Category Archives: Windows Server

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Announcing Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview Build 17666

Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are pleased to release a new build of the Windows Server vNext Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) release that contains both the Desktop Experience as well as Server Core in all 18 server languages, as well as a new build of the next Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel release.
There are two major areas that we would like you to try out in each preview release and report back any issues:
In-place OS Upgrade (from Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016)
Application compatibility – please let us know if any server roles or applications stops working or fails to function as it used to
What’s New in the Latest Build
Click here to see the full list of new features introduced in earlier builds.
Performance history for Storage Spaces Direct
This build improves the Get-ClusterPerformanceHistory cmdlet to be more scripting-friendly. It’s now convenient to pipe performance history into utility cmdlets like Sort-Object, Where-Object, and Measure-Object so you can quickly find the average or peak value, filter values, plot trend lines, run outlier detection, and more. You can see examples with these cmdlets in the topics linked under “Insider Preview content” on aka.ms/StorageSpacesDirect.
This build adds performance history for the Storage Spaces Direct cache for reads (% hit rate) and writes (% full), as well as the CSV in-memory read cache (% hit rate). These new series are available per-server and in aggregate.
Some performance history series have changed names in this build for greater clarity and consistency—for example, Node.Cpu.Usage is now ClusterNode.Cpu.Usage. Note that this change will result in some blank charts in Windows Admin Center until its next update.
Delimit volume allocation with Storage Spaces Direct
New cmdlets, provided in this build, simplify the management of volumes with delimited allocation. Use Get-StorageScaleUnit to see fault domains; follow associations to/from Get-VirtualDisk to see the current allocation; and set or modify allocation by using friendly names for fault domains. For more details, see the links under “Insider Preview content” on aka.ms/StorageSpacesDirect.
Available Content
Windows Server 2019 Preview is available in ISO format in 18 languages, and in VHDX format in English only. This build and all future pre-release builds will require the use of activation keys during setup. The following keys allow for unlimited activations:
Datacenter Edition
 6XBNX-4JQGW-QX6QG-74P76-72V67
Standard Edition
 MFY9F-XBN2F-TYFMP-CCV49-RMYVH
Windows Server vNext Semi-Annual Preview The Server Core Edition is available in English only, in ISO or VHDX format. The images are pre-keyed –  no need to enter a key during setup.
Symbols are available on the public symbol server – see Update on Microsoft’s Symbol Server blog post and Using the Microsoft Symbol Server. As before, matching Windows Server container images will be available via Docker Hub. For more information about Windows Server containers and Insider builds, click here.
This build will expire December 14th, 2018.
How to Download 
To obtain the Insider software downloads, registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page.  If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.
We value your feedback!
Use your registered Windows 10 Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. Please indicate what build number you are providing feedback on. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Server Insiders space on the Microsoft Tech Communities forum to collaborate, share and learn from experts.
Known Issues
The size of a file according to NTFS and a stream control block can become different from the size according to Cache Manager. This might cause a bug check if a read operation is out of bounds for the file size that Cache Manager has stored.
Inplace OS upgrade: Domain Controllers. During an in-place OS upgrade, Active Directory (AD) Domain Controllers (DC) might not be upgraded correctly. So, back up any AD DCs before performing an in-place OS upgrade.
Editing or creating policies for AppLocker can cause the MMC snap-in to crash when generated rules for a packaged app.
After upgrading the operating system, the AppX database may have corrupted entries, which causes problems for components that use those entries.
Terms of Use
This is pre-release software – it is provided for use “as-is” and is not supported in production environments. Users are responsible for installing any updates made available from Windows Update for as long as this build is available   All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider Program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use, which takes precedence over any license agreement that may be in the product.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,
Dona

