Windows Server 2008 R2

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Windows Server 2008 R2
A version of the Windows NT operating system
Windows logo - 2006.svg
Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter.png
Screenshot of Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter Service Pack 1
Developer Microsoft
Source model Closed source / Shared source
Released to
July 22, 2009
October 22, 2009[1]
Latest release 6.1 (Build 7601: Service Pack 1) / February 22, 2011; 5 years ago (2011-02-22)[2]
Update method Windows Update, Windows Server Update Services, SCCM
Platforms x64, Itanium
Kernel type Hybrid
License Commercial software (Retail, volume licensing, Microsoft Software Assurance)
Preceded by Windows Server 2008 (2008)
Succeeded by Windows Server 2012 (2012)
Official website
Support status
Mainstream support ended on 13 January 2015.[3]
Extended support ends on 14 January 2020.
Articles in the series

Windows Server 2008 R2 is a server operating system produced by Microsoft. It was released to manufacturing (RTM) on July 22, 2009[4] and launched on October 22, 2009.[5] According to the Windows Server Team blog, the retail availability was September 14, 2009.[6] It is built on Windows NT 6.1, the same kernel used with the client-oriented Windows 7. It is the first 64-bit-only operating system released from Microsoft. Version enhancements include new functionality for Active Directory, new virtualization and management features, version 7.5 of Microsoft IIS Web Server and support for up to 256[7] logical processors.

There are seven editions: Foundation, Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter, Web, HPC Server, Itanium and Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 (Essentials Edition).


Microsoft introduced Windows Server 2008 R2 at the 2008 Professional Developers Conference as the server variant of Windows 7.

On January 7, 2009, a beta release of Windows Server 2008 R2 was made available to subscribers of Microsoft's TechNet and MSDN programs, as well as those participating in the Microsoft Connect program for Windows 7. Two days later, the beta was released to the public via the Microsoft Download Center.[8]

On April 30, 2009, the release candidate was made available to subscribers of Microsoft's TechNet and MSDN.[9] On May 5, 2009, the release candidate was made available to the general public via the Microsoft download center.[10]

According to Windows Server Division WebLog,[11] the following are the dates of the year 2009 when Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 has been made available to various distribution channels:

  • OEMs received Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM in English and all Language Packs on July 29. The remaining languages were available around August 11.
  • ISV (Independent software vendor) and IHV (Independent hardware vendor) partners have been able to download Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM from MSDN starting on August 14.
  • IT Professionals with TechNet Subscriptions were able to download Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM and obtain product keys for in English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish beginning August 14 and all remaining languages beginning August 21.
  • Developers with MSDN Subscriptions have been able to download and obtain product keys for Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM in English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish starting August 14 and all remaining languages starting August 21.
  • Microsoft Partner Program Gold/Certified Members were able to download Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM through the Microsoft Partner Program (MPP) Portal on August 19.
  • Volume License (VL) customers with an existing Software Assurance (SA) license were able to download Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM on August 19 via the Volume License Service Center (VLSC).
  • Volume License customers without a Software Assurance (SA) license were able to purchase Windows Server 2008 R2 through Volume Licensing by September 1.

Additionally, qualifying students have been able to download Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM Standard Edition in 15 languages from the Microsoft Imagine program.[12]

Microsoft has announced that Server 2008 R2 will be the last version of Windows supporting the Itanium architecture.

New features[edit]

A reviewer guide published by the company describes several areas of improvement in version R2.[13] These include new virtualization capabilities (Live Migration, Cluster Shared Volumes using Failover Clustering and Hyper-V), reduced power consumption, a new set of management tools and new Active Directory capabilities such as a "recycle bin" for deleted AD objects. IIS 7.5 has been added to this release which also includes updated FTP server services. Security enhancements include the addition of DNSSEC support for DNS Server Service (note: even though DNSSEC as such is supported, only one signature algorithm is available[14] (#5 / RSA/SHA-1). Since many zones use a different algorithm - including the root zone - this means that in reality Windows still can't serve as a recursive resolver) and encrypted clientless authenticated VPN services through DirectAccess for clients using Windows 7. The DHCP server supports a large number of enhancements[15] such as MAC address-based control filtering, converting active leases into reservations or Link Layer based filters, IPv4 address exhaustion[clarification needed] at scope level[clarification needed], DHCP Name protection for non-Windows machines to prevent name squatting, better performance through aggressive lease database caching, DHCP activity logging, auto-population of certain network interface fields, a wizard for split-scope configuration, DHCP Server role migration using WSMT, support for DHCPv6 Option 15 (User Class) and Option 32 (Information Refresh Time). The DHCP server runs in the context of the Network Service account which has fewer privileges to reduce potential damage if compromised.

Windows Server 2008 R2 supports up to 64 physical processors[16] or up to 256 logical processors per system. (Note:Only the Datacenter and Itanium editions can take advantage of the capability of 64 physical processors. Enterprise, the next-highest edition after those two, can only use 8.)[17] When deployed in a file server role, new File Classification Infrastructure services allow files to be stored on designated servers in the enterprise based on business naming conventions, relevance to business processes and overall corporate policies.[18]

Server Core includes a subset of the .NET Framework, so that some applications (including ASP.NET web sites and Windows PowerShell 2.0) can be used.

