Talk:Windows Server 2003

Active discussions

Storage Server EditionsEdit

Sorry I was the first one to put up the table, now I see it's been removed and placed back again (with some more info). Where did I get this information? Well since Storage Server is an OEM only OS, it was from the tech at Dell. Because I searched the net for the info but I never found it. I have his email I guess I could give it to some one so you can directly ask?

I have also been searching around a little bit and the only place I have found is this one: Don't know if this could be used?

The info states the Express Edition supports up to two disk drives. Some vendors are selling 1U rack-mount NAS devices with four drives and claim the supplied OS is the Express Edition. Perhaps the 'two disk drive' limit refers to the number of logical disks, not physical ?
This ambiguity could do with clearing up. I've emailed Microsoft for more info, I'll update if they respond.
Sircompo (talk) 17:11, 8 January 2008 (UTC)


The kernel and any differences from Windows 2000 aren't mentioned - I guess 2003 has GDI+ like XP, unlike GDI in 2000?. I encourage someone to add some info. --Widefox 00:38, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

Comments on WS2K3 web editionEdit

The following was commented out from the article by an anonymous editor, and perhaps should simply be removed, since Web Edition is mentioned further down, but in case anyone disagrees, I will preserve it here:

A workstation version of Windows Server 2003 was released called 'Windows Server 2003: Web Edition". This version is akin to Windows 2000 without XP's bulk. It is arguably better than Windows XP for the Internet, as it includes IIS, but capable replacements such as Apache are freely available for existing Windows XP users.
Web server edition is most certainly not a workstation product. It is a low end version of WS2K3 designed to serve webpages

- IMSoP 15:12, 25 Mar 2004 (UTC) kl

Windows 2000 TCOEdit

Why is this section on the Windows Server 2003 page rather than in the Windows 2000 Server Features section of the Windows 2000 page?

Whatever it was, it was inaccurate. I've read the report, and it states that hardware and software procurement is the LEAST cost to a business. - Ta bu shi da yu 00:42, 27 May 2005 (UTC)

Variants vs FlavorsEdit

I agree with the Variants edit. Not only is it better for non-English speakers, but it's more appropriate since we are talking about a business OS, as such Microsoft, and people talking about the Operating System is more likely ti use the word variants or version versus flavors, unless he was an Apple guy. ;) PPGMD

Hmmm Apple guy, you say. Uhm... er...  :-) AlistairMcMillan 23:41, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)

No Sound and 3D in 2003Edit

Who came up with the BS that there was no sound or 3d acceleration in Windows 2003? Because not only are they available they work just fine. PPGMD

It was this edit: by User:Bsoft Mr. Jones 12:16, 16 Dec 2004 (UTC)
You have alot more time than I do, to go searching for that (then again it's been a couple of months). I was simply making my opinion of baseless edits known. PPGMD
If only that were so :-) It took me about one minute; I just used a binary chop. BTW, if you use four tildes, your comments are date stamped. Mr. Jones 20:46, 16 Dec 2004 (UTC)


The following section sounds a bit like POV:

Notable features

Most versions of Windows Server include Terminal Services support (using the Remote Desktop Protocol), enabling multiple simultaneous remote graphical logins. This enables thin client computing on the windows platform, where all applications run remotely on the server. This feature was first introduced with a special "Terminal Server Edition" of Windows NT Server 4.0, but became more important when made a standard part of Windows 2000.
Internet Information Services (IIS) v6.0 - again, versions of IIS were available on Windows 2000 and earlier, but IIS is improved significantly in Windows Server 2003.
Active Directory - like Terminal Services, significantly improved since Windows 2000
Increased default security over previous versions, due to the built-in firewall and most services being disabled by default.
Message Queuing - significantly improved since Windows 2000
Manage Your Server - a role management administrative tool that allows an administrator to choose what functionality the server should provide.

All of this sounds like POV and Microsoft evangelizing. "significantly improved since Windows 2000" doesn't sound informative at all. Of course they improved it, they had years to do it. But WHAT precisely was improved?

