Server 2008 as a Workstation: Viability as a Workstation

In the previous posting, I hinted at a few additional topics that would be relevant to a discussion of Server 2008 as a workstation operating system. One of those was the issue of power options. Here, the news is not good for Hyper-V users: as soon as you install the Hyper-V role, you lose the ability to make your computer sleep or hibernate (those two options are present in Windows Vista, although the sleep function is famous for having problems). That may not a big issue for everyone, I suppose, but for laptops it's a definite drawback - and even for towers or rack systems, not all servers are necessarily required to be awake 24/7.

Surely Microsoft could have figured out a way to address this issue, such as simply warning the user if he or she tries to put the host to sleep when there are VMs running. Would that have been so hard? We're all supposed to be trying to use less energy, right? One demerit for Server 2008 and Hyper-V.

Another workstation-viability point to address is that of Offline Files (the new name of "Offline Files and Folders"). On my previous Vista laptop, I made a few folders on my office network "available offline" so that they'd be cached on the laptop and I could synchronize folders before and after a trip. Server 2008 didn't show me the usual "Always Available Offline" context menu option for a network share, so I found it in the Services console and activated it, prompting an error that "The system could not find the file specified." I enabled Offline Files in the Offline Files control panel, which is probably what I should have done in the first place. After a restart, Offline Files seemed to work just as it does in Vista - I did some synchronizing just to be sure (yep the Synch Center is present in the GUI), and didn't notice any problems.

Previous Posts...

Server 2008 as a Workstation, Chapter 1: Drivers

Server 2008 as a Workstation: Preface

Does your hardware support Hyper-V?

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