Announcing Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview Build 17650

Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are pleased to release a new build of the Windows Server vNext Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) release that contains both the Desktop Experience as well as Server Core in all 18 server languages, as well as a new build of the next Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel release. Please also refer to this recent blog announcement about updates to the Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel.
There are two major areas that we would like you to try out in each preview release and report back any issues:
In-place OS Upgrade (from Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016)
Application compatibility – please let us know if any server roles or applications stops working or fails to function as it used to
What’s New in the Latest Build
Click here to see the full list of new features introduced in earlier builds.
Failover Clustering: File Share Witness
One of the witness options available for failover clustering, File Share Witness, has two new enhancements.
The first enhancement blocks the use of a Distributed File System (DFS) share as a location. Adding a File Share Witness (FSW) to a DFS share can cause stability issues for your cluster, and this configuration has never been supported. So, we added logic to detect if a share uses DFS, and if DFS is detected, Failover Cluster Manager blocks the creation of the witness and displays an error message about not being supported.
The second enhancement enables the use of an FSW for several scenarios that were previously not supported:
Absent or extremely poor Internet access because of a remote location, preventing the use of a cloud witness.
Lack of shared drives for a disk witness. This could be a Storage Spaces Direct hyperconverged configuration, a SQL Server Always On Availability Groups (AG), or an Exchange Database Availability Group (DAG), none of which use shared disks.
Lack of a domain controller connection due to the cluster being behind a DMZ.
A workgroup or cross-domain cluster for which there is no Active Directory cluster name object (CNO). Find out more about these enhancements in the following posts in Server & Management Blogs: Failover Cluster File Share Witness and DFS New File Share Witness Feature in Windows Server 2019
Failover clustering: Moving Clusters between domains
Moving a cluster from one domain to another has always been a daunting task because you must destroy the cluster to move it.  Depending on the roles in the cluster, that role must also be removed and recreated.  The following are two common scenarios:
Company A purchases Company B and must move all servers to Company A’s domain
Main office builds a cluster and ships it to another location
We have added two new PowerShell commandlets to quickly take you from one domain to another without the need to destroy it.  For more information about this new capability, see How to Switch a Failover Cluster to a New Domain in Server & Management blogs.
Storage Replica
Storage Replica (SR) was first released as a technology for Windows Server 2016 Datacenter Edition. SR enables synchronous and asynchronous block replication of volumes between servers or clusters for disaster recovery. SR also enables you to create stretch failover clusters that span two sites, with all nodes staying in sync.
Beginning with Windows Server 2019, responding to customer requests, we’ve added the following improvement to SR:
Storage Replica Standard. SR is available on Windows Server 2019 Standard Edition, not just on Datacenter Edition. When installed on servers running Standard Edition, SR has the following limitations:
– SR replicates a single volume instead of an unlimited number of volumes.
– Volumes can have one partnership instead of an unlimited number of partners.
– Volumes can have a size of up to 2 TB instead of an unlimited size.
We will continue to listen to your feedback and evaluate these settings through our telemetry during Insider previews of Windows Server 2019. These limitations may change several times during the preview phase and at RTM.
For more information about new features for Storage Replica, visit http://aka.ms/StorageReplica.
[ADDED] Remote Desktop Session Host (RDSH)
RD Session Host is a Remote Desktop Services role service that enables users to share Windows-based programs or the full Windows desktop. Users can connect to an RD Session Host server to run programs, save files, and use network resources on that server. Because of a bug, the RDSH role was missing in previous releases of Windows Server 2019 – this build fixes that.
Available Content
The Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview is available in ISO format in 18 languages. This build and all future pre-release builds will require the use of activation keys during setup. The following keys allow for unlimited activations:
Datacenter Edition
 6XBNX-4JQGW-QX6QG-74P76-72V67
Standard Edition
 MFY9F-XBN2F-TYFMP-CCV49-RMYVH
Windows Server vNext Semi-Annual Preview The Server Core Edition is available in English only, in ISO or VHDX format. The images are pre-keyed –  no need to enter a key during setup.
This build will expire July 2nd, 2018.
Symbols are available on the public symbol server – see Update on Microsoft’s Symbol Server blog post and Using the Microsoft Symbol Server. As before, matching Windows Server container images will be available via Docker Hub. For more information about Windows Server containers and Insider builds, click here.
How to Download 
To obtain the Insider software downloads, registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page.  If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.
We value your feedback!
Use your registered Windows 10 Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. Please indicate what build number you are providing feedback on. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Server Insiders space on the Microsoft Tech Communities forum to collaborate, share and learn from experts.
Known Issues
In‑place OS upgrade: Domain Controllers. During an in-place OS upgrade, Active Directory (AD) Domain Controllers (DC) might not be upgraded correctly. So, back up any AD DCs before performing an in-place OS upgrade.
Editing or creating policies for AppLocker can cause the MMC snap-in to crash when generated rules for a packaged app.
After upgrading the operating system, the AppX database may have corrupted entries, which causes problems for components that use those entries.
Terms of Use
All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use, which takes precedence over any license agreement that may be in the product.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,
Dona