And increased default security means nothing. It's definitely not a notable feature. Unless Microsoft admits that their 2003 is to be used by complete newbies, default security settings are meaningless as they are always overridden by more advanced users. And disabling services doesn't count as a security setting. If the services themselves have security holes, they should be patched, not turned off (with a notice: turn them on at your own risk).

Again: this seems like POV.

The above comment seems POV too. But yes, I agree needs criticisms otherwise we'll all feel like buying it! 23:08, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

New features List - Windows Server 2003 R2Edit

States "Server Virtualization A new licensing policy allows up to 4 virtual instances "

This is only the case in Microsoft ® Windows Server™ 2003 R2, Enterprise Edition not Microsoft ® Windows Server™ 2003 R2, Standard Edition.

Does Windows Server 2003 with SP2 provide the same functionality as Windows Server 2003 R2 (maybe also with SP2)? I haven't found a clear explanation of this in the article.QuestPC 15:44, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
SP2 includes updates to R2 programs, but if an installation does not have R2, SP2 will not upgrade it to R2. --soum (0_o) 17:10, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

No. because they are "out of band" updates. Supplements, not fixes. So they are not installed automatically due to MS support policy, thats why R2 is an optional pack.


Someone should add a section about criticism, like in many other articles in Wikipedia. It is not only important to know how it works, but also what problems and flaws it has. For example, what about the complexity problem: Making it avaliable with an integrated GUI will probably make it lose performance. What about the language it is written in? It will be much faster than Linux and other operating systems if written in assembler. What about the market impact of this operating system (and the reactions in the press and the GNU Community). If it is not fixed soon, i'll try to do it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Sure, we would really appreciate that. But things like "Making it avaliable with an integrated GUI will probably make it lose performance" and "It will be much faster than Linux and other operating systems if written in assembler" cannot be written until you can attribute it to some reputed source to back yourself up. You cannot claim anything by yourself in Wikipedia. --soumসৌমোyasch 15:00, 28 October 2006 (UTC)
I doubt it's written in assembly because it's available on more than one architecture.-- 21:19, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Oops, forgot to log in.--CCFreak2K 21:25, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Parts of kernel, especially the lowest level parts that interact with the processor, schedulers in which performance is of greatest concern and bootstrapping code are generally written in assembly. For any OS, in general. At least, inline assembly is used extravagantly. However, that doesn't mean we can add it for Windows, since no verifiable source is saying this.--soumসৌমোyasch 09:51, 7 November 2006 (UTC)

"Sure, we would really appreciate that. But things like "Making it avaliable with an integrated GUI will probably make it lose performance" ... cannot be written until you can attribute it to some reputed source to back yourself up"

An MS Developer said on MSDN that the reason Windows Server 2008 has a Server Core Install option is to reduce attack surface which he says would have stopped 70% of recent windows exploits. He says it was not intended to increase performance. So the comment has merit, perhaps stick it in and use the ref? Its on the server 2008 page... (talk) 00:19, 26 April 2009 (UTC)


Web Edition Error?Edit

Quote: "In general, all variants of Windows Server 2003 have the ability to share files and printers, act as an application server, and host message queues, provide email services, authenticate users, act as an X.509 certificate server, provide LDAP directory services, serve streaming media, and to perform other server-oriented functions." I might be wrong here, so feel free to correct me, but without Terminal Services, Web Edition can't act as an application server.

You are wrong. Confusingly, in the industry, application server does not mean a server for applications. IIS is an application server because it is an integrated suite for running Dynamic Web Applications and services. So is something like Sun GlassFish.

If you actually go into Manage Your Server on server 2003, and install the Application Server role, it will install IIS and ASP support.

Windows Web Server Edition is principally an application server platform. (talk) 00:21, 26 April 2009 (UTC)

Service Pack 2Edit

Why was the service pack 2 released edit removed? Its not in beta/RC anymore, its released.

Supported HardwareEdit

Just noticed that it was said that the 64-bit Datacentre Edition of Server 2003 supports up to 512GB of RAM, however this MS link suggests that it supports 2TB of RAM. Scroll right down to the bottom.

