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Server 2012 vs. Windows 7 / 8. What should a newbie choose?

    Question

  • Hi there!

    Am here with a newbie question. Ive been running a Windows Home Server 2003 for several years, and learned alot had great use of it. But the hardware got old, and I wanted to buy a new server.

    So, right now I am running my new server with Windows Server 2012 trail, and I've had quite alot of difficulties. So after getting stuck with a Certificate Autority-something, am starting to really wonder if I'd rather should use Windows 7 or 8 to run my server. Then I dont have to understand all the extra stuff comming with the server edition, but the reason I have this is also to learn how to setup a server.

    What should I do? Everyone I know who's interested in server-management is using Linux, and am allways getting stuck with hours of googling, doing stuff that learn a bunch of, but takes me way too much time.

    I really wanna learn, but am getting a little fed up with getting stuck all the time.

    Just to mention it, am using my server mainly for http, php, mysql and ftp service, running file-sharing over my network, and stuff like that, but really enjoy the more advanced features I had on the server 2003 that I could experiment with.

    What do you think?

    Monday, January 07, 2013 8:28 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    Based on information provided Windows 8 Pro will provide  http, php, mysql and ftp service, running file-sharing over your network.

    Windows 2012 would be to much to handle for you.



    Please help and appreciate others by using these features: "Propose As Answer", "Vote As Helpful" and "Mark As Answer"

    Waqas

    MS(SPM), MS(E&F), MCP, MCT, MCTS, MCITP, MCSE, MCPD, MCSD, MCDBA , Author
    Twitter: @waqas8777
    Linked In: http://www.linkedin.com/in/waqasm1

    Tuesday, January 08, 2013 3:53 AM

All replies

  • If you are not or do not plan on using the more advanced features of Windows Server like Active Directory, DHCP, DNS, etc. on a regular basis (not just playing around to learn) then using Windows Server as your base OS is overkill and probably creating more headaches than necessary.

    Based on your scenario I would suggest going with Windows 8 Pro.  The reasons being that you will have access to all of the features you are currently using or would want to use(IIS for http/ftp hosting, Hyper-V, SQL, etc.) plus some that are not available in Windows Server (media streaming).  Not to mention getting windows 8 Pro will be MUCH cheaper.

    If you want to experiment with server software(either Windows or Linux) you could just load up a VM of your choice and play around all you want. 

    Tuesday, January 08, 2013 3:13 AM
  • Hi,

    Based on information provided Windows 8 Pro will provide  http, php, mysql and ftp service, running file-sharing over your network.

    Windows 2012 would be to much to handle for you.



    Please help and appreciate others by using these features: "Propose As Answer", "Vote As Helpful" and "Mark As Answer"

    Waqas

    MS(SPM), MS(E&F), MCP, MCT, MCTS, MCITP, MCSE, MCPD, MCSD, MCDBA , Author
    Twitter: @waqas8777
    Linked In: http://www.linkedin.com/in/waqasm1

    Tuesday, January 08, 2013 3:53 AM
  • Hi atomprompen,


    Besides the suggestion of using Windows 8 Professional, you may also consider to use Windows Server 2012 Essentials.


    Windows Server 2012 Essentials is the latest version of Windows Small Business Server. Windows Server 2012 Essentials is a flexible, affordable, and easy-to-use server solution designed and priced for small businesses with up to 25 uses and 50 devices that helps them reduce costs and be more productive.


    Also, Windows Home Server has seen its greatest success in small office/home office (SOHO) environments and among the technology enthusiast community. For this reason, Microsoft is combining the features that were previously only found in Windows Home Server, such as support for DLNA-compliant devices and media streaming, into Windows Server 2012 Essentials and focusing our efforts into making Windows Server 2012 Essentials the ideal first server operating system for both small business and home use—offering an intuitive administration experience, elastic and resilient storage features with Storage Spaces, and robust data protection for the server and client computers.


    For more details, please refer to Windows Server 2012 Essentials FAQ.


    We can also download Windows Server 2012 Essentials trial to evaluate it.


    More information:

    Windows Server 2012 Essentials Homepage

    Windows Server 2012 Essentials

    Hosted Windows Server 2012 Essentials


    Hope this helps.


    Jeremy Wu
    TechNet Community Support

    • Proposed as answer by Marius EneMVP Wednesday, January 09, 2013 8:04 AM
    Wednesday, January 09, 2013 6:44 AM
    Moderator
  • Thank you so much for the replies. As Philip and Waqas mentions, for my use, Windows 8 Pro is probably the easiest and the most efficient way to go. I've been running Windows Server 2012 Essentials as a trail on my server for exactly 30 days now, and had some problems with IIS, Domain, Certificate Authority amongst other things. 

    The reason I used HomeServer before, and installed WinServer 2012 now, is that I am eager to learn more. The HomeServer I had running for 7 years gave me tons of experience. And that is one of the reasons I am considering going for a education in System Admin, hopefully with Microsoft products as a basepoint. The problem is that info, tutorials and help is hard to find, and as I mentioned in the first post, no one I know likes Windows, but uses Linux.

    If someone could give me a link, name or a tip on where I can learn more about Windows Servers, I might go for the Essential 2012. Otherwise, I think I'll have more then enough to struggle with, with Win8 Pro.

    Again, thanks alot for all the replies. Its been to great help.

    Wednesday, January 09, 2013 9:44 PM