Microsoft has revealed the first preview version of Windows Server 2025. It is the first server operating system version of the next Windows Server Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) Preview, and is known as Windows Server Insider Preview 26040.
This latest server OS version comes with multiple installation options: the Server Core and Desktop Experience for Datacenter and Standard editions, as well as the Annual Channel for Container Host and Azure Edition (albeit the latter is only available for virtual machine testing).
Microsoft’s Principal Program Manager, Ned Pyle, expressed joy that the Windows Server Insider program had resumed after a winter break. “We’re introducing a new build, new features, and are proud to officially unveil Windows Server 2025. This launch, which promises improvements and new capabilities in server administration and deployment, is certain to attract the attention of systems administrators and IT professionals worldwide.”
The implementation of SMB (Server Message Block) across QUIC alternate ports is a noteworthy feature in this edition. Administrators may choose a custom port option in place of the SMB over QUIC UDP/443 port by default thanks to this functionality. The Windows 11 Insider preview Build 25992 that was released to the Canary channel in November of last year was the first to introduce the idea of SMB alternate ports. This port selection flexibility is a symptom of a move toward more secure and adaptable network arrangements.
Windows Server Insiders
Microsoft also announced the start of flighting for Windows Server insiders in addition to these improvements. This is a big change from the manual deployment procedure of the past since it enables the automated installation of fresh Insider builds via Windows Update. Software developer Artem Pronichkin of Microsoft said, “Admins now have the choice to upgrade using Setup as before, or to utilize Windows Update for the same purpose. It is anticipated that this action would improve server administrators’ efficiency by streamlining the updating procedure.”
In keeping with Windows 11, the Microsoft Windows Server with Desktop Experience is slated to have the same ‘Email & Accounts’ experience, increased coverage for Bluetooth devices, and Wi-Fi Wireless LAN service that is enabled by default for Edge situations. Microsoft does warn that for these functions to work properly, the right hardware and drivers are required.
Downloads of the Windows Server 2025 preview build in ISO and VHDX formats are available to participants in the Windows Server Insider program. On the Windows Insiders for Business web page, new participants may discover information on how to register for the program. This preview release, which is packed with enhancements and new features, is available until September 15, 2024, giving the Insider community plenty of opportunity to provide comprehensive assessment and feedback.