I haven't checked the other figures yet - but I'll let someone else double-check this and make the edit.

Ryan R (M_3628905) 20:11, 19 September 2007 (UTC)

That reference is outdated. Be careful too that R2 of Windows Server 2003 is different and CAN support more RAM than the initial release.Jasper Deng (talk) 22:51, 10 July 2010 (UTC)

infobox screenshotEdit

the screenshot of Windows Server 2003 in the infobox doesn't really illustrate Windows Server 2003. It could be Windows XP with themes turned off for all we know. If someone with Windows Server 2003 can take a new screenshot with some more illustrative windows open like Active Directory or even the about box, I think it will be better. Da rulz07 08:21, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Screenshots with windows open clutter the screenshot, and are not preferred as such. Btw, the screenshot iluustrates Vista. The first item in Start menu is "Manage your server". That is a Server 2003-specific feature. --soum talk 08:26, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Windows Server 2003 as WorkstationEdit

I've undone the changes by Josh the Nerd since modifying Windows Server 2003 is common enough to warrant a notice. If anybody disagrees please let me know. Perhaps common modifications of Windows Server 2003 should be put in an independent section? Dylansmrjones 01:22, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

Features are not up to dateEdit

Page shall be updated according to updated max RAM, max # processor, etc. cf. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:13, 31 October 2007 (UTC)

Important clarification to add: Processor vs Core Microsoft definitionsEdit

Page shall contain the exact definition of what a processor is, microsoftly speaking. Indeed, this concept is quite blur if we refer to the numerous pages from different Microsoft web sites.

For instance, at, we can find: Windows 2003 Server Standard x64 R2 (64 bits): - 4-way symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) support

Other example for the same Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard x64 Edition at - memory-bound applications that do not require more than four processors. - supports up to 32 GB of RAM on 1- to 4-way servers. - Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard x64 Edition supports up to four CPUs on one server)

If we refer to Wikipedia,, multiprocessor architecture or multicore processor are both SMP architecture. Thus, by speaking sometimes about 4 processors support, sometimes about 4-way SMP support, Microsoft confuses us all. Coming to a Quadri 4-cores based server (16 SMP), this leads to go from a Standard edition (4 processors support) to a DataCenter edition (4x4=16 SMP support), thus raising the license price as for no less than +700%. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:15, 31 October 2007 (UTC)

String Bean SoftwareEdit

I removed the line about Microsoft's acquisition of String Bean Software in the opening section as I'm not sure this is specifically relevant to the Server 2003 article, and almost positive that even if it is, the initial few paragraphs are not the place for this little nugget.

Perhaps someone more knowledgeable on the relevance of SBS's SAN technology to 2K3 can re-edit appropriately?

Juux (talk) 20:55, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

I agree that it is not particularly relevant, especially in the first paragraph. It can possibly go in one of the sections. [1] — Wenli (reply here) 02:24, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

10 Versions or 4?Edit

According to, there are 10 different versions of Windows Server 2003, each with a different maximum RAM and CPUs that it can use. Shouldn't this page be updated to reflect those versions? (talk) 17:23, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

The technet page actually only lists five versions, all of which are discussed on this page. For instance, the "Enterprise Edition" is repeated twice as "x64" and "Itanium" versions. — Wenli (reply here) 23:44, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
No, you're confusing R2 with the initial release.Jasper Deng (talk) 22:51, 10 July 2010 (UTC)


"(also referred to as Win2K3 or XP Server[citation needed]"

Never heard of XP server but .NET server I have... .NET Server was the codename during the beta (much like how vista is synonomous with longhorn) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:44, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

Clueless Newbie question about sourcesEdit

Clueless Newbie question about sources... The Wikipedia docs about using primary, secondary and tertiary sources say that "Any material that is challenged or likely to be challenged" should rely on material from secondary sources. May I assume that statements like "A significantly improved version of..." need someone outside of Microsoft saying that the alleged improvement exists but that statements like "was released to manufacturing on 6 December 2005" or "...licensing policy allows up to 4 virtual instances.." or "Number of physical CPUs = 4" are things that are not likely to be challenged (and not likely to be lies / exaggerated marketing claims) and thus appropriate for a reference to a Microsoft document? (talk) 19:26, 21 June 2009 (UTC)