Announcing Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview Build 17623

Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are pleased to release the first build of the Windows Server 2019 Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) release that contains both the Desktop Experience as well as Server Core in all 18 server languages, as well as the first build of the next Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel release.
What’s New in Windows Server 2019 Insider Preview Build 17623
For every preview release, we will provide a focus area that we would like you to take a look at and provide us with feedback on. We encourage you to try out any functionality in the release and we welcome your feedback.
Validation for every preview: There are two major areas that we would like you to try out in each preview release and report back any issues:
In-place OS Upgrade (from Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016)
Application compatibility – please let us know if any server roles or applications stops working or fails to function as it used to
Extending your Clusters with Cluster Sets
“Cluster Sets” is the new cloud scale-out technology in this Preview release that increases cluster node count in a single SDDC (Software-Defined Data Center) cloud by orders of magnitude. A Cluster Set is a loosely-coupled grouping of multiple Failover Clusters: compute, storage or hyper-converged. Cluster Sets technology enables virtual machine fluidity across member clusters within a Cluster Set and a unified storage namespace across the “set” in support of virtual machine fluidity.  While preserving existing Failover Cluster management experiences on member clusters, a Cluster Set instance additionally offers key use cases around lifecycle management of a Cluster Set at the aggregate.
Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection 
Available in this preview, we provide deep platform sensors and response actions, providing visibility to memory and kernel level attacker activities and abilities to take actions on compromised machines in response to incidents such as remote collection of additional forensic data, remediating malicious files, terminating malicious processes etc.
If you’re already using Windows Defender ATP – preview these features by simply installing the latest Windows Server preview build and onboard it to Windows Defender ATP.
Otherwise – sign up to Windows Defender ATP trial here
Windows Defender ATP Exploit Guard
Windows Defender ATP Exploit Guard is a new set of host intrusion prevention capabilities. The four components of Windows Defender Exploit Guard are designed to lock down the device against a wide variety of attack vectors and block behaviors commonly used in malware attacks, while enabling enterprises to balance their security risk and productivity requirements.
Attack Surface Reduction (ASR): A set of controls that enterprises can enable to prevent malware from getting on the machine by blocking suspicious malicious files (e.g.: Office docs), scripts, lateral movement, ransomware behavior, and email-based threats
Network protection: Protects the endpoint against web-based threats by blocking any outbound process on the device to untrusted hosts/IP through Windows Defender SmartScreen
Controlled folder access: Protects sensitive data from ransomware by blocking untrusted processes from accessing your protected folders
Exploit protection: A set of vulnerability exploit mitigations (replacing EMET) that can be easily configured to protect your system and applications
To deploy a default set of Exploit Guard policy on Windows Server, you can run the following cmdlets:

