to another person or another terminal device is not possible.
Licensing of Windows Server on a core basis or by number of processors
With other server editions, such as the frequently purchased Enterprise Edition of Windows Server, the server version 2012 marks a change in licensing: While up to Windows Server 2008 the number of existing processors on a server was the decisive factor, with the subsequent version 2012 the number of cores is the basis for licensing. The following conditions apply to core-based licensing of Windows Server versions:
When calculating the license requirement, a minimum of 16 cores is always assumed, even if the actual number of cores a server has is less than this.
In any case, 8 packages with 2-core licenses are necessary for correct licensing, or in the 2019 version, the licenses are also available in 16-core packages.
3. core licensing also covers additional access licenses - CALs are therefore not required.
License purchase including license consulting for Windows Server at Wiresoft
At Wiresoft you will find licenses for all described server versions including CALs for Standard as original Microsoft license products - at a particularly favourable price. You benefit from our special reduced price of the server licenses - these were legally purchased by European companies through Wiresoft and are 100% operational. As a Wiresoft customer you are always on the safe side, because all licenses were checked by us exactly for their authenticity.
You too can license your servers particularly economically with the licensing offer from Wiresoft - and take advantage of our expert advice. If you have any questions about the most suitable licensing with a Microsoft server version, please do not hesitate to contact us.