Is Windows Server 2019 Essentials the last one?

[German]Microsoft is currently preparing to release the final version of Windows Server 2019. Windows Server 2019 Essentials will also be included. But this will probably be the last of its kind, as the company writes.


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Windows Server 2016 Essentials is the current version of Windows Server, designed for small businesses and available to businesses with up to 25 users. In the coming months, this version is expected to be replaced by Windows Server 2019 Essentials. But Microsoft has plans, to end further Windows Server Essentials editions.

Even small businesses want Cloud computing?

Microsoft just has published the article Windows Server 2019 Essentials update, dealing with Windows Server 2019 Essentials and future plans. Microsoft says, they observed that cloud computing is also impacting how small companies are planning their IT services. Redmond offers Microsoft 365 Business, and says it’s easier to buy, easier to integrate with other cloud services, and more effective in environments without full-time IT staff. In particular, the features small businesses need, such as file sharing and collaboration, are best realized with a cloud service like Microsoft 365.

But there is still Windows Server 2019 Essentials

The MVP community was also asked about their assessments, before MS started developing Windows Server 2019 Essentials. At the end of the day, this led to the decision to offer another version of the local server for small businesses – Windows Server 2019 Essentials. This edition will be released this year together with the other editions of Windows Server 2019. Windows Server 2019 Essentials will have the same features as version 2016:

  • ingle license that includes Client Access Licenses (CAL) for up to 25 users/50 devices
  • Lower price point
  • Ability to run traditional applications and other features, such as file and print sharing

Windows Server 2019 Essentials has the same licensing and technical characteristics as its predecessor, Windows Server 2016 Essentials. But Microsoft writes:

If configured as a Domain Controller, Windows Server 2019 Essentials must be the only Domain Controller, must run all Flexible Single Master Operations (FSMO) roles, and cannot have two-way trusts with other Active Directory domains.

Windows Server 2019 Essentials includes the new hardware support and features and improvements like Windows Server 2019 Standard, including Storage Migration Services, System Insights, and many more.

Windows Server 2019 Essentials will not include the Essentials Experience role. The Essentials Experience primarily simplified file sharing and device management. For a better management experience, we now have Windows Admin Center.

Recommending the Cloud

Microsoft recommends that small business customers consider Microsoft 365 as an option for their file sharing and collaboration needs. According to the article, Microsoft 365 provides a complete, intelligent solution that includes Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility + Security. Microsoft 365 Business includes a richer feature set, including Office, email and calendar, cloud file storage, data protection, and more, so our small customers can grow their businesses and reach new levels of productivity.


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And then Microsoft writes: There is a strong possibility that this could be the last edition of Windows Server Essentials. Therefore my question to IT professionals engaged in small business area: Is Windows Server Essentials no longer needed and are the small companies heading for the cloud? (via)


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2 Responses to Is Windows Server 2019 Essentials the last one?

  1. Bill Dawson says:

    Just another way for MS to make more money? Server Standard requires CALS to access server. CALs are very expensive. Many of the additional features Server Std. includes aren’t necessary for small businesses, so it’s like buying a 4 wheel drive vehicle when you only drive on city streets. Server Essentials included ‘CALs’ for up to 25 users, in an environment that only requires basic ‘server’ functions, saving a small businesses lots of money. Maybe it’s time to switch to back to using Windows Pro as a ‘server’, even though it’s a real pain to manage. Or, maybe even a ‘Linux’ model.

  2. Jim says:

    Microsoft is missing the point of Server essentials – to allow very small businesses to have a simple, cost effective server controlled environment. The push to cloud computing is all well and good, but what happens if the internet is down? What happens if your management software is not approved for a cloud version? What happens if you have intensive computing requirements like X-rays? What about security – cloud services are secure, until they are not…….so to say that all small business wants cloud services is not understanding small business.

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