|Feature/functionality||Windows Server 2008 R2||Windows Server 2012|
|Maximum cluster size|
|Management of large-scale clusters by using Server Manager and Failover Cluster Manager||X|
|Management and mobility of clustered virtual machines and other clustered roles||X|
|Cluster Shared Volumes||X||X|
|Support for Scale-Out File Servers||X|
|Virtual machine application monitoring and management||X|
|Cluster validation tests||X||X|
|Active Directory Domain Services integration||X||X|
|Cluster upgrade and migration||X||X|
|iSCSI Software Target integration||X|
|Task Scheduler integration||X|
|Windows PowerShell support||X||X|
- Search, filtering, and custom views. Administrators can more easily manage and navigate large numbers of clustered virtual machines or other clustered roles.
- Multiselect. Administrators can easily select a specific collection of virtual machines and then perform any needed operation on them (such as live migration, save, shutdown, or start).
- Simplified live migration and quick migration of virtual machines and virtual machine storage. Live migration and quick migration are easier to perform.
- Simpler configuration of Cluster Shared Volumes (CSVs). Configuration is a simple right-click in the Storage pane. CSVs have additional enhancements, described in Cluster Shared Volumes, later in this topic.
- Support for Hyper-V Replica. Hyper-V Replica provides point-in-time replication of virtual machines between storage systems, clusters, and data centers for disaster recovery.
|Priority settings: High, Medium (the default), Low, or No Auto Start||All clustered roles, including clustered virtual machines|
|Preemption of virtual machines based on priority||Clustered virtual machines|
|Memory-aware virtual machine placement||Clustered virtual machines|
|Virtual machine mobility features||Clustered virtual machines|
|Automated node draining||All clustered roles, including clustered virtual machines|
- Storage capabilities for a wider range of clustered roles. These include Scale-Out File Servers for application data, which can provide continuously available and scalable file-based (SMB) server application storage. For more information, seeSupport for Scale-Out File Servers later in this topic.
- CSV proxy file system (CSVFS). This file system provides cluster shared storage with a single, consistent file name space while still using the underlying NTFS file system.
- Support for BitLocker Drive Encryption. CSVs can be decrypted by using the common identity of the computer account for the cluster (also called the Cluster Name Object, or CNO). This enables physical security for deployments outside secure data centers and meets compliance requirements for volume-level encryption.
- Ease of file backup. CSVs support backup requestors that are running the Windows Server 2008 R2 operating system as well as Windows Server 2012 Backup. Backups can use application-consistent and crash-consistent Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) snapshots.
- Direct I/O for file data access, including sparse files. This enhances virtual machine creation and copy performance.
- Removal of external authentication dependencies. This improves the performance and resiliency of CSVs.
- Server Message Block (SMB) 3.0 integration. CSVs can provide storage for Hyper-V and applications such as Microsoft SQL Server. For more information, see Server Message Block overview.
- Integration with SMB Multichannel and SMB Direct. These new SMB features allow CSV traffic to stream across multiple networks in the cluster and to leverage network adapters that support Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA).
- Storage can be made visible to only a subset of nodes. This feature enables cluster deployments that contain both application and data nodes.
- Integration with Storage Spaces. The Storage Spaces feature in Windows Server 2012 provides a mechanism to virtualized cluster storage on groups of inexpensive disks. It can integrate with CSVs to permit scale-out access to data. For more information, see Storage Spaces Overview.
- Ability to scan and repair volumes with zero offline time. The NTFS file system identifies, logs, and repairs anomalies without affecting the availability of CSVs.
- A Distributed Network Name (DNN) that provides an access point for client connections to the Scale-Out File Servers.
- A Scale-out File Server resource type that supports Scale-out File Services.
- Cluster Shared Volumes (CSVs) for storage. For more information, see Cluster Shared Volumes earlier in this topic.
- Integration with File Services features to configure the clustered role for the Scale-Out File Server, in addition to the general file server clustered roles.
- Improved performance: Validation tests, especially storage validation tests, run significantly faster.
- Targeted validation of new LUNs. Administrators can test a specific new LUN (disk), rather than testing all LUNs every time they test storage.
- Integration of validation with WMI. Applications and scripts can programmatically consume cluster validation status is through Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI).
- New validation tests. The new tests for CSVs and for Hyper-V and virtual machines (when the Hyper-V role is installed) complement the functionality introduced in Windows Server 2012.
- Validation test awareness of replicated hardware. These validation tests help support multi-site environments.
- Ability to create cluster computer objects in targeted organizational units (OUs), or by default in the same OUs as the cluster nodes. Failover cluster dependencies on AD DS align with the delegated domain administration model that is used in many IT organizations.
- Automated repair of cluster virtual computer objects (VCOs) in case they are deleted accidentally.
- Cluster access only to read-only domain controllers. This supports cluster deployments in branch office or perimeter network scenarios.
- Ability of the cluster to start with no AD DS dependencies. This configuration enables certain virtualized data center scenarios.
- Simplified Quorum Configuration Wizard. The Quorum Configuration Wizard has been simplified and integrates well with both new features and existing quorum functionality.
- Assign votes to nodes. The administrator can specify which nodes have votes in determining quorum (by default, all nodes have a vote).
- Dynamic quorum. With dynamic quorum, cluster administrators can now automatically manage the quorum vote assignment for a node based on the state of the node. This feature increases the availability of the cluster in more scenarios than previously.
- Export and re-import of Hyper-V virtual machines.
- Migration to CSV disks.
- Mapping of storage and virtual networks.
- Reuse of existing storage.
- Cluster-wide. The task is scheduled on all cluster nodes.
- Any node. The task is scheduled on a single, random node.
- Resource specific. The task is scheduled only on a node that owns a specified cluster resource.
- Managing cluster registry checkpoints, including cryptographic checkpoints.
- Creating Scale-Out File Servers.
- Monitoring of virtual machine applications.
- Updating the properties of a Distributed Network Name resource.
- Creating and managing clustered tasks.
- Creating a highly available iSCSI Target Server.
|To use the Failover Clustering Windows PowerShell cmdlets, you must install the Failover Cluster module for Windows PowerShell that is included with the Failover Clustering Tools. For a complete list of the cmdlets, see Failover Clustering Cmdlets in Windows PowerShell.|
- The Cluster.exe command-line tool is deprecated, but it can be optionally installed with the Failover Clustering Tools. Failover Clustering Windows PowerShell cmdlets provide functionality that is generally equivalent to Cluster.exe commands. For more information, see Mapping Cluster.exe Commands to Windows PowerShell Cmdlets for Failover Clusters.
- The Cluster Automation Server (MSClus) COM interface is deprecated, but it can be optionally installed with the Failover Clustering Tools.
- Support for 32-bit cluster resource DLLs is deprecated, but 32-bit DLLs can be optionally installed. Cluster resource DLLs should be updated to 64-bit.
- The Print Server role is removed from the High Availability Wizard, and it cannot be configured in Failover Cluster Manager.
- The Add-ClusterPrintServerRole cmdlet is deprecated, and it is not supported in Windows Server 2012.