5 Years of waiting for Windows Server 2008 (2)
Part 2: Windows Server 2008 R2
The second release of Windows Server 2008, the R2 beta version, brings about a major change - it works only on 64-bit machines, and this alone triggers some important improvements. Besides that, the power consumption is cut through attentive monitoring and adjustment of the processors utilization levels. This way, the used power is limited to the actual needs of the workload.
Moreover, R2's "Hyper-V" provides better virtual machine management support, and is designed to provide Live Migration (the successor of Quick Migration). This latter feature prevents delays and dropped connections when a virtual machine is transferred to another physical host.
Other new features include Active Directory improvements (such as an AD Recycle Bin for deleted objects), file classification, support for running the OS without the graphical interface, and new versions of IIS (7.5) and Windows PowerShell (2.0).
All this (and more) makes Windows Server 2008 R2 a serious presence on the market, a new competitor for virtualization platforms (such as VMware ESX), and a very useful tool for medium and large companies.