Windows Server Essentials edition is a cloud-connected Windows Server version designed for small businesses with up to 25 users and 50 devices. Microsoft is highly recommending customers to move to Microsoft 365 instead of Windows Server Essentials.
- Virtualization – While Windows Server 2019 Standard can be used as a virtualization guest, it is limited to 2 virtual machines, plus one Hyper-V host per license. Datacenter edition offers unlimited virtual machines plus one Hyper-V host per license.
- Network Virtualization – One of the key roles in Windows Server network virtualization is the Network controller role. Only Datacenter edition offers the Network controller role. Windows Server 2019 Datacenter edition is the only edition that offers Software-defined networking functioanlity.
- Containers – While Windows Server 2019 Standard edition can run unlimited Windows containers, it can only run two Hyper-V containers. Windows Server 2019 Datacenter edition can run unlimited Windows containers AND unlimited Hyper-V containers.
- Hyper-V Security – Using the Host Guardian service, Hyper-V virtual machines can be encrypted. This is only available with Windows Server 2019 Datacenter.
- Storage Replicas – While Windows Server 2019 Standard edition can do Storage Replica, it is limited to 1 partnership and 1 resource group with a single 2 TB volume. Windows Server 2019 Datacenter edition can participate in unlimited Storage Replicas.
- Storage Spaces Direct – The software-defined storage technology in Windows Server 2019 is limited to Windows Server 2019 Datacenter edition. S2D allows you to use locally attached storage that is aggregated into a pool of storage between the members of a Storage Spaces Direct enabled cluster.
- Inherited Activation – While Windows Server 2019 Standard edition can benefit from inherited activation if hosted on Datacenter, Windows Server 2019 Datacenter can be a host or a guest.
- 1.4 GHz 64-bit processor
- Compatible with x64 instruction set
- Supports NX and DEP
- Supports CMPXCHG16b, LAHF/SAHF, and PrefetchW
- Supports Second Level Address Translation (EPT or NPT)
- 512 MB (2 GB for Server with Desktop Experience installation option)
- ECC (Error Correcting Code) type or similar technology, for physical host deployments
- 32 GD Storage
- An Ethernet adapter capable of at least gigabit throughput
- Compliant with the PCI Express architecture specification.
- DVD drive (if you intend to install the operating system from DVD media)
- The following items are not strictly required, but are necessary for certain features:
- UEFI 2.3.1c-based system and firmware that supports secure boot
- Trusted Platform Module
- Graphics device and monitor capable of Super VGA (1024 x 768) or higher-resolution
- Keyboard and Microsoft® mouse (or other compatible pointing device)
- Internet access
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