Windows Server is the name of a server operating system series created by Microsoft. The operating systems are closely related to their consumer Windows counterparts, with server-specific additions.
Windows Server is only slightly different from an ordinary Windows installation on first impression. However, within minutes of using it, you'll realize it's skimmed down by a lot. Windows Server 2003 and 2008 don't have their respective Luna or Aero themes enabled by default, and newer versions of Windows Server have hardly any apps, just the basic accessories and tools you need, and Server Manager, a tool to manage Windows Server servers. Otherwise, Windows Server doesn't have that many interesting features without looking under the hood.
This is a list of Windows Server versions and their home counterparts:
- Windows Server 2003: Windows XP
- Windows Server 2008: Windows Vista
- Windows Server 2008 R2: Windows 7
- Windows Server 2012: Windows 8
- Windows Server 2012 R2: Windows 8.1
- Windows Server 2016: Windows 10, version 1607
- Windows Server 2019: Windows 10, version 1809
- Windows Server 2022: Windows 10, version 20H2
Windows Server 2003, 2008, and 2012 all had R2 expansions that added on to them. As such, Windows Server 2008 R2 resembles Windows 7 and Windows Server 2012 R2 resembles Windows 8.1. Windows Server 2016 and 2019 have the Semi-Annual Channel (SAC), which is upgraded every six months.
In addition, there are currently two development channels in which Server 2022 has been developed:
- Manganese: Only available in Core form. Builds 19551 to 19624.
- Iron: Until build 20201, this was only available in Core form. After that, it's now available in LTSC vNext form. Builds 20150 to the present build. Latest build as of February 18, 2021: Build 20295. From build 20285, the builds identify themselves as Windows Server 2022 in
winver, the build watermark, and on the setup disk.