Set-MpPreference -EnableControlledFolderAccess Enabled  

Set-MpPreference -EnableNetworkProtection Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids 75668C1F-73B5-4CF0-BB93-3ECF5CB7CC84 -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids 3B576869-A4EC-4529-8536-B80A7769E899 -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids D4F940AB-401B-4EfC-AADC-AD5F3C50688A -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids D3E037E1-3EB8-44C8-A917-57927947596D -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids 5BEB7EFE-FD9A-4556-801D-275E5FFC04CC -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids BE9BA2D9-53EA-4CDC-84E5-9B1EEEE46550 -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids 92E97FA1-2EDF-4476-BDD6-9DD0B4DDDC7B -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled 

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids D1E49AAC-8F56-4280-B9BA-993A6D77406C -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Disabled  

Add-MpPreference -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Ids 01443614-cd74-433a-b99e-2ecdc07bfc25 -AttackSurfaceReductionRules_Actions Enabled  

 

$url = ‘<a href="https://demo.wd.microsoft.com/Content/ProcessMitigation.xml">https://demo.wd.microsoft.com/Content/ProcessMitigation.xml</a>’ 

Invoke-WebRequest $url -OutFile ProcessMitigation.xml 

Write-Host "Enabling Exploit Protection" 

Set-ProcessMitigation -PolicyFilePath ProcessMitigation.xml 

Failover Cluster removing use of NTLM authentication
Windows Server Failover Clusters no longer use NTLM authentication by exclusively using Kerberos and certificate based authentication.  There are no changes required by the user, or deployment tools,  to take advantage of this security enhancement.  It also allows failover clusters to be deployed in environments where NTLM has been disabled.  Launch Windows Feedback for ServerClustering
Shielded virtual machines: Offline mode, Alternate HGS, VMConnect and Shielded Linux support
You can now run shielded virtual machines on Hyper-V hosts that suffer intermittent connectivity to their Host Guardian Service (HGS).  Fallback HGS allows you to configure a second set of URLs for Hyper-V to try if it can’t reach the primary HGS server.  Check out our blog to see how this can be used in a branch office scenario.
Offline mode takes the high availability promise for shielded VMs one step further and allows you to continue to start up a shielded VM even if the host’s primary and fallback HGSs can’t be reached as long as: 1) the VM has been successfully started at least once on that host and 2) the host’s security configuration has not changed since then.  To enable Offline mode, simply run the following PowerShell cmdlet on the Host Guardian Service: Set-HgsKeyProtectionConfiguration –AllowKeyMaterialCaching.
We’ve also made it easier to troubleshoot your shielded virtual machines by enabling support for VMConnect Enhanced Session Mode and PowerShell Direct.  These tools are particularly useful if you’ve lost network connectivity to your VM and need to update its configuration to restore access.  VMConnect and PowerShell Direct will automatically become available for shielded VMs on a Hyper-V host running build 17040 or later.
Finally, for customers that run mixed-OS environments, we now support running Ubuntu, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server inside shielded virtual machines. Try it out and send us your feedback in the Feedback Hub.
Encrypted Network in SDN
Network traffic going out from a VM host can be snooped on and/or manipulated by anyone with access to the physical fabric. While shielded VMs protect VM data from theft and manipulation, similar protection is required for network traffic to and from a VM. While the tenant can setup protection such as IPSEC, this is difficult due to configuration complexity and heterogeneous environments.
Encrypted Networks is a feature which provides simple to configure DTLS-based encryption using the Network Controller to manage the end-to-end encryption and protect data as it travels through the wires and network devices between the hosts It is configured by the Administrator on a per-subnet basis.  This enables the VM to VM traffic within the VM subnet to be automatically encrypted as it leaves the host and prevents snooping and manipulation of traffic on the wire.  This is done without requiring any configuration changes in the VMs themselves.  Try it out and send us your feedback in the Feedback Hub.
Performance history for Storage Spaces Direct
Administrators of Storage Spaces Direct can now get easy access to historical performance and capacity data from their cluster. Did CPU usage spike last night? When did this drive become slow? Which virtual machine used the most memory last month? Is network activity trending up or down? The cluster is pushing 1,000,000 IOPS – is that my new record?
Previously, you’d need external tooling to answer these questions. No more!
Beautiful new charts in Project Honolulu (and new PowerShell cmdlets, for those so inclined) empower you to answer these questions. There’s nothing to install, configure, or start – it’s built-in and always-on. Learn more at https://aka.ms/clusterperformancehistory.
 
