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I have just installed Windows Server 2008. The server has a series of data drives shared out, which works as well in XP as it does here. What will I gain by adding the "File Server" role?

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closed as off topic by mdpc, kce, Dave M, gharper, Ward Apr 11 '13 at 4:56

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2 Answers

up vote 3 down vote accepted

It will enable DFS, DFS Replication, NFS and other handy file server features that are more robust than a SMB share.

edit: Link to the technet page with features: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc730983%28WS.10%29.aspx

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In addition to what Mark said. XP is limited to 10 CALs. Where Window Server products allow you to purchase as many CALs as you need in your environment. In English this means that you can have more than 10 clients access the shares at the same time. If your network is small though this may not be a factor but in most networks it's a limitation that rules out using XP as a file server.

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Good to point out with regards to a client OS vs a server OS, but the question was really a question specifically relating to the Windows Server 2008 role called "File Services", not a generic file server. –  squillman Aug 15 '09 at 4:36
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XP is limited to 10 client connections, but these are not client access licences, so to be pedantic your first sentence shouldn't say "CALs". –  Richard Aug 15 '09 at 9:09
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