Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista are introducing some of the biggest changes to our networking stack in recent memory. From the server side, I think this is one of the biggest overlooked features of Windows Server 2008.
To that point, earlier this year we released the Tolly Group Whitepaper that showed the how the improvements to our TCP/IP stack and SMB 2.0 Protocol gave us a 3.5x time-to-completion improvement over Windows Server 2003. The paper really is a good read and it has some good technical details of what the exact improvements are that allow this to happen. (receive window auto-tuning, SMB File handles and buffer sizes, etc)
One of the better reports that I have seen on the networking improvements came across my inbox this morning, and it came from our MSN group who is dogfooding Windows Server 200 RC0.
Here is what they are seeing:
<paste from email>
First set of tests is to transfer 10.793 GB ( a collection of 10 VirtualEarth Stitch files) from TK2 Datacenter to BLU Datacenter and from BLU Dataceneter to TK2 Datacenter.
a. In windows 2003, from TK2 to BLU, it took 5 hours, 40 minutes and 13 seconds. Transfer rate observed was 567813 Bytes/sec. From BLU to TK2, it took 6 hours, 6 minutes and 26 seconds. Transfer rate observed was 527182 Bytes/sec.
b. In LH RC0 build, from TK2 to BLU, it took 7 minutes and 45 seconds, Transfer rate observed was 25062249 Bytes/sec. From BLU to TK2, it was 8 minutes and 10 seconds, Transfer rate observed was 23712912 Bytes/sec
The improvement observed was ~45 times faster over windows 2003
</paste from email>