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Windows File Server OS

Posted on 2014-03-24
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Hi All,

I was wondering for OS selection what OS is preferred.

My application is simple, Windows DFS (only 2 nodes so basically mirror) on a closed network serving files to up to 8 clients at a time (these clients need a high file transfer rate at 128k at a times) through 10 gig.

What OS should I choose?  I like Enterprise because I can use more than 32 GB of RAM, but do I really need more than 32 GB?  When I have been running my tests I never see a high usage of RAM, maybe there is a way to turn this on on Enterprise (large file cache)?  My clients are only doing reads so no data is changing...

Right now I need to stay in 2008 and can't move to 2012 for customer requirement reasons.

Thanks!
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Question by:adamc817
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Norm Dickinson earned 2000 total points
ID: 39950816
In your situation it seems to me that the disk array hardware will be more important in terms of speed and availability than the OS version. 32 GB of RAM should be sufficient to handle anything that 8 clients can require for read-only access.
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Author Comment

by:adamc817
ID: 39950834
Hi Norm,

Thanks, is there any documentation I can point to that I can show management that corresponds to this? (Maybe it would save a lot of testing on my side to prove it).

Thanks!
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by:Norm Dickinson
ID: 39950866
This comparison shows that the only thing lacking from Standard edition is clustering, so if that is a consideration, you would want to go to DataCenter or Enterprise.
http://www.techotopia.com/index.php/Windows_Server_2008_Editions_and_System_Requirements

Standard also limits you to one DFS root. See the attached PDF.
WS-Brand-Pages---Editions-Compar.pdf
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 39951056
It doesn't matter.  Buy TWO 2012 standard Licenses, install 2008 Enterprise.  The 2012 licenses give downgrade rights to Enterprise since the feature sets are now identical other then additional VM licenses included.  There's really no point in NOT installing enterprise if anyone is going to give you the slightest argument for it.
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Expert Comment

by:Tony Giangreco
ID: 39952991
I agree with Lee. Stay with 2008 Enterprise and you are probably the most compatible with most hardware and software technologies because it's been out for a while and it's very dependable.
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by:Norm Dickinson
ID: 39953099
Agreed that it probably makes a lot more sense to go with the Enterprise edition in the long run. There is really no downside to it.
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Author Comment

by:adamc817
ID: 39953262
>>Right now I need to stay in 2008 and can't move to 2012 for customer requirement reasons.


So 2012 is not an option, also in 2008 Enterprise is a bit more expensive than standard and there is no need for 128 GB of RAM when standard can only use 32, so there is some $$ difference.  I am just not sure Enterprise is worth the upgrade.
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by:Norm Dickinson
ID: 39953282
If it were the same price it would be an easy decision but it is likely not going to be worth a lot of effort or a lot of money to have Enterprise vs. Standard in your case. I believe what Lee W was saying is that if you buy 2012 Standard, it gives you the license for 2008 Enterprise if you prefer to install that instead. If you are buying the server OS now, that may be the way to go.
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Author Comment

by:adamc817
ID: 39953375
oh snap, awesome! nice
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 39954539
You buy 2012 Standard via Volume license and you get downgrade rights to 2008 Standard OR Enterprise AND the media and keys.
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Expert Comment

by:Norm Dickinson
ID: 39954549
Hopefully we have answered your question at this stage, best of luck to you and let us know if you have anything else we can help with!
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by:Tony Giangreco
ID: 39955921
Any other questions regarding this posting?
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