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Microsoft announces Windows Server 2025 is RTM, ready for preview

Windows Server 2025 RTM Press Release

In a significant development, Microsoft has announced the public preview of Windows Server 2025, now available for download in the Evaluation Center. This release marks the latest in Microsoft's Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) and is slated for general availability later this year. The new version, which integrates user feedback, promises to be the most secure and innovative iteration yet, featuring advanced security protocols, enhanced Azure hybrid capabilities, a robust platform for existing applications and AI workloads, and an updated Windows Server experience.

Key Highlights of Windows Server 2025:

Advanced Security Features

Recognizing the critical importance of cybersecurity, Windows Server 2025 introduces a suite of advanced security enhancements. These include modern identity management with new capabilities in Active Directory, improvements to Server Message Block (SMB) including SMB over QUIC, and Azure Arc-enabled hotpatching for security updates with fewer reboots. These features aim to provide robust protection against various cyber threats, including brute force attacks and spoofing.

Hybrid Innovation

Acknowledging the growing trend towards hybrid and multicloud environments, Windows Server 2025 offers improved hybrid cloud capabilities. Notably, it includes software-defined network (SDN) multisite features for seamless connectivity across multiple locations and enhanced management tools that integrate Azure capabilities into datacenters via Azure Arc. These advancements are designed to support the 81% of hybrid cloud users who, according to a recent survey, expect to maintain their hybrid setups for at least the next five years.

AI, Performance, and Scalability

With the rise of AI and machine learning, Windows Server 2025 caters to these needs by introducing GPU partitioning across virtual machines, live migration, and failover clustering. Additionally, new features such as Network Adaptive Traffic Control (ATC) and Network Health and Usage Dashboard (HUD) aim to reduce network setup times and troubleshooting efforts. Significant improvements in storage performance and Hyper-V scalability are also notable.

Simplified Upgrades

The new version promises easier upgrades via Windows Update, streamlining the transition to Windows Server 2025 for users.

For a detailed overview of these features, Microsoft directs users to Microsoft Learn and their on-demand 2024 Windows Server Summit.

Customer Success Stories

Microsoft also shared success stories from early adopters. CTT – Correios de Portugal is preparing for AI integration, Hokkoku Bank has modernized by moving its on-premises estate to Windows Server, and DICK’s Sporting Goods has enhanced its athlete experience using Azure Arc and Azure Kubernetes Service.

System Center 2025

Alongside Windows Server 2025, Microsoft unveiled System Center 2025, which aims to optimize infrastructure management and maximize the new server’s features. Highlights include Azure Key Vault integration and simplified onboarding to Azure Arc, facilitating large-scale management and self-service lifecycle management from Azure.

Invitation to Try Windows Server 2025

Microsoft invites users to explore the new features of Windows Server 2025, emphasizing the extensive development and refinement based on user feedback over the past 30 years. Interested users can access detailed documentation, watch relevant summit sessions, or view the “What’s ahead for Windows 2025” video for more information.

Download the Windows Server 2025 preview here.

Notes:

  1. This information pertains to a prerelease product subject to substantial changes before its official release. Microsoft provides no express or implied warranties regarding this information.

  2. Data based on a 2023 survey of 197 Windows Server customers using hybrid cloud.

  3. Performance enhancements include up to 70% more IOPs on NVMe SSDs, with significant increases in VM and host memory capacities.