The Most Popular Version of Windows Server, Ranked

Choose the version you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Jun 19, 2024 07:19
Choosing the right version of Windows Server can greatly influence the efficiency and capabilities of IT infrastructure. With various editions released over the years, each tailored to different needs and technologies, it becomes crucial to identify which ones stand out in real-world applications. This is where knowing the community’s preference can be a game-changer. By participating in this ranking, users contribute their experiences and preferences, helping to highlight the most favored versions of Windows Server. This dynamic tally not only reflects current trends but also assists newcomers in making informed decisions. The insights gained here can guide you through the complexities of selecting a server version that best fits your requirements.

What Is the Most Popular Version of Windows Server?

  1. 1

    Windows Server 2019

    The most recent version of Windows Server with enhanced security, performance, and container support.
    • Release Date: October 2, 2018
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  2. 2

    Windows Server 2012 R2

    Focused on improvements to virtualization, management, storage, networking, virtual desktop infrastructure, access and information protection, web services, and more.
    • Release Date: October 18, 2013
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  3. 3

    Windows Server 2016

    Introduced Windows Server Containers and Nano Server for a more lightweight, modular deployment.
    • Release Date: September 26, 2016
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  4. 4

    Windows Server 2008 R2

    First Windows Server version to only support 64-bit processors. Introduced features like DirectAccess and BranchCache.
    • Release Date: October 22, 2009
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  5. 5

    Windows Server 2003 R2

    An update of Windows Server 2003, focusing on improvements to Active Directory, Storage Management, and better support for web services.
    • Release Date: December 6, 2005
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  6. 6

    Windows Server 2012

    Introduced a new user interface based on Metro design language and a new version of Windows Task Manager.
    • Release Date: September 4, 2012
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  7. 7

    Windows Server 2003

    Introduced a number of new features, such as Internet Information Services (IIS) 6.0, and better Active Directory compatibility.
    • Release Date: April 24, 2003
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  8. 8

    Windows Server 2008

    Built on the same code base as Windows Vista; introduced Server Core, a minimal server installation option.
    • Release Date: February 27, 2008
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  9. 9

    Windows 2000 Server

    Known for its increased reliability and scalability compared to previous versions, introduced Active Directory.
    • Release Date: February 17, 2000
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid
  10. 10

    Windows NT 4.0 Server

    Introduced the concept of domains and internet support. It was a major step in developing Windows as a server platform.
    • Release Date: July 31, 1996
    • Kernel Type: Hybrid

Missing your favorite version?

Error: Failed to render graph
No discussion started, be the first!

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular version of Windows Server. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or version is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 207 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each version once every 24 hours. The rank of each version is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.


Additional Information

More about the Most Popular Version of Windows Server

Windows Server 2019
Rank #1 for the most popular version of Windows Server: Windows Server 2019 (Source)
Windows Server is a key product in the world of business technology. It powers many of the servers that run the internet, corporate networks, and data centers. The operating system has evolved over the years, becoming more robust and feature-rich.

The early versions laid the groundwork. They provided basic server functions like file sharing, print services, and user management. These features were essential for small businesses and large enterprises alike. As technology advanced, so did Windows Server. Each new version brought improvements in security, performance, and usability.

One of the most popular versions of Windows Server built on this foundation. It offered a range of features that made it a favorite among IT professionals. It improved on previous versions by adding better support for virtualization. Virtualization allows multiple virtual machines to run on a single physical server. This increases efficiency and reduces costs.

The operating system also introduced enhanced security features. These included better encryption, improved identity management, and advanced threat detection. These features helped businesses protect sensitive data and comply with regulations.

Another key feature was its integration with cloud services. This allowed businesses to extend their on-premises infrastructure to the cloud. It provided a hybrid approach that gave the best of both worlds. Companies could keep critical data on-premises while leveraging the scalability of the cloud.

Windows Server also improved storage capabilities. It introduced new file systems that offered better performance and reliability. This was crucial for businesses that needed to store and manage large amounts of data. The operating system also supported high-availability configurations. This ensured that services remained online even if hardware failed.

The user interface was another area of focus. The goal was to make it easier for administrators to manage servers. The operating system included a graphical user interface that was intuitive and user-friendly. It also offered command-line tools for those who preferred scripting and automation.

The popularity of this version can be attributed to its balance of features, performance, and ease of use. It met the needs of businesses of all sizes. Small businesses could use it to set up basic networks. Large enterprises could deploy it in complex, multi-server environments.

Its release was well-received by the IT community. Reviews highlighted its stability, security, and versatility. Many businesses upgraded from older versions to take advantage of the new features. It became a standard in many data centers and corporate networks.

In summary, this version of Windows Server stands out for its comprehensive feature set and reliability. It played a significant role in shaping modern IT infrastructure. Its impact is still felt today, as many organizations continue to rely on it for their server needs. The operating system set a high bar for future versions, ensuring its place in the history of business technology.

Share this article