Need confirmation that DreamSpark gives R2 not the initial releaseEdit

DreamSpark lists Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard 32-bit in the products list, but there's no source confirming it's R2 not the initial release, and also there's no R2 symbol in the product logo on the Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition page at DreamSpark.Jasper Deng (talk) 22:51, 10 July 2010 (UTC)

RAM limitationsEdit

I am surprised there's no indication of RAM limitation for the different version in the "Editions" section. Please include it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:55, 29 August 2011 (UTC)


'Support for iSCSI' is not limited to the storage server editions. Presumably, the storage server editions add support for creating iSCSI LUN's, the other editions only include the iSCSI initiator. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:16, 10 September 2011 (UTC)

Windows 2003 appliance editionEdit

This is another edition of win svr 2003 though one must install server appliance kit 3.0/3.1 and run sysprep where to put this? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:13, 8 October 2012 (UTC)

The appliance kit ( ) is used with Windows Embedded Server / Windows Server for Embedded Systems ( ). A little known edition that has not yet gone out of support -- embedded versions have longer support cycles. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:18, 6 March 2013 (UTC)


I am disapointed to see the erroneous claim that "Utilities and SDK for UNIX-Based Applications" was a new feature of R2.

It was included on the disk set with R2. It was not part of the default install. It was a downloadable component before R2. It was not part of the default install. It had a name change around the time of R2. It was the same binary files under both names. Service packs applied the same files.

You need to be very careful when making this kind of (false) statement about Microsoft Products. MS sales & marketing always lists features of new products AS IF they are new features (without making the specific claim that the feature is new).

To be clear: features of new versions are not new features. For example, if MS releases a new version of Word, and "Spell Check" is listed as feature of the new version, that does not mean that "Spell Check" is a new feature of Word.

Part of the reason for the confusion of course, is that MS makes this kind of claim to draw attention to features that people are not aware of. And, if you were not aware that SFU was a feature of Server 2003, you might think that SUA was a new feature of 2003 R2. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:04, 25 April 2013 (UTC)

Hi. Please allow me to give you a piece of advice, which saved me once or twice: In Wikipedia, starting by talking about a person (especially his feelings) instead of the subject of topic causes others to automatically disagree with you, so please don't do it. Instead of "I am disappointed to see [...]", please consider "Hello, guys. There seems to be a problem with [...]". Also "You need to be [...]" is comment on one or more person(s). Remember people like you have written this article one piece at a time.
Now, to main topic: Do you have a source that proves this component was present in a previous version of Windows Server, prior to R2?
Best regards,
Codename Lisa (talk) 06:53, 25 April 2013 (UTC)

"human computer programmers"Edit

Human seems a little redundant with "computer programmer". Is there another kind? Animal? AI (yet)? Should we say just humans? Or testers? Or computer programmers?

The article says on "human" on the page referenced, but also on page one:

"Microsoft has testers and debuggers, too--they make up 60% of the 4,700 Windows programmers". That is an interesting factoid to me in itself. So 40% are "programmers". I wouldn't consider testers in general "programmers" (but it is what the (unreliable?) source says. Unit testing (and code debugging) is usually done by the programmers themselves. UI testing (eg.) might be done non-programmers. comp.arch (talk) 13:47, 9 April 2014 (UTC)

The "Department of Homeland Security" hooplaEdit

This edit, made by an IP user from the range of 80.103.*.* was reverted by Codename Lisa because she felt that:

The point of view of a purely political organization in a technical and scientific matter such as this lacks due weight.

I myself don't agree with CL about DoHS being a purely political organization; mainly, this concern can be fixed by changing DoHS to US-CERT. But I am concerned about its due weight. Mainly the statement is very generic:

Computer systems running unsupported software are exposed to an elevated risk to cybersecurity dangers, such as malicious attacks or electronic data loss.

