While not the flashiest announcement to come out of Microsoft Ignite 2021, the news that Windows Server 2022 is now available as a preview is one that will be important for customers who continue to keep portions of their key business workloads on-premises.
Windows Server 2022 will be the next release in Microsoft’s Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC). The expectation is that it will be generally available later in 2021.
According to Microsoft, any LTSC release of Windows Server will receive five years of mainstream support and five years of extended support. The LTSC release of Windows Server 2022 provides customers an option with long term servicing and stability that is so important for server workloads and security.
Windows Server 2022 will include several new enhancements over its predecessor, Windows Server 2019.
- Secured-core server: This offers multi-layer threat protection with the hardware, firmware and the operating system working together. This approach is supposed to minimize risk during boot-up from firmware related attacks.
- Hybrid capabilities with Azure: Azure Arc provides a single management portal for on-premises, at the edge and multi-cloud storage. It enables the easy deployment of various Azure management options like Azure Policy, Azure Monitor and Azure Defender for those services.
- Windows Admin Center (WAC): The WAC Version 2103 update is now available in Azure, plus it can still be installed as a stand-alone service as well on a local machine. This update adds enhanced handling for virtual machines and provides a simpler event viewer for managed devices.
Any IT pros that want to try out the preview version of Windows Sever 2022 should preview the new version at the Microsoft Ignite 2021 session titled "Latest Azure Innovation for Windows Server and SQL Server (FS177)."