Performance improvement was a major area of focus for this release; Microsoft has stated that work was done to decrease boot time, improve the efficiency of I/O operations while using less processing power, and generally improve the speed of storage devices, especially iSCSI.

Active Directory has several new features when raising the forest and domain functional levels[19] to Windows Server 2008 R2. When raising the domain function level, two added features are Authentication Mechanism Assurance and Automatic SPN Management. When raising the forest functional level, the Active Directory recycle bin feature is available and can be enabled using the Active Directory Module for Powershell.[20]

Service Pack[edit]

On February 9, 2011, Microsoft officially released the final release (RTM) of Service Pack 1 (SP1) for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 to OEM partners. Apart from bug fixes, it introduces two new major functions, RemoteFX and Dynamic Memory. RemoteFX enables the use of graphics hardware in order to include support for 3D graphics in a Hyper-V based VM. Dynamic Memory makes it possible for a VM to only allocate as much physical RAM as is needed temporarily for its execution. On February 16 Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 became available for MSDN and TechNet Subscribers as well as Volume License customers. As of February 22, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 is generally available for download via the Microsoft Download Center and available on Windows Update. It has a version number of "6.1.7601.17514.101119-1850".[21]

System requirements[edit]

System requirements for Windows Server 2008 R2 are as follows:[22]

1.4 GHz x86-64 or Itanium 2 processor
Minimum: 512 MB RAM (may limit performance and some features)
Recommended: 2 GB RAM
Maximum: 8 GB RAM (Foundation), 32 GB RAM (Standard), or 2 TB RAM (Enterprise, Datacenter and Itanium-Based Systems)
Super VGA (800 x 600) or higher
Disk Space Requirements
Minimum (editions higher than Foundation): 32 GB or more
Minimum (Foundation edition) 10 GB or more.
Computers with more than 16 GB of RAM require more disk space for paging and dump files.[22]
DVD drive, keyboard and mouse, Internet access (Internet access is optional, but required for updates and online activation)


Windows Server 2008 R2 edition comparison chart[23]
Features Foundation Standard Web HPC Enterprise Datacenter Itanium
Maximum RAM on x86-64 8 GB 32 GB 32 GB 256 GB 2 TB 2 TB 2 TB
Maximum physical CPUs 1 4 4 4 8 64 64
Failover cluster nodes (Nodes) N/A N/A N/A N/A 16 16 8
Cross-file replication (DFS-R) No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes[24]
Fault tolerant memory sync No No No No Yes Yes Yes
Memory modules: Hot addition No No No No Yes Yes Yes
Memory modules: Hot replacement No No No No No Yes Yes
CPUs: Hot addition No No No No No Yes Yes
CPUs: Hot replacement No No No No No Yes Yes
IAS connection 10 50 No No Unlimited Unlimited 2
Remote Desktop Services connections 50 250 No No Unlimited Unlimited No
RRAS connections 50 250 No 250 Unlimited Unlimited No
Virtual image use rights Forbidden Host + 1 VM 1 VM Host + 1 VM Host + 4 VMs Unlimited Unlimited
Features Foundation Standard Web HPC Enterprise Datacenter Itanium

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ Microsoft. "Windows Server 2008 R2 Lifecycle Policy". Microsoft. Retrieved 2012-09-01. 
  4. ^ Server and Cloud Platform Team (2009-07-22). "Windows Server 2008 R2 Reaches the RTM Milestone!". Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  5. ^ "Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 Timelines Shared at Computex". Microsoft. June 3, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-03. 
  6. ^ Server and Cloud Platform Team (2009-07-22). "When to expect Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM - Windows Server Division WebLog - Site Home - TechNet Blogs". Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  7. ^ "Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter Edition Overview". Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  8. ^ Emil Protalinski. "Windows 7 public beta is available now". 
  9. ^ "Announcing Windows Server 2008 R2 Release Candidate (RC)". Microsoft TechNet. 
  10. ^ "Download Windows Server 2008 R2 RC .iso images (May2009)". Microsoft. 
  11. ^ "Windows Server Division WebLog". Microsoft. 
  12. ^ "Windows Server 2008 R2 on DreamSpark". Microsoft. 
  13. ^ "Windows Server 2008 R2 Reviewers Guide". Microsoft. November 2008. Retrieved 2009-08-31. 
  14. ^ "Understanding DNSSEC in Windows". 2009-10-07. Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  15. ^ "New features in DHCP for Windows Server 2008 R2 / Windows 7". Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  16. ^ "Windows Server 2008 R2: Scalability for the Enterprise Customer". Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  17. ^ "Windows7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 support more than 64 Processors in one System". Microsoft. November 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-06. 
  18. ^ "R2: How Would You Manage Without It?". MSDN Blogs. Retrieved 2009-04-30. 
  19. ^ "Appendix of Functional Level Features". Microsoft Technet. Retrieved 2009-10-06. 
  20. ^ "Server 2008 R2: Active Directory Functional Levels". Praetorian Prefect. Retrieved 2009-10-06. 
  21. ^ "Announcing Availability of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1". 
  22. ^ a b "Windows Server 2008 R2: System Requirements". Retrieved 2011-06-15. 
  23. ^ "Windows Server 2008 R2 Editions Comparison by Technical Specifications". Archived from the original on 22 December 2010. 
  24. ^

External links[edit]