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Windows 8 Thread, Windows 8 Release Preview and Windows Server 2012 RC Compatibility Cookbook in Technical; You won't find any recipes in this cookbook, but what it does contain is details of new and depreciated features ...
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    Windows 8 Release Preview and Windows Server 2012 RC Compatibility Cookbook

    You won't find any recipes in this cookbook, but what it does contain is details of new and depreciated features in Windows 8 and Server 2012, along with guidelines and best practices for developers to verify the compatibility of their applications.

    There are also a few things that may be useful for network managers to know about such as howto install .NET Framework 3.5 without accessing Windows Update (p22), support for legacy DirectX 9 graphics cards (p78), file associations (p13) and booting from VHDs on SSDs (p107).

    Download / Online Version

    If you don't feel like reading through all 127 pages, there's a good summary here.


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    Michael's Avatar
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    Reading the Summary (towards the bottom of the page), the only thing Windows 8 has over Windows 7 is Application Reliability, excluding Metro of course. This really doesn't sell Windows 8 at all!

    The other thing that's confusing is Microsoft have defaulted to .NET 4.5 and .NET 3.5 has to be 'installed' if requested by an application. I was under the impression Windows 7 automatically served application requests for applications requiring .NET 1.1 to 3.5, without having to install anything. Only .NET 4.0 for SIMS.net for example needs installing on top.

    And as for Windows Server 2012, it won't support applications fully unless they're also GUIless compliant. This will probably take developers years to catch up with... I can imagine a lot of networks being setup with Windows Server 2008 R2 for GUI applications and Windows Server 2012 for everything else.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    Reading the Summary (towards the bottom of the page), the only thing Windows 8 has over Windows 7 is Application Reliability, excluding Metro of course. This really doesn't sell Windows 8 at all!

    The other thing that's confusing is Microsoft have defaulted to .NET 4.5 and .NET 3.5 has to be 'installed' if requested by an application. I was under the impression Windows 7 automatically served application requests for applications requiring .NET 1.1 to 3.5, without having to install anything. Only .NET 4.0 for SIMS.net for example needs installing on top.

    And as for Windows Server 2012, it won't support applications fully unless they're also GUIless compliant. This will probably take developers years to catch up with... I can imagine a lot of networks being setup with Windows Server 2008 R2 for GUI applications and Windows Server 2012 for everything else.

    I can see why they have done it as the .NET stack has become huge and unweildly, just look at how long the security updates for it take. By pulling the earlier versions they are probably tightening security by pulling out some attack vectors and getting removing a lot of the stack from the initial load up. It should also cut down updates as there will be no need to patch every single one of the old frameworks and do the inevitable interminably long recompile each time.

    Saying that for W8 I hope the have the option to leave the lot in as the hassel of .NET frameworks was a big reason to ditch XP in the first place given the more modern ones had everythign built in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    Saying that for W8 I hope the have the option to leave the lot in as the hassel of .NET frameworks was a big reason to ditch XP in the first place given the more modern ones had everythign built in.
    Exactly, this is what I'm getting at. There haven't been an unreasonable number of .NET Framework patches, bearing in mind Windows 7 includes all the latter service packs, including .NET 3.5 SP1.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    This really doesn't sell Windows 8 at all!
    This document isn't designed to sell Windows 8. Its main purpose is to help developers get their applications ready for Windows 8.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    Reading the Summary (towards the bottom of the page), the only thing Windows 8 has over Windows 7 is Application Reliability, excluding Metro of course.
    There are literally hundreds (if not thousands) of changes in Windows 8. When Microsoft released Windows 7 they created a product guide that described most of the major new features. I imagine they will do the same for 8. While you are waiting for that, check out the links below (these lists are by no means comprehensive)...

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Features_new_to_Windows_8
    helgeklein.com/blog/2011/08/officially-announced-new-features-in-windows-8/
    www.thomasmaurer.ch/2011/09/hyper-v-version-3-kills-them-all/
    www.aidanfinn.com/?p=11979

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    The other thing that's confusing is Microsoft have defaulted to .NET 4.5 and .NET 3.5 has to be 'installed' if requested by an application.
    As with the GUI in Server 2012, 'NET 3.5 is classed as an on-demand feature. Microsoft have done this to reduce the amount of disk space used by the operating system and limit the potential attack surface (as SYNACK quite rightly pointed out).

