Skip to main content

Compare features in Windows Server versions

View the security, infrastructure, and application workload features of Windows Server 2016 as compared to previous versions.

Performance and scalability

Performance and scalability
Feature descriptionWindows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter

Physical (host) memory support

Up to 4 TB per physical serverUp to 24 TB per physical server (6x)

Physical (host) logical processor support

Up to 320 LPsUp to 512 LPs

Virtual machine memory support

Up to 1 TB per virtual machineUp to 12 TB per virtual machine (12x)

Virtual machine virtual processor support

Up to 64 VPs per virtual machineUp to 240 VPs per virtual machine (3.75x)
Feature description

Physical (host) memory support

Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 4 TB per physical server
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 24 TB per physical server (6x)
Feature description

Physical (host) logical processor support

Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 320 LPs
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 512 LPs
Feature description

Virtual machine memory support

Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 1 TB per virtual machine
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 12 TB per virtual machine (12x)
Feature description

Virtual machine virtual processor support

Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 64 VPs per virtual machine
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Up to 240 VPs per virtual machine (3.75x)
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter
Feature description
Windows Server 2012/2012 R2 Standard and Datacenter
Windows Server 2016 Standard and Datacenter

Security

Level of support keyNot supported Not supported    Limited support Limited support    Fully supported Fully supported   
Security
Feature descriptionWindows Server 2008 R2Windows Server 2012 R2Windows Server 2016

Shielded Virtual Machines

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Just Enough Administration

Fully supportedFully supportedFully supported

Just-in-Time Administration

Limited supportFully supportedFully supported

Credential Guard

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Remote Credential Guard

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Device Guard

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

AppLocker

Limited supportFully supportedFully supported

Windows Defender

Limited supportLimited supportFully supported

Control Flow Guard

Not supportedNot supported.Fully supported

Enhanced threat detection

Not supportedLimited supportFully supported
Feature description

Shielded Virtual Machines

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Just Enough Administration

Windows Server 2008 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Just-in-Time Administration

Windows Server 2008 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2012 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Credential Guard

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Remote Credential Guard

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Device Guard

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

AppLocker

Windows Server 2008 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2012 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Windows Defender

Windows Server 2008 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Control Flow Guard

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported.
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Enhanced threat detection

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016

Software-defined datacenter: Compute

Level of support keyNot supported Not supported    Limited support Limited support    Fully supported Fully supported   
Software-defined datacenter: Compute
Feature descriptionWindows Server 2008 R2Windows Server 2012 R2Windows Server 2016

Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Linux and FreeBSD workloads

Limited supportLimited supportFully supported

Hot add and remove for disk, memory, and network

Not supportedLimited supportFully supported

RDS RemoteFX vGPU

Not supportedLimited supportFully supported

Server management tools

Limited supportLimited supportFully supported

Nano Server installation option

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

VM Load Balancing

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported
Feature description

Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Linux and FreeBSD workloads

Windows Server 2008 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Hot add and remove for disk, memory, and network

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

RDS RemoteFX vGPU

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Server management tools

Windows Server 2008 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Nano Server installation option

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

VM Load Balancing

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016

Software-defined datacenter: Networking

Level of support keyNot supported Not supported    Limited support Limited support    Fully supported Fully supported   
Software-defined datacenter: Networking
Feature descriptionWindows Server 2008 R2Windows Server 2012 R2Windows Server 2016

Network Controller

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Microsegmentation

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Software Load Balancer

Not supportedLimited supportFully supported
Feature description

Network Controller

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Microsegmentation

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Software Load Balancer

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016

Software-defined datacenter: Storage

Level of support keyNot supported Not supported    Limited support Limited support    Fully supported Fully supported   
Software-defined datacenter: Storage
Feature descriptionWindows Server 2008 R2Windows Server 2012 R2Windows Server 2016

Storage Spaces Direct

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Storage Quality of Service

Not supportedLimited supportFully supported

Data deduplication

Not supportedLimited supportFully supported

Storage Replica

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Storage health monitoring

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

High Performance NVMe device support

Not supportedFully supportedFully supported

Persistent Memory for maximum Application Performance

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Scale Out File Server

Not supportedLimited supportFully supported

VM Storage Resiliency

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported
Feature description

Storage Spaces Direct

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Storage Quality of Service

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Data deduplication

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Storage Replica

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Storage health monitoring

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

High Performance NVMe device support

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Persistent Memory for maximum Application Performance

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Scale Out File Server

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Limited support
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

VM Storage Resiliency

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016

Cloud-ready application platform

Level of support keyNot supported Not supported    Limited support Limited support    Fully supported Fully supported   
Cloud-ready application platform
Feature descriptionWindows Server 2008 R2Windows Server 2012 R2Windows Server 2016

Windows Server containers

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Hyper-V containers

Not supportedNot supportedFully supported

Windows PowerShell Desired State Configuration

Fully supportedFully supportedFully supported

Windows PowerShell 5.1

Fully supportedFully supportedFully supported
Feature description

Windows Server containers

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Hyper-V containers

Windows Server 2008 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Not supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Windows PowerShell Desired State Configuration

Windows Server 2008 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description

Windows PowerShell 5.1

Windows Server 2008 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2012 R2
Fully supported
Windows Server 2016
Fully supported
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Feature description
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2012 R2
Windows Server 2016
Back To Top