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One of the things that I’ve been waiting awhile for, was a Windows operating system that is smart enough to not have to reboot as much as previous versions. I thought that wait would end with Windows Server 2008 but unless someone can prove me wrong I think there is actually potential for more reboots.
The first and obvious one that we still have to deal with is patching. Didn’t Microsoft mention that reboots after patching would be much fewer? I can’t seem to find anything from the early hype days but, the excellent ASKPERF blog does go into some detail as why there should be fewer reboots. The problem is system DLL”s such as NTDLL.DLL and Kernel32.DLL still require a reboot when they are updated. Have you seen fewer reboots because of patching?
My next big complaint about Server 2008 reboots has to do with Features and Roles. I first experienced this after installing the limp Windows Server Backup. I know many people don’t like the old built in tool but if you manage an AD environment it was perfect for doing AD backups while not allowing domain Backup Operators the ability to restore your AD to their desktop. I know other ways to do this in Server 2008 but that is not my point of this post.
I installed the Windows Server Backup and quickly decided to uninstall it. What do you know…I have to reboot my server to uninstall backup software. I couldn’t believe that. During some testing I had to uninstall AD and DNS on a DC. I go and run DCPROMO on the DC and of course afterwards I have to reboot. So I do. Next I go to uninstall DNS from Server Manager (also removed the AD Binaries) and sure enough not 5 mins after rebooting for DCPROMO I had to reboot again. This was not an issue with Server 2003.
COME ON MICROSOFT!!! The last time I had to reboot this frequently was with Windows NT. Heck I was surprised after a right-click it didn’t ask me to reboot…Okay, so maybe it isn’t that bad but it definitely seems to be more now than it was in Server 2003, especially with Services. Have you experienced reboots doing tasks that didn’t require them in Server 2003? Are you happy with that?
The problem with this is when I want to install an additional Feature or Role it won’t let me because it is pending an uninstall. I’d love to hear what others think of this.