Yes, but the use of weasel word here is obvious: This statement is correct about every computer program. But, in this case, how elevated the risk is? A little more elevated? Or a lot more elevated? (How much?)

Also, the sentence is misplaced per WP:LEAD and the source itself is questionable. (WP:RS) Paul Thurrott the author of Supersite for Windows has been called "the Microsoft fan" by Computerworld – and rightly so – and the new staff haven't established a reputation of neutrality. This post is categorically pro-Microsoft and has not elaborated on the danger itself, blindly mimicking Microsoft's "upgrade now" mantra.

I am starting this discussion to give the IP user a chance to discuss the issue, because he or she is now engaged in edit warring and has exhibited refusal to get the point and unfriendly editing. (There are two IPs but they behave exactly the same, suggesting one person behind both.) But if there are new sources, new angles to explore and compromises to be made, I am ready to negotiate. Fleet Command (talk) 06:02, 20 March 2015 (UTC)

When you said new angle, I think I remembered something. Looks like Windows Server 2003 did not get a very important update even thought other OS did. Microsoft said implementing the update is literally unfeasible. I am trying to guess what it was: FREAK. We need a whole new source for it though.
By the way, wasn't it InfoWorld instead of Computerworld? Not it that it matters a lot; both are IDG publications.
Best regards,
Codename Lisa (talk) 03:37, 21 March 2015 (UTC)
@Jeh: Hi. Do you remember anything of what I said above? Best regards, Codename Lisa (talk) 03:45, 21 March 2015 (UTC)
No, I don't remember. US-CERT's warning about "ending support" is not specific as to any particular vulnerabilities or to Windows at all; they issued the exact same warning about EOS for XP and for Office 2003 (not: note an OS), and there is really nothing there that can't be said of every other no-longer-supported software. As such, absolutely that sentence should not be in the lede; it belongs in the support lifecycle section, if at all. Since the announcement is not specific to 2K3 I'd argue for exclusion. If we must have it, then we should note that it does not refer to any specific vulnerability in 2K3, and that US-CERT has issued similar announcements for other software. i.e. do not give it WP:UNDUE weight or assume any unsupportable degree of relevance to 2K3.
Re FREAK, it was fixed for Server 2003 SP2 (but not XP as support has ended).
The vuln that was "unfeasible to fix for Server 2003" is this one (see especially the "Update FAQ" on that page). Jeh (talk) 06:46, 21 March 2015 (UTC)
To User:Jeh: MS15-011] too. (talk) 11:56, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
@ Where does it say that Server 2003 wasn't updated for that? It says "This security update is rated Critical for all supported editions of Windows Server 2003, ... " Jeh (talk) 14:45, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Hi, Jeh. I checked both MS15-011 and MS15-005. Both have an "Update FAQ" section with pretty much the same answer to why Microsoft haven't released these updates for Windows Server 2003. Also, searching "[1]" in both leads to the another warning.
Best regards,
Codename Lisa (talk) 07:34, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

The timeline information is incorrect!Edit

Microsoft released Windows Server 2003 R2 in late 2005, about November or December, this same year! The Service Pack 1b fixes were released in the next year with minor bug fixed. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:15, 25 November 2015 (UTC)

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Hi. I checked the link. It is good. Best regards, Codename Lisa (talk) 11:51, 28 February 2016 (UTC)

R2 has no [extended] support anymore(?)Edit

Infobox isn't specific about R2; I think R2 should be mentioned somewhere. At first I included "extended" and got reverted, then as a compromise I dropped that word to make shorter (imply all support dropped). comp.arch (talk) 11:10, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

Hi, pal. You know, it would be a good idea if you looked at the infobox before complaining?   As the infobox says, Windows Server 2003 R2's support ends on 14 July 2015 and that's exactly the date you tried to add. And the infobox isn't wrong either: [2]
Best regards,
Codename Lisa (talk) 04:43, 22 April 2017 (UTC)

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