Available Content
Windows Server 2019 LTSC Build 17623 is available in ISO format in 18 languages. This build and all future pre-release builds will require use of activation keys during setup. The following keys allow for unlimited activations:
Datacenter Edition
 6XBNX-4JQGW-QX6QG-74P76-72V67
Standard Edition
 MFY9F-XBN2F-TYFMP-CCV49-RMYVH
Windows Server vNext Semi-Annual Build 17623 The Server Core Edition is available in English only, in ISO or VHDX format. The images are pre-keyed –  no need to enter a key during setup.
Symbols are available on the public symbol server – see Update on Microsoft’s Symbol Server blog post and Using the Microsoft Symbol Server. As before, matching Windows Server container images will be available via Docker Hub. For more information about Windows Server containers and Insider builds, click here.
This build will expire July 2nd, 2018.
How to Download 
To obtain the Insider software downloads, registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page.  If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal
It’s all about your feedback! 
The most important part of a frequent release cycle is to hear what’s working and what needs to be improved, so your feedback is extremely valued. Use your registered Windows 10 Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. Please indicate what build number you are providing feedback on. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Server Insiders space on the Microsoft Tech Communities forum to collaborate, share and learn from experts.
Known issues
In‑place OS upgrade: Domain Controllers. During an in-place OS upgrade, Active Directory (AD) Domain Controllers (DC) might not be upgraded correctly. So, back up any AD DCs before performing an in-place OS upgrade.
Editing or creating policies for AppLocker can cause the MMC snap-in to crash when generated rules for a packaged app.
After upgrading the operating system, the AppX database may have corrupted entries, which causes problems for components that use those entries.
Testing of the Windows core may fail because of a timeout while attempting to load the test libraries.
Terms of Use
All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use, which takes precedence over any license agreement that may be in the product.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,
Dona

Announcing Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1803 and RSAT Insider Preview for Windows 10

Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are pleased to release Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1803 to Windows Server Insiders. Also available is the Insider preview package of Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) for Windows 10 Insider build 17110 or higher.
Available Content
Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1803
Remote Server Administration Tools Build 17108
What’s New in RSAT
This preview build of Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) can be installed on Windows 10 Insider build 17110 or higher.
FIXED: DNS server tools are now correctly installed as part of the RSAT package.
FIXED: Shielding data files and template disks can now be created by their respective wizards in the RSAT package.
KNOWN ISSUE: The x86 RSAT package may fail during installation on Windows 10 builds older than 17110, and on builds other than the 171xx series.
What’s New in Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1803
Release Summary
In this iteration, we resolved 430 bugs, as well as the following feature improvements –
Access Control
Major new functionality in this release — we have added Azure Active Directory (AAD) based access control. Using AAD identities, you can configure conditional access policies that require Multi-Factor authentication, device compliance, and more. You can find instructions to configure this in the Azure Active Directory section of the Gateway access documentation.
Known issue with AAD authentication: If you are using a self-signed certificate, AAD authentication will fail in Microsoft Edge. To work around this issue, you must use a valid certificate or choose to trust the self-signed certificate on your machine where you are running the Edge browser.
Logging
We’ve updated the logging schema to include more details for auditing and troubleshooting. Previously, the only details logged were the module, user on the target node, and the PowerShell script or CIM call executed. Now events are logged with these parameters:
Module: which tool triggered the action being logged
CIM call, PowerShell script name, or file uploaded
Gateway from which the action occurred
UserOnGateway: the username used to access the Honolulu gateway
UserOnTarget: the username used to access the target node (if different from the gateway user)
LAPS: Boolean showing whether LAPS was used to connect to the target node
These events are logged on the target node in event channel Microsoft-ServerManagementExperience with event ID 4000.
Resizable Panes and Columns
New UI functionality – resizable UI elements! You can now resize the follow components:
Tool menu
Details pane
Overview
All datagrid and datatree columns (Grids that support grouping are not yet supported.)
Tool Improvements
Finally, we have added new functionality to the following existing tools:
Certificates – Added Request & Renew certificate functionality.
Files – Download or upload whole folders with automatic zip and unzip.
Processes
o   Added more information in the details pane: Services, Handles, and Modules.
o   Processes are now grouped by default when managing the local Windows 10 PC.
Services – View and edit additional settings such as startup parameters, user account, and recovery options.
Storage Volumes – Ability to enable quotas using the File Server Resource Manager (FSRM) role service
Updates – The update tool now respects the WSUS setting in your environment and gives you the option to check online for updates as in the desktop tool.
Hyper-Converged Infrastructure
The Hyper-Converged Cluster connection includes several significant new features in 1803, including:
Storage jobs like repair and rebalance are now visible directly on the objects they affect:
You can toggle deduplication and compression on/off for each volume with one click:
…and more!
To learn more about what’s new for Hyper-Converged Infrastructure, check out this video.
Hyper-Converged Cluster Known Issues
You will need a recent Windows Server Insider build to create an HCI cluster.
Storage jobs sometimes say they started in the year 1601. This is unlikely to be correct and is being investigated. Although they can run long, storage jobs generally finish within a few hours of when they start.
The checkbox for deduplication and compression in the ‘Create volume’ pane may be disabled even if the Data Deduplication feature is installed. If this happens, the workaround is to use the rocker switch on the Volume page to enable deduplication and compression.
When filtering the Inventory grid, the count of items does not update.
Microsoft Update
We have built the foundation for Honolulu to be updated via Microsoft Update. If you do not have the “Give me updates for other Microsoft products when I update Windows” setting enabled on the machine, the Honolulu installer will give the choice to toggle it during deployment.
How to Download 
To obtain the Insider software downloads, registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page.  If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.
It’s all about your feedback! 
The most important part of a frequent release cycle is to hear what’s working and what needs to be improved, so your feedback is extremely valued. Use your registered Windows 10 Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. Please indicate what build number you are providing feedback on. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Server Insiders space or the Windows Server Management – Project Honolulu space on the Microsoft Tech Communities forum to collaborate, share and learn from experts.
Terms of Use
All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use, which takes precedence over any license agreement that may be in the product.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,
Dona

Announcing Windows Server Insider Preview Build 17074

Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are releasing Windows Server Insider Preview Build 17074 to Windows Insiders. This build is a preview build of the next Semi-Annual Channel release of Windows Server. For more information on the Semi-Annual channel, please see the Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel overview
Available Content
Server Insiders have the choice of Server Core Edition in ISO or VHDX format. The images are pre-keyed – no need to enter a key during setup.
Symbols are available on the public symbol server – see Update on Microsoft’s Symbol Server blog post and Using the Microsoft Symbol Server. As before, matching Windows Server container images will be available via Docker Hub. For more information about Windows Server containers and Insider builds, click here.
This Server Insider pre-release build will expire on July 2nd, 2018. For the best experience, the Windows Server team recommends a clean install.
What’s New in Build 17074 for Windows Server
Storage Spaces Direct (S2D)
In this preview build we continue to expand and simplify the hardware for Storage Spaces Direct.  SCSI Enclosure Services (SES) is no longer required for Storage Spaces Direct to be compatible, this unlocks a breath of new hardware which was not capable of running S2D.  Storage Spaces Direct now also supports Persistent Memory (aka. Storage Class Memory), this unlocks a new class of extremely low latency storage which is incredibly interesting in particular as a caching device.  Storage Spaces Direct now also supports Direct-connect SATA devices to AHCI controller, again this will expand the hardware ecosystem compatible with S2D as well as unlock a new class of low cost hardware.  In this preview we have also enabled the Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV) Cache is enabled by default, which delivers an in-memory write-through cache that can dramatically boost VM performance.

