Windows 8 Server: Screenshots + What's new

The download for the developers preview of Windows Server 8 went live not too long ago. If you are wanting to see what the install process looks like for Windows 8, look no further.

Windows Server 8 is only available to MSDN subscribers right now. We've fired up our VM's and are installing it right now. The first thing we noticed thats new is an install option called "Features on Demand" -- we'll let you know when we know what that means!

Don't like green? Too bad! It's all green!

Press and hold on the key icon next to the password field reveals what you've typed.

Er...Tablet interface on a server? Nice... 

That is one Metro looking server dashboard! It looks like you can manage remote servers now.

New features: Add remote servers, get current status of servers, perform multiple tasks on servers, deploy roles and features remotely

Disaster recovery and Cloud Backup included in Windows Server 8!

Tablet interface running on Windows Server.

​Install roles based on the scenario.

Install roles to servers that aren't even powered on! (Virtual servers hosted on Hyper-V)

​Adding remote servers for management

​​Once grouped, alerts are aggregated together for at-a-glance viewing of server status

​​Beyond "Server Manager", other administration tools retain the old management console style


We were tipped that "Server Core" edition has a load more features that are hidden in the GUI right now, too. More on that later.

Developing story...

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SoCalRox said,
Damn, that's ugly.

When wasn't Windows Server ugly? Server 2008 is even worse, given the un-Aero-ification of it with Aero design retrofitted for Windows 95 controls.

SoCalRox said,
Damn, that's ugly.

I think, Microsoft designers and managers should stop using acid. When they will realize that in some cases "new" doesn't mean "better".

Definitley going to work on both the Server and Win8 sides to get a foothold before my peers at school and work.
The changes seem good from a management standpoint, and I like the interface that shows you the status of other servers... but I'm thinking that should be viewable from a management system (either PC or a low-end, monitoring only server).

dagamer34 said,
To me, the server UI is an indication that the client desktop Windows 8 UI is still going to get a Metro style update.

The "rumours" having siad there will be a metro (and a aero) theme for the normal windows desktop for many months now

Why is there a tablet interface on a server?? actually that makes sense, since then you can remote desktop to the server from a tablet and use the tablet interface to navigate the server more easily! The rest seems not bad. simple yet effective (from the looks of it at least) which is what you want.

Xerxes said,
Why is there a tablet interface on a server?? actually that makes sense, since then you can remote desktop to the server from a tablet and use the tablet interface to navigate the server more easily! The rest seems not bad. simple yet effective (from the looks of it at least) which is what you want.

I agree. Most of my server apps and admin tools are shortcuts on the Desktop. This not only makes them easier to find and open, but allows for a clutter-free desktop on a server.

Xerxes said,
Why is there a tablet interface on a server?? actually that makes sense, since then you can remote desktop to the server from a tablet and use the tablet interface to navigate the server more easily! The rest seems not bad. simple yet effective (from the looks of it at least) which is what you want.

It's not a tablet interface. It has been stated many times by Microsoft and others that the Start Screen and other aspects of the Windows 8 experience work excellently on either a tablet/slate, notebook/laptop, or desktop, with either a touchscreen or a hardware mouse and keyboard.

I really hope that UI and window interface processes change by release. Those UI interfaces are to white and it is hard to separate visually what section is part of what on some of those windows.

Whoa! Can anyone clarify if the Start screen/new Metro UI is ONE of the ways to configure the server or have they replaced the MMC based UI and wizards, Server Manager etc entirely everywhere? I hope there's an OPTION to not use the ugly and over simplified Metro UI. I like the Start screen and Metro UI for TABLETS, for servers and desktops, this oversimplified UI is NOT ideal.

xpclient said,
Whoa! Can anyone clarify if the Start screen/new Metro UI is ONE of the ways to configure the server or have they replaced the MMC based UI and wizards, Server Manager etc entirely everywhere? I hope there's an OPTION to not use the ugly and over simplified Metro UI. I like the Start screen and Metro UI for TABLETS, for servers and desktops, this oversimplified UI is NOT ideal.

Why would you like it on tablets, but not a notebook or desktop? It works just as excellently on all three formfactors, so surely if you like it on one, you'd like it on the others?

OUCH!! Harsh colors for a server UI will make server admins weary.

I suggest more neutral colors. It's a server operating system it's supposed to have easy on the eyes colors and a slick, professional interface.

also the switching back in forth between the dektop and the metro UI would slow the server down. it would also put extra processes on and increase the attack footprint.

you want to decrease the attack footprint and not blend consumer stuff into it and create more mess as well.

and the metro UI has HTML5, silverlight, etc.... that would pose risks to the server. You do not want to run web content in the server. This is why IE is locked down on server 2008.

(server 2008 user here for desktop and server use [vms and web server with IIS and apache])

they should have only had the standard desktop in this one.

remixedcat said,
also the switching back in forth between the dektop and the metro UI would slow the server down. it would also put extra processes on and increase the attack footprint.

Why would it slow the server down, it's built in to the system, unless you have a very bad server I bet it can handle switching between windows... It's just switching "apps" pretty much like if you alt-tab between two apps, has that ever slowed your system?

Leonick said,

Why would it slow the server down, it's built in to the system, unless you have a very bad server I bet it can handle switching between windows... It's just switching "apps" pretty much like if you alt-tab between two apps, has that ever slowed your system?

most run servers headless or minimal.... also interface lag causes high I/O wait. even on a nice server it will still drag stuff down. I notice high page fault delta on window animations.... just becuase it may not appear to slow things down too much (CPU usage may be low but P/F delta and I/O reads/writes is high) it still grinds the HDD down. DWM.exe spikes to 4500-6800 PF Delta it may be even more excessive on win 8 becuase of more animations. on a server that's a no-no.

servers have a lot more disk contention then a desktop does.

Jeez that's like a terrible w95 theme from, um, 1995. Some of the clean, simple themes for w7 look incredible. This w8 stuff all looks terrible

Loving the fact that the dashboard supports multiple servers, and the scenario based installation sounds interesting, letting you install services across multiple servers from one console.

I think the green is a bit much, but then again, I haven't experienced it first hand, so I can't say much about it. Personal experiences are often far different than seeing someone else's.

why do they want to make it look nice and friendly?

end users will just think oh it looks just like my desktop so it must be easy, I won't pay our support people £xx per year I'll get my kid to do it....
I've seen it happen and had to try and fix the **** that follows.
why don't MS make it look different to the desktop \ mobile phone etc , rather than simplifying it down so much

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