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Item #: 9B-32-416-577

Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Essentials - OEM

Item #: 9B-32-416-577  |  Mfr. Part #: G3S-00123  |  UNSPSC: 43233004
  • 25 User limit and 50 devices - No CALs ( Client Access Licenses) required
  • Simplified user management and easy file sharing
  • Includes PC backup and optional connection to Office 365

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    Top Favorable Review

    Good but interface inappropriate

    Price (flat rate for upto 25 users without having to by CALS) Easy set up, literally took 3 minutes to install and fifteen minutes to setup network I love the dashboard, puts many utilities in one place Remote access is good Read more
    — Stephen W. 4/9/2013

    Top Critical Review

    !!! TERRIBLE !!!

    You can't run this server as a Workgroup Server. The software SHUTS DOWN AUTOMATICALLY if you demote the server. I find this ridiculous, seeing 3/4 PC's I have are Win 10 Home; and Win 10 Home PC's can't join a domain. Avoid this product at ... Read more
    — Anonymous 9/8/2016

    Learn more about Windows Server 2012 Essentials




    Windows Server 2012 Essentials
    Operating System
    Operating Systems Supported


    Server Operating System. Windows Server 2012 product technologies provide the core of Windows Server 2012 Essentials. Windows Server 2012 Essentials provides an end-to-end integrated setup that installs and configures many of the roles and features of Windows Server 2012 according to best practices configuration for small business environments.

    Data Protection. Windows Server 2012 Essentials leverages several new features available in Windows Server 2012 to provide greatly improved data protection capabilities. The new Storage Spaces feature allows customers to aggregate the physical storage capacity of disparate hard drives, dynamically add hard drives, and to create volumes with specified levels of resilience.

    Data Protection, continued. Windows Server 2012 Essentials can perform complete system backups and bare-metal restores of the server itself as well as the client computers connected to the network - now with support for volumes larger than 2 terabytes.

    Anywhere Access. Remote Web Access provides a stream-lined, touch-friendly browser experience for accessing applications and data from virtually anywhere they have an Internet connection using almost any device.

    Health Monitoring. Windows Server 2012 Essentials monitors its own health status and the status of client computers running Windows 7, Windows 8, and Mac OS X version 10.5 and above. Health status notifies you of issues or problems related to computer backups, server storage, low disk space, and more.

    Workload Flexibility. Windows Server 2012 Essentials has been designed to allow customers the flexibility to choose which applications and services run on-premises and which run in the cloud.

    Extensibility. Windows Server 2012 Essentials builds on the extensibility model of Windows SBS 2011 Essentials, which allows other software vendors to add capabilities and features to the core product, and adds a new set of Web Services APIs.


    Use of this OEM System Builder Channel software is subject to the terms of the Microsoft OEM System Builder License. This software is intended for pre-installation on a new personal computer for resale. This OEM System Builder Channel software requires the assembler to provide end user support for the Windows software and cannot be transferred to another computer once it is installed. To acquire Windows software with support provided by Microsoft please see our full package "Retail" product offerings.

    Customer Reviews of Windows Server 2012 Essentials

    Do you own this product? WRITE A REVIEW

    4 out of 5 eggs Based on 5 Reviews

    See all reviews

    • Filter Results
    • (2)
    • (0)
    • (0)
    • (1)
    • Anonymous
    • Verified Owner

    1 out of 5 eggs !!! TERRIBLE !!!

    Pros: None

    Cons: You can't run this server as a Workgroup Server. The software SHUTS DOWN AUTOMATICALLY if you demote the server. I find this ridiculous, seeing 3/4 PC's I have are Win 10 Home; and Win 10 Home PC's can't join a domain. Avoid this product at all costs.

    Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

    • Nevin L.

    5 out of 5 eggs Faster and more reliable than WHS 2011

    Pros: - Significantly faster for all aspects than WHS v2 (2011). Mapped drives come up instantly without the brief pause that occurred with WHS
    - Servio works well with PS3...more reliable with less erros
    - VPN integration allows me to map my surface pro 2 via cellphone to all connected flawlessly with very little setup
    - Suppors Surface Pro 2 backup...I haven't been brave enough to attempt a restore/rebuild of my SP2
    - Metro interface (which I loved after 3rd month of Win8) works...even if a little odd in server setting. It basically puts all critical apps on one screen and your interface is integrated across your desktop, surface pro, and server interface
    - Supports ios apps for monitoring/connecting.
    - Ability to do remote desktop from web (I think?) but you must choose remote desktop OR folder view
    - Has domain capabilities...for those who know how to take advantage of...