Failover Clustering
In this preview we have introduced enhancements to Azure enlightened Failover Clusters, with enhanced eventing on host maintenance events and nodes about to be in host maintenance are excluded from placement.  By making high availability software running inside of an Azure IaaS VM be aware of maintenance events of the host, it can help deliver the highest levels of availability for your applications.

Dedup support for ReFS and Storage Spaces Direct
How to Download 
To obtain the Insider software downloads, registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page.  If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.
It’s all about your feedback! 
The most important part of a frequent release cycle is to hear what’s working and what needs to be improved, so your feedback is extremely valued. Use your registered Windows 10 Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. Please indicate what build number you are providing feedback on.
Known issues with Windows Server build 17074
Testing of the Windows core may fail because of a timeout while attempting to load the test libraries.
Terms of Use
All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use, which takes precedence over any license agreement that may be in the product.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,
Dona

Announcing Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1712 Build 05002

Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are releasing Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1712 Build 05002 to Windows Server Insiders.
Project Honolulu is a flexible, lightweight browser-based customer-deployed platform and solution for Windows Server management scenarios for troubleshooting, configuration and maintenance. Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1712 Build 05002 is now available to Insiders before the public.
What’s New in Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1712 Build 05002
We’ve added a couple top requested features in Virtual Machines and continued with the performance enhancements that lead to faster load times and page rendering.
Virtual Machines
Based on high customer request, we now support viewing and changing VM settings while a VM is running, similar to how you can in Hyper-V Manager. On Generation 2 VMs, you can change general settings, memory setting, checkpoint setting and add disks and network adapters.
You can also enable nested virtualization when creating a VM, or from the processor settings of an existing (stopped) VM. This is functionality that was previously only accessible from the command line.
Events
Administrative events are now displayed.
Performance improvements
The new data grid control has been added to all tools except the HCI solution and Storage Replica.
We have started rolling out a new tree control with the same scale and performance improvements as the new data grid. The new tree control is implemented in the Files and Registry tools.
How to Download 
To obtain the Insider software downloads, registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page.  If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.
Known Issues with Project Honolulu Technical Preview 1712 Build 05002
There are no new known issues specific to this release. You can find the complete list of known issues in Project Honolulu here.
If you encounter bugs please post on the Project Honolulu space on Windows Server Tech Community.
Terms of Use
All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use, which takes precedence over any license agreement that may be in the product.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,
Dona

