Windows Server

Manage Windows Server 2008 : Work with Preconfigured MMCs

10/17/2010 5:06:08 PM
Although there are many preconfigured MMCs, in this section, we focus on just two MMCs that are directly associated with managing your Windows Server 2008 OS:
  • Server Manager

  • Computer Manger


There are preconfigured MMCs for just about all the Microsoft applications and roles, such as Exchange, SQL, and IIS, to name just a few. In addition to these, third-party vendors develop applications that also allow you to use an MMC.

Server Manager

The Server Manager MMC contains the snap-ins that allow you to accomplish the following tasks:

  • Add or remove server roles

  • Add or remove server features

  • Monitor system events

  • Manage devices

  • Schedule tasks

  • Manage local users and groups

  • Configure Windows Firewall

  • Configure storage

  • Perform backups

Computer Manager

There is some overlap in terms of the tools in Server Manager and in Computer Manager. You may also remember Computer Manager from previous versions of Windows Server (2000/2003). A couple obvious items that you do not see in Computer Manager but do see in Server Manager are the roles and features snap-ins. But as you compare Server Manager and in Computer Manager, as shown in Figure 1, you also find many others missing. So when would you choose one over the other? Well, basically, where they overlap, it’s up to you. In these cases, Microsoft has given you multiple ways to accomplish identical tasks. Two specific snap-ins are available in Computer Manager but not in Server Manager:

  • Routing and Remote Access

  • Shared Folders

Figure 1. Comparison of Server Manager and Computer Manager.

Routing and Remote Access

As the title of this snap-in suggests, you can configure two functions: routing and remote access. A router is used to separate network segments or subnets. With the routing portion of the Routing and Remote Access snap-in, you have the ability to configure your server to act as a software router. This would be okay for small subnets, with not too much traffic passing from one subnet to another (for example, in a test environment). When traffic increases (for example, in any production environment), you will use hardware routers to accomplish this task.


It is strongly suggested that you use a hardware router even in a test or development environment. When developing or testing new technologies, you will want the testing done in an environment that is close, if not identical, to your production environment.

The remote access portion of the Routing and Remote Access snap-in allows you to configure the server to provide two types of remote connectivity: VPN and dial-up. Remote access allows users to connect to the organization’s network as if they are local. For example, they can connect to drives using Windows Explorer and map to network printers, also Universal Naming Convention (UNC) paths are fully supported.

Shared Folders

The Shared Folders snap-in allows you to see what folders are shared on the server, how many sessions (connections) there are to the shares, and what shared files are open. This snap-in is truly a useful tool when managing your server. Say that you needed to reboot the server and want to see if there are any active sessions to the shares. From the session view, you can easily see who is connected, from where they are connected, how long they have been connected, and even how long the session has been idle. In some cases, you may get a call that a file is in use and should not be—maybe someone has left a file open on his or her workstation and left for the day. You will be able to see whether the file is open and what user has it open. If needed, you can close that open file by using this tool. (It is usually a good idea to make sure the person asking you to close the file has seniority over the person who has the file open.)

Let’s now take a look at some other tools that help you manager Windows Server 2008.

Other -----------------
- Manage Windows Server 2008 : Work with the Task Scheduler
- Manage Windows Server 2008 Using Remote Desktop
- Manage Windows Server 2008: Configure Backups and Perform Restores
- Windows Server 2008 : Determine Which Terminal Services Roles to Install
- Windows Server 2008 : Install the TS Gateway Role Service and TS Web Access Role Service
- Windows Server 2008 : Install the TS Licensing Role Service
- Windows Server 2008 : Install the Terminal Server Role Service
- Windows Server 2008 : Configure a Load-Balanced Farm with TS Session Broker
- Windows Server 2008 : Configure the TS Gateway Manager
- Windows Server 2008 : Configure the TS RemoteApp Manager
- Windows Server 2008 : Manage Terminal Services
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