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    I was under the impression Windows 7 automatically served application requests for applications requiring .NET 1.1 to 3.5, without having to install anything.
    Correct.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    Only .NET 4.0 for SIMS.net for example needs installing on top.
    .NET 4.5 includes .NET 4.0, so SIMS and other applications should install and run without any issues. There are currently thirteen hotfixes for .NET 4 and that is only going to increase over time. The thing I hate about .NET updates is how long they take to install (another reason to buy SSDs! ), so the less there are the better. I wish MS would include a way to slipstream them into WIM files.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    This will probably take developers years to catch up with...
    Very true, although I would have thought it would be in software developers best interests to make their server apps work without a GUI especially as cloud computing becomes more popular and admins have to deal with an ever increasing number of VMs. Think about how easy it will be to deploy and manage servers once everything is scriptable via PowerShell.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    I can imagine a lot of networks being setup with Windows Server 2008 R2 for GUI applications and Windows Server 2012 for everything else.
    Keeping 2008 R2 servers around will not be necessary...

    Quote Originally Posted by Microsoft
    When you install Windows Server 2012, you can choose between Server Core Installation and Server with a GUI. The "Server with a GUI" option is the Windows 8 equivalent of the Full installation option available in Windows Server 2008 R2. The "Server Core Installation" option reduces the space required on disk, the potential attack surface, and especially the servicing requirements, so we recommend that you choose the Server Core installation unless you have a particular need for the additional user interface elements and graphical management tools that are included in the "Server with a GUI" option. For this reason, the Server Core installation is now the default. Because you can freely switch between these options at any time later, one approach might be to initially install the Server with a GUI option, use the graphical tools to configure the server, and then later switch to the Server Core Installation option.

    An intermediate state is possible where you start with a Server with a GUI installation and then remove Server Graphical Shell, resulting in a server that comprises the "Minimal Server Interface", Microsoft Management Console (MMC), Server Manager, and a subset of Control Panel. See the “Minimal Server Interface” section of this document for more information.

    In addition, after installation of either option is complete, you can completely remove the binary files for server roles and features that you do not need, thereby conserving disk space and reducing the attack surface still further. See the “Features on Demand” section of this document for more information.

    For the smallest possible installation footprint, start with a Server Core installation and remove any server roles or features you do not need by using Features on Demand. (Source)
    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    for W8 I hope the have the option to leave the lot in as the hassel of .NET frameworks was a big reason to ditch XP in the first place given the more modern ones had everything built in.
    It's very easy to deploy .NET 3.5 in W8.
    Last edited by Arthur; 2nd June 2012 at 03:28 PM.

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    So in a way, W8 is a backwards step as you'll need to install or enable .NET 3.5. You could argue W8 of course will have all the latest security fixes, so I'd still prefer it to be installed by default (on the desktop, not necessarily server).

    As for .NET 4 that was released mid 2010, so 14 updates in 2 years is pretty damn good in my opinion. From a deployment perspective, I'd much rather have all .NETs ready and available without the need of having to install it on top.

    It sounds like .NET 4.5 will be cumulative, exactly like .NET 3.5 SP1 including .NET 2.0 SP2 and .NET 3.0 SP2. What a mess that was when installing on XP! I'd much rather they keep all the editions separate.

    It's true actually, I've never understood why .NET updates take forever to install/update. I can only assume there are many entries in the registry, or many changes made to the registry on each update.

    I can see one major advantage keeping 2008 R2 - no silly Metro interface! I am presuming W8 will still be controlled using ADMX policy files, which should be transferable to a 2008 R2 server.

