Overview of SMB 3.0 in Windows Server 2012

History of the SMB Protocol

SMB (Server Message Block) also known as CIFS (Common Internet File System) is  network protocol (the ports used are 445 or over NetBIOS 137 & 138 on UDP or 137 7 139 on TCP). The SMB protocol uses a client-server based approach – a client makes a request and the server responds.

SMB 1.0 was first introduced into Windows to support the very early network operating systems from Microsoft. The original protocol didn’t change that much until the introduction of Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 at which point Microsoft released the SMB v2.0. Some of the new features included at the time were; larger buffer sizes and increased scalability (the number of open file handles an number of shares a server can advertise and more.)

With the release of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 so came alone version 2.1 of the protocol which included a small number of enhancements and a new feature for the opportunistic locking of files.

When Server 2012 was first starting to be talked about the SMB protocol was called version 2.2 but Microsoft have since promoted a major version to 3.0 due to the huge number of changes that have been included.

What’s new in the SMB protocol with version 3.0?

As mentioned above the list of new features for the new version of SMB is impressive, the list includes:

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Windows Server 2012 Coming September 4th!

Yesterday we found out that Windows Server 2012 has gone RTM with an official blog post from the Windows server engineering team! September the 4th (there will be a virtual launch event) is the day when it will be available for you to purchase and start upgrading your servers, volume licence customers will be able to get hold of a copy ‘in the next couple of weeks’.

Microsoft announced their pricing a few weeks ago – there will be the usual datacentre & standard editions (no enterprise edition this time) as well as two editions aimed at smaller business customers which are known as essentials and foundation.

To get hold of the client version – ‘Windows 8’ you are going to have to wait a little longer as that will be made available on October the 26th.

Which Windows Server edition is right for you?

Microsoft have recently announced their new licencing model for Windows Server 2012 with the SKUs available being changed.

As you can imagine Microsoft have a highly ‘cloud optimized’ version of Server 2012 coming in the form of the data centre edition which as with the 2008 versions is licenced per processor (around $4809 Open NL pricing) and again as with 2008 you can run unlimited virtual instances.

Then comes a change as there is no longer the ‘Enterprise’ version instead you jump straight down to the standard edition (open NL price over $882) which Microsoft are aiming at ‘Low density or non- Virtualized environments’ this allows for a full a Windows server and two virtual instances.

You then have two further editions aimed at the smaller business ‘Essentials’ and ‘Foundation’  other versions have no virtual instance rights and both have a limited user account limit 25 users for the Essentials (with an Open NL price of $425) and 15 for the Foundation (foundation has no known pricing as its only available to OEM)

It is no great surprise to see the licensing model heavily geared around Hyper-V and both public and private cloud. More information can be found on the Microsoft licence website for Server 2012 >>http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/server-cloud/windows-server/2012-editions.aspx

Server 2012 License overview

Server 2012 License Overview