New white paper on the advantages of a Core Install of Windows Server 2008

Microsoft IT just published a new technical case study called “Enhancing Availability with a Server Core Installation of Windows Server 2008”. It talks about how they deployed this new install option, which removes applications and components typically associated with client installs, like Internet Explorer, Windows Explorer, Media Player and Windows Mail.

They listed several benefits of the new Core install option, including:

  • Reduced management and maintenance 
  • Reduced attack surface 
  • Streamlined installation 
  • Maximized hardware utilization

Server Core does not apply to every Windows Server role, but they mention deploying the following scenarios:

  • Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) 
  • Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services (AD LDS) 
  • Domain Name System (DNS) Server service 
  • Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) Server service 
  • File services 
  • Hyper-V
  • Internet Information Services (IIS) 
  • Print services 
  • Windows Media Services

Here’s a quote from that paper: “The Server Core installation option of Windows Server 2008 enables Microsoft IT to have more control over its server and network infrastructure. A Server Core installation also helps increase security by providing a reduced attack surface and helps reduce overall costs because of reduced deployment and maintenance requirements.”

Read the full white paper at

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