    I apologise if I sound a bit of a pessimist towards W8/2012, but I just don't get as good a vibe as I did when I first got my hands on W7 and thought 'wow' this is a great product to rival XP and a much better product than Vista!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    I've never understood why .NET updates take forever to install/update. I can only assume there are many entries in the registry, or many changes made to the registry on each update.
    It recompiles for the architecture, this was a big cause of the slowdown hassels when 3.5/4 came out for XP as there was a background service that spent ages compiling the new framework into an optimised form. Later itterations moved a stack of this compilation to install time making them take forever. You are also right that there is lots of reg/file stuff to do also.

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    Server 2012 is a good step forwards imo i could live without metro but other than that there is some good stuff in there. Data dedupelication, hyperv has some nice additions, being able to migrate to and from core at will, storage pools and a few other odds and ends

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    So in a way, W8 is a backwards step as you'll need to install or enable .NET 3.5. You could argue W8 of course will have all the latest security fixes, so I'd still prefer it to be installed by default (on the desktop, not necessarily server).

    As for .NET 4 that was released mid 2010, so 14 updates in 2 years is pretty damn good in my opinion. From a deployment perspective, I'd much rather have all .NETs ready and available without the need of having to install it on top.

    It sounds like .NET 4.5 will be cumulative, exactly like .NET 3.5 SP1 including .NET 2.0 SP2 and .NET 3.0 SP2. What a mess that was when installing on XP! I'd much rather they keep all the editions separate.

    It's true actually, I've never understood why .NET updates take forever to install/update. I can only assume there are many entries in the registry, or many changes made to the registry on each update.

    I can see one major advantage keeping 2008 R2 - no silly Metro interface! I am presuming W8 will still be controlled using ADMX policy files, which should be transferable to a 2008 R2 server.

    I apologise if I sound a bit of a pessimist towards W8/2012, but I just don't get as good a vibe as I did when I first got my hands on W7 and thought 'wow' this is a great product to rival XP and a much better product than Vista!
    surely, having to install .net 3.5 or not will depend on whether you have any apps that won't play with .net 4 ? Or am i being a bit simple.

    As for the whole thing regarding guiless apps, again that depends on what third party software you plan on running on your win2012 servers. I imagine that most software you need to run that isn't covered by a win server role will be updated pretty quickly, free or paid. Given the timing of the release, i think it unlikely that you'll be looking at planning a forklift upgrade of your server to 2012 in 2012 or first quarter of 2013, a phased rollout of win2008 seemed to be quite common. Especially starting off virtualization projects with win2008 and 2003 VM's. Win2012 as a hyper-v host sounds an ideal use case.

    the pessimism i understand, this trying to straddle the world of the tabled and traditional PC on the client does feel more than a little disjointed, but the idea of remote management of servers has been a staple for some time. Taken it to the next level was inevitable.

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    If your school is like ours, and is only moving to Windows 7 this year (or has only moved over recently), then a move to Windows 8 is a long way off - ie. at least 5 years. Very few schools looked at Vista at all, so I suspect the same will happen with 8.

    I also suspect that Windows 7 will be another release that is going to be around longer than Microsoft want. Big businesses don't like updating regularly, so extended support periods will be likely to keep them happy.

    However, the above will mean that those companies that make server side software for education will probably drag their feet over the 'gui-less' aspects of it.

    Most server software is already GUI-less though isn't it? It mostly has a service that runs, and then a GUI to edit stuff. There's no need for the GUI to be used on the server...
    Last edited by localzuk; 2nd June 2012 at 07:13 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    If your school is like ours, and is only moving to Windows 7 this year (or has only moved over recently), then a move to Windows 8 is a long way off - ie. at least 5 years. Very few schools looked at Vista at all, so I suspect the same will happen with 8.

    I also suspect that Windows 7 will be another release that is going to be around longer than Microsoft want. Big businesses don't like updating regularly, so extended support periods will be likely to keep them happy.

    However, the above will mean that those companies that make server side software for education will probably drag their feet over the 'gui-less' aspects of it.

    Most server software is already GUI-less though isn't it? It mostly has a service that runs, and then a GUI to edit stuff. There's no need for the GUI to be used on the server...
    Particularly with the likes of RSAT nowadays.

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