Today, Microsoft is releasing Windows Server 2022, making it generally available to customers around the world. Typically, Windows Server releases are somewhat aligned with consumer versions of Windows, but Windows Server 2022 is still more like Windows 10 than Windows 11. Thatís probably because the use cases for Windows Server donít really require the kind of UI refresh that Windows 11 is.

Instead, this release focuses on enhancing core features that are more important for servers. First, there are security improvements with what Microsoft calls ďadvanced multi-layered securityĒ. There are two parts to this; first, thereís Secured-core Server, a type of device where Microsoft works with hardware partners to enable new hardware, firmware, and driver features to provide enhanced security. Microsoft did something similar for business PCs, which it called Secured-core PCs, and this is taking that to servers.

Additionally, Windows Server 2022 improves the speed and security of network connections with HTTPS and TLS 1.3 enabled by default, and support for DNS-over-HTTPS is also available now. AES-256 encryption support is now available for the SMB protocol, too.

Windows Server 2022 also comes with some new Azure features, like Azure Arc, which enables cloud services for on-premises configurations. Plus, thereís support for SMB Compression and an updated Windows Admin Center with an improved server management experience. Microsoft also highlighted some Azure features released over the past year, such as Azure Automanage to automate best practices for the cloud, Azure Kubernetes Service with .NET support, and more.

This release of Windows Server adds support for 48TB of RAM as well as 2,048 logical cores across 64 CPU sockets, which should enable support for even more applications. Additionally, it includes improved application support for Windows containers, adds support for IPv6 and dual-stack networking, and more.

If youíre interested in Windows Server 2022, you can head here to try it out, and find the full list of new features here. To buy it, there are three pricing options available; Essentials is designed for specialty servers and is licensed per server, while Standard and Datacenter are licensed per core and meant for large-scale applications.