    Cons: - Cost....but benefits have definitely been worth every penny!
    - Remote connect gives you two different methods...but unfortunately you choose which one you'd like. Therefore, going to will take you to standard folder view OR to a remote desktop...I wish you could choose your interface each time you connect.
    - No graphical drive apps unlike some of the apps that could be used in WHS. A little tedious using the numerical table view
    - Some of the server folders can't be deleted easily.

    Bottom Line: Don't hesitate if considering purchasing versus WHS....worth every penny!

    Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

    • Anonymous

    5 out of 5 eggs Works as expected

    Pros: Perfect for most small businesses.

    The centralized PC backup feature is awesome, probably my favorite feature. Dead hard drive in a user's machine? No problem! Pop in a new one and do a bare-metal restore from the server, up and running in no time. Same with virus damage, etc...

    Also includes 25 CALs so you don't have to worry about licensing. If you need more, you can do a quick and painless in-place license transition to Server 2012 Standard. You can even continue to use the Essentials features(such as client PC backup) up to 75 users. Keep in mid if you do transition to Standard, you are required to buy CALs.

    Cons: Stupid 'Modern' interface. Useless, aggravating, totally inappropriate for a server.

    I guess I can see the point on a tablet for example, but on a server????

    If it weren't for StartIsBack I think I would go crazy...

    Bottom Line: Want to clarify some points made by previous reviewer:

    -No, Essentials cannot be run alongside an existing domain controller. It must be the only DC in the network, this is well-documented...HOWEVER, you can install 2012 Essentials in MIGRATION MODE which allows you to migrate your AD from your old server to the new one. You get a 21-day grace period where it can run alongside your existing DC while you complete the migration. I have done it and it works perfectly...

    -Like I stated in 'Pros', if you outgrow Essentials, you can do an in-place license transition up to Standard. This, too, is documented...and it works, trust me...

    -Yes, you do need to have a NIC driver installed to complete setup, this is also documented. Who is going to have a server with no NIC?? Windows has drivers for most NICs, but if not, all you have to do is install it thru Device Manager, reboot, and your good to go. Its not rocket science...

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

    • Jeremy B.
      • FROM:
      • Box Elder County Credit Union
        IT Manager
      • - Small/Medium Business
      • - 20 - 49 employees

    2 out of 5 eggs Purchase for Standa Alone Network Only

    Pros: If you are a very small business and do not already have an Active Directory Server, purchase this product. Easy setup for a brand new network.

    Cons: Doesn't allow you to join to an existing domain, demote it as a Domain Crontroller, DNS server etc... if you have an existing network forget about joining your existing Domain. Can't upgrade this license at all. Had a really hard time installing this to an ESX VMWare server but finally got it working. Had to load the OS partially then installed the VMWare Tools when it told me I didn't have a network driver. After installing the VMWare tools it took right off and installed properly.

    Bottom Line: I'm kicking myself for buying this product, I should have just went with the Server 2012 Standard edition.

    4 out of 14 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

    • Stephen W.
    • Verified Owner

    5 out of 5 eggs Good but interface inappropriate

    Pros: Price (flat rate for upto 25 users without having to by CALS)
    Easy set up, literally took 3 minutes to install and fifteen minutes to setup network
    I love the dashboard, puts many utilities in one place
    Remote access is good

    Cons: The Windows 8 interface is very inappropriate for a server machine, and the tiles make it a little difficult at first to do what you want.
    Does not have SQL server out of the box
    Does not have HyperV (VM)
    Supports only upto 64 GB RAM
    Joining 32 bit PCs to the network using the recommended web connect does not work as the application to do this is a 64 bit (however, there are obviously workarounds but I thought that was a good time to upgrade the OS of the clients which all had x64 cpus to the x64 OS).

    Bottom Line: Was looking for a fast and robust server for a small business having upgraded from SBS 2003.

    Asus Z9PA-D8 MB
    2 x Intel Xeon 2620 Six Core CPUS
    8 x 8 GB Kingston DDR 3 1600 RAM
    Western Digital RE WD2000FYYZ 2TB 7200 in RAID 0
    Rosewill FORTRESS Series FORTRESS-750 750W

    11 out of 11 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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