Server Core Roles and Features in 2008 R2

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ServerCore Server Core installations are versatile, secure and highly-optimized installations of Windows Server. Dubbed ‘Windows without Windows’ by some, these installation in Windows Server 2008 R2 are capable of providing more (infrastructural) services than ever! Just like Full installations of Windows Server 2008 R2, depending on the edition of your choice, or budget, the Server Roles and Features installable on a Server Core installation, vary, though.

The table below shows the individual roles and features in fresh Server Core installations of Windows Server 2008 R2, Web (column 1), Standard (column 2), Enterprise (column 3) and Datacenter (column 4) edition. It also lists the Server Roles features in a fresh installation of the special-purpose Hyper-V server 2008 R2. (column 5):

red, unavailable     green, available for installation     gray, installed by default

Server Roles and Features






Active Directory Certificate Services
     Certificate Authority
Active Directory Domain Services
     Active Directory Domain Controller
Active Directory Lightweight Domain Services
DHCP Server
DNS Server
File Services
     File Server
     Distributed File System
          DFS Namespaces
          DFS Replication
     File Server Resource Manager
     Services for Network File System
     Branchcache for network files
Print and Document Services
     Print Server
     LPD Service
Remote Desktop Services
     Remote Desktop Virtualization Host
Web Server (IIS)
     Web Server
          Common HTTP features
               Static Content
               Default Document
               Directory Browsing
               HTTP Errors
               HTTP Redirection
               WebDAV Publishing
          Application Development
               .NET Extensibility
               ISAPI Extensions
               ISAPI Filters
               Server Side Includes
          Health and Diagnostics
               HTTP Logging
               Logging Tools
               Request Monitor
               Custom Logging
               ODBC Logging
               Basic Authentication
               Windows Authentication
               Digest Authentication
               Client Certificate Mapping Authenti…
               IIS Client Certificate Mapping Auth…
               URL Authorization
               Request Filtering
               IP and Domain Restrictions
               Static Content Compression
               Dynamic Content Compression
     Management Tools
          IIS Management Scripts and Tools
          Management Service
          IIS 6 Management Compatibility
               IIS 6 Metabase Compatibility
               IIS 6 WMI Compatibility
               IIS 6 Scripting Tools
     FTP Server
          FTP Service
          FTP Extensibility
     IIS Hostable Web Core
.Net Framework 2.0 Features
.Net Framework 3.5.1 Features
     .Net Framework 3.5.1
     WCF Activation
          HTTP Activation
          Non-HTTP Activation
Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS)
     Compact Server
BitLocker Drive Encryption
Failover Clustering
MultiPath I/O
Network Load Balancing
Quality Windows Audio Video Experience
SNMP Services
     SNMP Service
Subsystem for UNIX-based Application
Telnet Client
Windows Process Activation Service
     Process Model
     .NET Environment
     Configuration APIs
Windows Server Backup Features
     Windows Server Backup
     Command-line tools
Windows PowerShell
     Windows PowerShell Cmdlets
Windows Server Migration Tools
WinRM IIS Extension
WINS Server
WoW64 Support
     WoW64 for .NET Framework 2.0 and Win…
          WoW64 for .NET Framework 2.0
          WoW64 for Windows PowerShell
     WoW64 for .NET Framework 3.0 and 3.5
     WoW64 for Print Services
WoW64 for Failover Clustering
     WoW64 for Input Method Editor
     WoW64 for Subsystem for UNIX-based ap…

While some Server Roles and Features are available in multiple editions of Windows Server, the specific capabilities of the roles may vary between editions.

Further reading

Server Core changes in Windows Server 2008 R2 Server Core Installation Option Getting Started Guide Edition Comparison by Server Core Installation Option What are the new features in Server Core in Windows Server 2008 R2? Windows Server 2008 R2 Server Core – Sconfig and other new features

Implement Minimalist Solutions using Windows Server 2008 R2 Server Core MPIO with Windows 2008 R2 Server Core and iSCSI Windows Tips & Tricks UPDATE PDC-2008 Managed Development on Windows Server Core 2008 R2

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