Windows Server gets a new Insider Preview build, updates to 17074

Michael Cottuli

Looking for some changes in Windows Server? Earlier today, Microsoft launched a new update – the first one since early December. This latest release brings Windows Server up to version number 17074, a number that, coincidentally, matches up to the most recent Windows Insider build.

Here’s a look at what’s changed in the new build.

What’s New in Build 17074 for Windows Server

  • Storage Spaces Direct (S2D:) In this preview build we continue to expand and simplify the hardware for Storage Spaces Direct.  SCSI Enclosure Services (SES) is no longer required for Storage Spaces Direct to be compatible, this unlocks a breath of new hardware which was not capable of running S2D.  Storage Spaces Direct now also supports Persistent Memory (aka. Storage Class Memory), this unlocks a new class of extremely low latency storage which is incredibly interesting in particular as a caching device.  Storage Spaces Direct now also supports Direct-connect SATA devices to AHCI controller, again this will expand the hardware ecosystem compatible with S2D as well as unlock a new class of low cost hardware.  In this preview we have also enabled the Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV) Cache is enabled by default, which delivers an in-memory write-through cache that can dramatically boost VM performance.
  • Failover Clustering: In this preview we have introduced enhancements to Azure enlightened Failover Clusters, with enhanced eventing on host maintenance events and nodes about to be in host maintenance are excluded from placement.  By making high availability software running inside of an Azure IaaS VM be aware of maintenance events of the host, it can help deliver the highest levels of availability for your applications.
  • Dedup support for ReFS and Storage Spaces Direct.

Unlike previous Windows Server builds, you won’t need to input a key number anywhere – these images should come pre-keyed, saving you some of the hassles that come with activating these.