Windows Server 2012 is certainly an interesting OS. Yes many of the Windows Server 2008 R2 items are still in there, Administrative Tools and the Control Panel items, but they are certainly not the stars of the show. Windows Server has focused on a tool to aid in management for some time. The Server Manager single-pane-of-glass idea has been so/so in previous releases. Sure you could work with the local server and do a number of things right at the first screen, but that is as far as the tool went. Connecting to other instances was non-existent and didn't seem to be in the cards.
Windows Server 2012 has corrected these issues and provided as much of a single pane-of-glass into your infrastructure as possible (with a GUI). Because I am still learning PowerShell and trying to get my head around all that it has to offer, I am not quite as comfortable with Server Core as I probably should be. Until that happens, the Server Manager will be something I rely on going forward. I know that it will eventually be replaced by the PS> prompt and require that I can do everything from the command line, but luckily for me, that is not the case just yet.
Things I like about Server Manager
These are the most noticeable reasons that I am a fan of Server Manager. I realize that they are not the most technical or the most challenging things to like even about Server Manager as an application let alone the whole of Windows Server 2012, but sometimes the ease of use and up-front availability of something just wins.
I am digging into PowerShell fairly regularly as well, there might be another post about that here soon too.
For another take on Server Manager, check out Mike Otey’s article in Windows IT Pro. Mike covers some of his favorite Server Manager features including the new UI, multi-server management, and server groups. Let us know what your favorite features are. - www.windowsitpro.com/.../windows-server-2012-server-manager-features-144227