Why Metro on a Server Product? (So many questions. So little time. Part 40)

Adam asked this question at a recent TechNet Event

Download the RC

Well, Adam, you’re asking me to share my opinion.  At this stage of the release cycle, I’m not sure that I’m allowed to share my own opinion.  Surprised smile  And of course I want to point you to the blogs that hold the official company stance on these kinds of topics: 

“Okay.. So what’s YOUR opinion?”

Honestly, I believe it simply has to do with sharing a common experience.  Just like an older laptop or desktop that doesn’t have a touchscreen, you’ll still find the start screen useful as if it were just a big colorful start menu.  You’ll have the same capability to run “Metro Apps” on Windows 8, Windows 8 RT / ARM-based tablets, and Windows Server 2012.  But ultimately the way you’re going to be using Windows Server 2012 is through remote management.  We’ve made it so much easier to use Server Manager to connect to many servers and fully manage them remotely, that most of your work will be done from your Windows 8 Desktop and using the RSAT tools. 

BTW – You can get the Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) for Windows 8 HERE.

Wow.. the “big four – O” in this series.  Recently I’ve had some very nice feedback from some of you – appreciating this series.  And you folks sure do ask a lot of great questions. 

“How many more of these do you have waiting for an answer, Kevin?”

I haven’t counted.. but probably enough to at least hit the “big one – O – O” eventually. 

What do you think?   Is it really that big of a deal that the Metro Start Screen is in full installations of Windows Server?  Let’s talk about it in the comments.

2 thoughts on “Why Metro on a Server Product? (So many questions. So little time. Part 40)

  1. Why don't all engine based vehicles have the SAME controls for maneuvering?  Because the same controls for one vehicle are not always IDEAL for another vehicle.  Why should Microsoft NOT use Metro on non-touch enabled devices?  Because the same controls are NOT OPTIMAL for both environments.  This applies to all Metro devices, but an interface for managing a server SHOULD be different – OPTIMIZED – for people who know what they are doing.  I understand there's an economic issue to maintaining multiple interfaces… but then plan things differently and allow for a transition.  MS generally managed to migrate people off 32 bit to 64 bit but they've done it over 2-3 versions of Windows (Vista/7/8).  You could have forced the industry (in as much as MS can force anything) to go touch by including it and making requirements that vendors support it and ship touch displays and the like.  Force industry to support it so that end-users aren't the guinea pigs and experiencing pain dealing with the transition.  


  2. Excellent comment, Lee.  Thanks.
    I think when people see that, when one is using desktop apps, they will really just treat the Start screen as a big, colorful start menu, it will be an easier transition than all of the initial shock people are having now.  
    And why would anyone (Microsoft or otherwise) want to force users to an all-touch experience when they already have so many Windows applications and tools that they know and love?  For those applications, there are little-to-no compatibility concerns moving to Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012.  Many millions of people PREFER to do the bulk of their work with a keyboard and mouse.  
    Back to the topic at hand, and as I said in the post – For the most part, servers aren't meant to be worked on directly.  You configure them and then let them run; and monitor them from your Windows 8 based machine using remote server administration tools and using consoles for your other management tools (System Center, etc.).  
    OH.. and another important reason why Metro is on Server: Remote Desktop sessions (what was once known as Terminal Server sessions).  The Remote Desktop Session Host is running Windows Server 2012 – but the sessions need to act behave just like Windows 8; with all the same clean/quick graphics and multi-touch capabilities.
    Does that help?


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