Announcing Windows Server Insider Preview Build 17046

Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are releasing Windows Server Insider Preview Build 17046 to Windows Server Insiders. This build is the second preview build of the next Semi-Annual Channel release of Windows Server. For more information on the Semi-Annual channel, please see the Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel overview
Available Content
Server Insiders have the choice of Server Core Edition in ISO or VHDX format. The images are pre-keyed –  no need to enter a key during setup.
Symbols are available on the public symbol server – see Update on Microsoft’s Symbol Server blog post and Using the Microsoft Symbol Server. As before, matching Windows Server container images will be available via Docker Hub. For more information about Windows Server containers and Insider builds, click here.
This Server Insider pre-release build will expire on July 2nd, 2018. For the best experience, the Windows Server team recommends a clean install.
What’s New in Build 17046 for Windows Server
There are no new features to announce for this build.
How to Download 
To obtain the Insider software downloads, registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page.  If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.
It’s all about your feedback! 
The most important part of a frequent release cycle is to hear what’s working and what needs to be improved, so your feedback is extremely valued. Use your registered Windows Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. Please indicate what build number you are providing feedback on.
Known issues with Windows Server build 17046
[NEW] Dynamic disks fail I/O with STATUS_INVALID_DEVICE_REQUEST, resulting in failures to mount or format a volume. The contents of an affected volume will be available after updating to a build that fixes this issue, so reformatting and restoring data from backup is not necessary.
Upgrading to recent pre-release builds of Windows Server is not currently an option. However, upgrading will be supported in the future.
The Health Attestation CSP fails with error message 500 when attempting to get a certificate.
Data corruption may occur on some NVM Express (NVMe) solid-state drives (SSD) if scatter-gather list (SGL) functionality is enabled.
The base filtering engine (BFE) service may fail to start, which prevents the Windows Defender firewall (MpsSvc service) from starting.
A system crash may occur because of a kernel security check failure (bug check 0x139) from a corrupt list entry in a deferred free pool.
Hyper-V isolated containers will fail to start with an error of “The description string for parameter reference (%1) could not be found. (0x3ab6)”. Users can work around this by temporarily disabling our cloning optimization by creating a registry key and rebooting or restarting the vmcompute service.
reg ADD “HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows NTCurrentVersionVirtualizationContainers” /v TemplateVmCount /t REG_DWORD /d 0
Although installation will continue successfully, the product key will not activate.
 Terms of Use
All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use, which takes precedence over any license agreement that may be in the product.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,
Dona

Windows Subsystem for Linux on Windows Server

The Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) is available in Windows Insider builds of Windows Server. Now developers and application administrators can run tools they use in Linux environments alongside Cmd and PowerShell.
If you want to jump straight in, the installation guide is available here.
Why include WSL on Windows Server?
We want Windows, including Windows Server, to be a great place for developers. We know developers, system administrators, people managing services and people building services all occasionally need tools available on Linux.  Many more would like to run Linux tools as part of their workflow as a matter of convenience.
Previously, there were a few options:
Run something like Cygwin and rely on Win32 ports of common GNU tools.
Cygwin is a great toolset but it runs into issues when using tools that haven’t been ported to Windows. Many tools simply aren’t available. This is especially common when trying to build and run Ruby & Java solutions, which utilize some Linux-only Gems, libraries and components.
The tools available through Cigwin and other Win32 ports are also notorious for being out of date – which is understandable since updating them requires recompiling them for Windows. For Windows users, however, this is both inconvenient and often leads to troublesome compatibility issues when running, building or deploying software.
Use Linux in a virtual machine.
Virtual machines are designed for production workloads on Windows Server. They aren’t ideal for things closely tied to the Windows Server host. If you need basic Linux command-line tools integrated with their Windows system, a virtual machine will be cumbersome.
This is where running Linux on WSL provides value: WSL runs unmodified Linux (ELF64) binaries natively. It can install and run almost any Linux command-line tool integrated in Windows.
With the additions of WSL and Linux containers with Hyper-V isolation, Windows Server offers a wide variety of Linux options that make it a great place and platform for modern developers.
If you’re a server engineer that needs to run node.js, Ruby, Python, Perl, Bash scripts or other tools that expect Linux behaviors, environment or filesystem-layout, the ability to install and run Linux with WSL expands the tools at your disposal on Windows Server.
What this isn’t — WSL is not a Linux server
Just as with WSL on Windows Client, you can run daemons and jobs like MySQL, PostgreSQL, sshd, etc., via an interactive shell, but you cannot currently use WSL to run persistent Linux services, daemons, jobs, etc. as background tasks.
For these sorts or tools, read more about Linux containers with Hyper-V isolation from the Build 2017 announcement.
How do I get started using WSL on Server?
Windows Subsystem for Linux arrived in Windows Server Insider Build 16237. Follow our new Windows Server WSL Installation Instructions to get started running Linux alongside Cmd and PowerShell on your Servers.
Feel free to comment below or reach out to Sarah and Rich via Twitter.