What’s new with Microsoft Windows Server 2016? | FileCloud

December 20, 2016

Developed and launched by Microsoft under the Windows NT family of OS, Windows Server 2016 works best with Windows 10 version and above. New and upgraded version of the previous Server 2012, the 2016 version has introduced many innovations and changes that only add on to the functionality of your system. Let us discuss some […]


Developed and launched by Microsoft under the Windows NT family of OS, Windows Server 2016 works best with Windows 10 version and above. New and upgraded version of the previous Server 2012, the 2016 version has introduced many innovations and changes that only add on to the functionality of your system. Let us discuss some of the major changes in the Windows Server 2016.

Microsoft Windows Server 2016 Updates
Microsoft Windows Server 2016 Updates

Nano Server

Nano server is an installation option offered by Windows Server 2016 allows you to use the full serve GUI (graphic user interface). The Nano Server even offers a disk footprint of about 400 to 500 MB that saves a lot on disk space (a 92% reduction in the installation footprint when compared to previous versions.). You also get an extensive range of web hosting services that help you manage the workload faster. All your Nano Server workload such as Hyper-V, IIS, failover clustering etc. now run as separate containers similar to that of the Docker method discussed later.


The Hyper-V feature earlier was just confined to adding virtual hardware and adjusting the RAM to a virtual system. However, the new and improved Hyper-V server offered by the SERVER 2016 has some additional features such as compatible and connected stand-by option, discreet device assignment and intelligent encryption support that offer a more comprehensive and robust support program. The Hyper-V also provides some solid host resource protection for the OS where you can add “hot add” virtual hardware, i.e. the VMs can be configured while they’re running online. Add an extra NIC or network interface card for adding an extra virtual network on your virtual computer and you’re set.

Windows Defender

The new and upgraded Windows Server 2016 features a built in anti-malware that is enabled by default unlike the previous versions where the user had to install and configure the program manually. This creates a powerful pre-installed defence system in your network that looks out for any kind of suspicious malware or threat. The Windows Defender feature of the Windows Server 2016 version is better equipped in dealing with malicious threats and viruses than any of its predecessors. This defender can run without the support of the GUI, you can even install it using the Wizard setup file.

Data Deduplication 

Sick of cleaning your hard drive getting rid of the duplicate files and other junk?! Well, the Data Deduplication feature of the Windows Server 2016 helps you with that. Using the Data Deduplication service you can control the creation of duplicate blocks thereby increasing your device’s overall storage capacity. With this feature you can also compress files faster reducing the storage capacity utilization by a 2:1 ratio. Other than that you can also boost the download speed, reduce bandwidth usage and even ensure faster data transfer if you combine the data deduplication service with Branch Cache.

Storage Services

The major storage based facilities provided by the upgraded version of the Windows Server are Central Storage QoS policies (quality of service), Storage Replicas, and Storage Space Direct features. The Storage Space Direct program introduced by Windows Server 2016 allows you to clean up the system better, removing all the unnecessary files and extend your disk space. The Storage Replica on the other hand allows a more synchronous and block-level replication of data between servers. Although it cannot multitask, the program only replicates snippets of information that can be altered with during the transfer. And the QoS helps you formulate the storage management policies better.


The Active Directory Federation System ensures better security of your Windows Server 2016 by adopting a claims (token) based system for scrutinizing the identity of any device. You can now configure ADFS settings to include users who aren’t using this program as well. For instance, non-AD directories such as the X.500 complaint and Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) from the SQL database can be authenticated by a simple ADFS configuration. This OpenID connection enables you to expand your network and allow a greater influx of information from various sources.


Containers are pretty common in the LINUX/UNIX interface and now, Microsoft is planning on using this technology. Currently the Windows team is working on the Docker development of their new Server 2016 and have introduced quite efficient Docker based containers in the system. Containers basically help you manage your work load better- you can now isolate your projects and reduce their dependence by storing them in separate compartments. There are two kinds of containers namely, windows server container and Hyper-V containers. While the Windows Server container is for smaller security or storage issues of minor projects, the Hyper-V program enables high end compartmentalization that is better suited for major projects.

iSCSI Target Server

The iSCSI Target Server is another Server 2016 program that uses the Internet SCSI standard for blocking storage facilities to other servers or apps that are sharing the same network connection with you. This update has only enhanced the functionality of the earlier 2012 version- you now get a consistent continuous storage that was earlier only available to high tech SAN devices. Thanks to iSCSI feature you can now deploy as many diskless devices as you want! This target server also offers high end continuous support in testing stage of apps that are yet to be launched in the SAN devices.

Windows PowerShell Direct 5.0

While in the earlier versions you had the Hyper-V perform the general Windows PowerShell services and administers the VMs, now you get to communicate directly with the hosts without having to bother with any of the extra coding and data transfer. You can just create and invoke a new VM name parameter to run the operation. PowerShell also doesn’t require any networking or firewall configurations. The Windows PowerShell 5.0 also includes a lot of additional security benefits that would only enhance the overall functionality of your device.

The bottom line

Windows Server 2016 is a smartly engineered program that offers the best visuals, computing facilities and security

Author: Rahul Sharma

By Team FileCloud