The New features in Microsoft’s Windows Server 2025 Preview

The New features in Microsoft’s Windows Server 2025 Preview

Microsoft has rolled out the initial preview build, version 26040, for Windows Server 2025, marking the start of the Windows Server Insider program after a winter break. Admins enrolled in the Windows Insider program can now access the first Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) Preview for Windows Server 2025.

This release is available in both Desktop Experience and Server Core installation options for Data Centre and Standard editions, as well as Annual Channel for Container Host and Azure Edition (for VM evaluation only).

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Key Features

1. SMB Over QUIC Alternative Ports

The new build introduces SMB over QUIC alternative ports, offering Windows admins the flexibility to choose ports other than the default UDP/443 for SMB over QUIC connections.

2. Flighting for Windows Server Insiders

Microsoft announced the introduction of flighting for Windows Server insiders. Admins can now automatically install new Insider builds through Windows Update, streamlining the update process.

3. Windows Server Flighting and Desktop Experience Changes

Flighting for Windows Server will now align with Windows Update, providing a seamless experience for admins. Windows Server with Desktop Experience receives enhancements such as the ‘Email & Accounts’ experience from Windows 11, expanded Bluetooth device coverage, and default Wi-Fi Wireless LAN service for Edge scenarios.

4. Expanded Insider Channels

Similar to Windows 11, Microsoft will expand Windows Server Insider flighting with additional Insider channels, providing users with more options for testing and feedback.

5. ISO and VHDX Image Availability

Registered Insiders can access the Windows Server Insider Preview download page to obtain ISO and VHDX images for the Windows Server 2025 preview build. For those not yet registered, details are available on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.

6. Build Expiry

This Windows Server Preview build is set to expire on September 15, 2024.

Microsoft Principal Program Manager Ned Pyle expressed excitement about the new features and official branding for Windows Server 2025. With support for alternative ports, flighting improvements, and enhanced Desktop Experience, Microsoft continues to empower IT professionals with cutting-edge tools for server management. Insiders are encouraged to explore the new build and provide valuable feedback as part of the collaborative development process.

For more details and access to Windows Server 2025 Insider builds, including Server Standard and Data center keys, visit the [Windows Insiders for Business portal].

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