What users are saying about
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555 Ratings

Windows Server

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555 Ratings
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Score 8.5 out of 101

Likelihood to Recommend

Windows Server

Any environment that uses Microsoft software and hardware should run with a Windows Server infrastructure behind it. I've worked in organisations in the past that have used Windows PCs and no server behind them and it causes a huge number of problems in terms of time to manage the use of devices and causes problems with security over the network and access to shared data. Whilst things are migrating towards being completely cloud based, there is still a need, at the moment in my opinion, for a Windows Server infrastructure for both end-user experience and admin maintenance.
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Pros

Windows Server

  • Windows Server acting as a domain controller allows for very comprehensive management of computers and workstations across an organization, specifically when it comes to Active Directory and Group Policy.
  • Active Directory allows for comprehensive managements of users within a domain (or organizational unit). User groups can be created with different permissions for various network resources, and users can be added to multiple different groups. In addition, login scripts can be created that are linked to each user allowing for automatic mapping of network drives and printers (among other items) every time a user logs in. As such, with the correct login script, a new user can login for the first time and have access to all the necessary resources within an organization.
  • Once a domain is created, adding computers to it is quick and easy. Any computer that is a part of a domain can be logged in by any domain user. Removing a computer from a domain, via Active Directory, immediately revokes all domain users ability to login to that computer.
  • Group Policy, an integral part of Windows Server, is a vast and comprehensive tool to push out settings to domain computers and users. Settings can be anything from adding or removing mapped network drives, adding or removing printers, turning on and off specific Windows settings. Group Policy can be managed on both a computer basis and a user basis.
  • Windows Server's built-in file sharing capabilities allow it to be used as a powerful file server. Permissions for shared folders can be set on a per-user basis and/or via group membership. Using advanced sharing features, a file or folder can be shared via multiple names with different permissions for each shared name.
  • Windows Server includes a powerful DNS server that works in conjunction with the Domain Controller functionality. The DNS server supports forward and reverse zones as well as manually adding items into a DNS zone.
  • Hyper-V is included with Windows Server, providing a powerful and first-party way to create virtual machines.
  • Windows Server includes a built-in DHCP server that can be used in place of a standard network router.
  • Windows Server includes a built-in web server hosting functionality via IIS (Internet Information Services)
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Cons

Windows Server

  • The overall performance of server 2016's UI feels worse than previous versions (running on the same HW spec in the same virtual environment).
  • Versioning schemes could be more transparent (IIS versions across OS versions, MSSQL versions, etc) and easier to follow.
  • Managing some security settings via the server registry is fairly cumbersome. Third party applications and community created scripts exist to ease these issues, but with the emphasis on security today, they should have their own control panel section instead.
  • Microsoft's experience homogenization between their desktop OS and server OS has added a lot of "fluff" and graphical flare to the server OS that isn't really needed and feels like it gets in the way, to be honest.
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Likelihood to Renew

Windows Server

Windows Server 10.0
Based on 3 answers
I've carefully reviewed the servers and services currently running on Windows Server 2012, and given the opportunity would renew them as is going forward. There are two systems I currently have in place, one is a very large Linux implementation for a large ecommerce site, and one is a very large backup solution front ended by FTP servers running Linux. Neither are well suited for Windows, but the overall network infrastructure is and will be Windows Server for the foreseeable future.
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Usability

Windows Server

Windows Server 4.0
Based on 3 answers
There are simply too many different parts of Windows Server to make it a cohesive piece of software. While some of the newer features found in Windows Server 2012 and 2016 have nice UIs that are logically laid out, there are enough parts of the system that is still based on old code with clunky UIs and confusing options to make Windows Server a particularly user-friendly experience.
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Support

Windows Server

Windows Server 9.7
Based on 4 answers
Microsoft's support is hugely wide-ranging from articles online to having to contact them directly for the more serious issues. In recent years when I have contacted them directly, I have found the support o be excellent as I have found myself connected to very knowledgeable people in the field in which I needed the support. The online support available is vast and I tend to find most of the time that there is always someone out there who has had the same issue as me in the past and knows something about how to resolve it! This is the advantage of using industry standard and long-established systems such as Windows Server.
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Implementation

Windows Server

Windows Server 10.0
Based on 1 answer
Nope, wasn't around for the first installations.
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Alternatives Considered

Windows Server

HP-UX is a great product, but it has a much higher learning curve than Windows server. Even if you're familiar with Linux/Unix, HP-UX will still be very challenging if you've never used it before. HP-UX commands can be different than even other Linux/Unix commands. Whereas everyone has used Windows in their life, making Windows server intuitive and easy to learn.
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Return on Investment

Windows Server

  • Virtually every business application we've ever had to run was based upon Windows server.
  • As stated before, licensing can be a hair-pulling process.
  • Especially when virtualized Windows server performs reasonably well.
  • Backups all your data!
  • Due to its large userbase, it's the most targeted operating system for hackers.
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Pricing Details

Windows Server

General

Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No

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