Microsoft's Nano Server is a very stripped-down version of Windows Server

Microsoft announced today their plans to release a stripped-down version of its Windows Server operating system titled, appropriately enough, Nano Server. The new OS has been made to run "born-in-the-cloud applications and containers."

Nano Server will take up 93% less space on a virtual hard drive compared to Windows Server, according to Microsoft. In their inital tests, Nano Server also had 92% fewer critical bulletins and reboots were cut down by 80%. The company added:

"To achieve these benefits, we removed the GUI stack, 32 bit support (WOW64), MSI and a number of default Server Core components. There is no local logon or Remote Desktop support. All management is performed remotely via WMI and PowerShell. We are also adding Windows Server Roles and Features using Features on Demand and DISM. We are improving remote manageability via PowerShell with Desired State Configuration as well as remote file transfer, remote script authoring and remote debugging. We are working on a set of new Web-based management tools to replace local inbox management tools."

Microsoft is expected to launch the final version of Nano Server alongside the next major version of Windows Server, which should be available sometime in 2016. Preview versions of Windows Server 2016 and Nano Server should launch sometime later this year.

Source: Microsoft

John Callaham