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Windows Server 2008 R2 as a desktop OS?

I'm wondering if there are problems when related to software compatibility between Windows 2008 and Windows 7. Can Windows 2008 successfully replace Windows 7 for an everyday use workstation?

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migrated from serverfault.com Dec 1 '11 at 11:25

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marked as duplicate by Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007, soandos, Nifle, Sathya Dec 6 '11 at 13:08

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Not quite. While you may be able to activate certain features such as themes some programs will refuse to work on a Server 2008 OS platform, including antivirus/firewall software. Some are not allowed to be installed on a server machine.

Things like Office and games may well work, although it's probably best to use Windows 7 because, after all, that's what it is meant for.

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For a start, Server 2008 = Vista, and Server 2008 R2 = Windows 7.

But yes, while in theory it's very possible (And you've even got things like the Desktop Experience feature) and many applications will work great many will also not. Some applications just don't like Server Operating Systems - whether through a deliberate attempt to distinguish between home and corporate users, or just through incompatibility or security issues.

The problem is, by the time you've server you're 2008 box into a workstation, you may aswell be....using a workstation.

So, I think the bigger question is - what do you think you're going to get better from Server 2008 (or R2) over Windows 7?

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The PC is going to be used more like an workstation, almost 24/7 on, 16GB of RAM, some VMs, programming, audio/video entertaining, P2P apps, etc. No gaming. –  Nick Dec 1 '11 at 11:38
    
If you're intending to run Hyper V VMs then you will need the server OS. There is no way to run Hyper V VMs in windows 7, unless you choose a VHD as your boot drive (which is not ideal) –  Mark Lawrence Dec 1 '11 at 12:54

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