Jeff Alexander's Weblog

Technical Evangelist - Windows Infrastructure

Windows Server 2008 as a workstation..

Windows Server 2008 as a workstation..

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This topic has been floating around a few blogs for awhile now and I decided to give it a go on my Lenovo Windows Server 2008 Enterprise Button BannerThinkpad T61P.  After all it’s 64-Bit; has 4GB of RAM and supports Hyper-V.  And as I begin to prepare my sessions  for TechEd Australia it’s much easier to use a laptop enabled with Hyper-V than to do all the prep work on one of my servers.  And at TechEd this year we will be running all the demo’s for the event on big Hyper-V servers from HP anyway so it makes sense to use Windows Server 2008 as my primary OS.

I’ve also been doing quite a bit of video editing and have been running low on disk space which was another momen_7200_2_sm_106x106reason to make the move.  So I had a look around for a bigger hard drive for my laptop and found the Seagate Momentus 7200.3 320GB drive.  I was like yep need one of those!

So now that I have all the bits I need it’s time to backup all my data and get building with Windows Server 2008.  I’ll let you know how I go with applications after the install.  From the research I’ve done so far the only thing I lose over Vista is Dreamscene which I think I can live without for the time being.

So off I go for a bit of build fun…


  • I've already gone down this path and it worked great except.... when you enable hyper-v, you loose sleep/hibernate which are pretty useful features on a laptop.

  • Hi Ben,

    Yeah I was aware of that already.  I'm not going to have Hyper-V installed all the time..only when I need to..

  • Hey Jeffa

    What about WMDC? Will this install on Windows 2008?



  • Not only that but Hyper-V (at least RC1) crippled the video card for the host OS. I have a Lenovo X60 here with 64-Bit Server 2008 and Hyper-V and you can even notice it on that. Put it on a pc with a powerful video card and you'll feel like you've lost an arm. It'll be like that so long as the role is installed.

    As for day to day use? Server 2008 is fantastic. Running 32-bit on my big workstation with 8GB of ram because it's far easier to find drivers and get games running. You should have access to all the ram with PAE so long as your chipset supports it.

    I'm sure you'll be happy with Server 2008 as a workstation OS.

    Good Luck

  • I'll see how I go with the video card..Thanks for the tip..

    So far just installing applications and so far so good..and yes WMDC works fine..

  • I've been running Server 2008 on my HP 8710w for quite some time now including Hyper-V. While playing games (Team Fortress 2) on the machine I have noticed that the first few seconds after starting the game the graphics performance stutters a lot. After the initial stuttering period that lasts 5-10 seconds everything is back to normal and graphics performance is great. The stuttering symptoms appeared after I installed the Hyper-V role and has been the same since beta.

    The 8710w has a Nvidia Quadro FX 1600m that I have paired with WHQL Geforce drivers that turns it into a Nvidia Geforce 8800 GTS.

    While annoying I feel that I can live with it, I'm still able to get a good experience in the graphics department.

  • frli,

    I was trying it on Team Fortress 2 and found the game entirely unplayable once Hyper-V was added. It didn't seem to matter if I left it running for any amount of time, it never recovered. This was on a Q6600 machine, 4gb of ram and an 8800 GTS. I wonder if it's entirely driver based then? The only other thing that might make a difference was that I had the graphics almost full up and 1920x1200 res. I'd love to find out the cause of this issue so let me know if you have any ideas, (or if anyone else does).

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