Microsoft gives Project Honolulu a name: Windows Admin Center

Today, Microsoft announced that Project Honolulu is officially Windows Admin Center. It was originally announced at Microsoft's Ignite 2017 conference, and has been available in the form of several technical previews since then.

Windows Admin Center is meant to be a sort of centralized hub that brings together various consoles that IT admins might be using. These might include "Event Viewer, Device Manager, Disk Management, Task Manager, Server Manager", and more. In short, it's designed to be a "simple and elegant" answer to managing Windows Server and Windows 10 deployments.

The services promises to help with the following:

  • Simple and modern management experience: Windows Admin Center is a lightweight, browser-based GUI platform and toolset for IT admins to remotely manage Windows Server and Windows 10 machines.

  • Hybrid capabilities: Windows Admin Center can manage Windows Server and Windows 10 instances anywhere including physical systems, virtual machines on any hypervisor, or running in any cloud. Connect to the cloud with optional value-added features like integration with Azure Site Recovery for protecting your virtual machines, and support for Azure Active Directory to control access with multi-factor authentication.

  • Integrated toolset: Rather than switching between several different tools and contexts, with Windows Admin Center you get a holistic overview of your resources and the ability to dig into granular details. In addition to server and client machines, it allows you to manage failover clusters and hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) deployments.

  • Designed for extensibility: We’ve been working with early-adopter partners to refine the extension development experience in a private preview of our SDK. That means soon you’ll be able to extend Windows Admin Center’s capabilities to 3rd-party solutions. For example, you’ll start to see 3rd party hardware vendors use Windows Admin Center to provide management of their own hardware.

The service is browser-based, and is officially supported in Edge and Chrome. It doesn't require internet access though, and doesn't have any cloud dependencies, so it doesn't need to connect to Azure. Microsoft did note that Azure integrations will be added over time, but they won't be a requirement.

Windows Admin Center is now generally available, and Microsoft says it's supported for use in production envirments. The company also noted that Windows Server 2019 - which should be released later this year - will be a major milestone, since Admin Center is optimized for Server 2019. But while it works best with the upcoming version of the OS, it works with Windows Server 2012 or newer.

If you want to download Windows Admin Center, you can find it here.

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