Server 2022 Now Available

By Ted Dasher Jr., Enterprise Architect

It is no secret that Windows 11 was released on October 5th and that Server 2022, along with new versions of SQL server happened around the same time. What is a bit of a secret is that Server 2022 was stealthily released in mid-August with general availability for new installs on the first of September. This is easily the quietest release of a major product from Microsoft that I can remember.

We are currently in an unusual time when three different versions of Windows server are in mainstream support, but this will not last long. A lot of people will be surprised to learn that Windows Server 2016 will drop from mainstream support in mid-January 2022. When combined with the many 2008 and 2012 servers still in production, this will represent a vast number of servers for which obtaining support from Microsoft will range from extremely expensive to simply unavailable.

As has been the case with recent server editions from Microsoft, Server 2022 will be available in Essentials, Standard, and Datacenter editions with pricing unchanged. Also unchanged is the ability to install the OS in core mode without a GUI or with the full GUI. Windows Server 2022 IOT is also released but is a substantially different product despite the similar name.

If you have been diligent about upgrading your servers, you will be happy to know that in-place upgrades from 2016 or 2019 to 2022 are supported! This will simplify things greatly, although it should be stressed that you should only do this after obtaining a current backup of any servers being upgraded.

There are many substantial changes in Server 2022, but they are almost exclusively extensions of what is possible with 2016 and 2019 and focus primarily on the areas of improving security of the OS and extending the hybrid cloud/on-prem capabilities. A few examples include the initial support for TLS 1.3 and support for DNS over https. The only major functionality being removed that I know of is the discontinuation of a free Hyper-V version. Microsoft is directing those needing virtualization hosting from Windows server to either one of the full OS versions or Azure Stack HCI instead. In the meantime, the Hyper-V 2019 product support is being extended through 2029.

I have installed an instance of 2022 in my test domain and found there to be no obvious differences working with it versus 2016 or 2019. As with 2019, there is no new Forest or Domain functional level available, the highest available is still 2016. If you are interested in trying it out, here is a link to an excellent article detailing several ways of downloading the ISO as well as a more detailed review of changes in functionality from previous versions:

We have been busy helping our clients move from 2008 and 2012 to 2016/2019 for several years and will be happy to help you as well. We won’t even judge you if you still have 2000 or 2003 floating around. We are here to help you succeed.

As always Dasher and the Converge family of companies are ready to help you if you have any questions or would like help with navigating this change. Please reach out us by going to our Contact Us page.