I have not worked with a Server Core install before. We will soon be moving from old hardware running Server 2012 (with GUI) for our hyper-v cluster to new hardware and plan to install Server 2012r2. I have read that going Server Core is better for system resources and security.

In this specific instance - using these machines as a cluster to run hyper-v machines, should I use Server Core, or full install with GUI?

edit: Sorry folks, there are suggestions that this is more subjective than objective. I was not sure if there is a Best Practices here. Thanks for the support.

closed as primarily opinion-based by Sven, joeqwerty, Jenny D, Christopher Perrin, Ward Aug 9 '14 at 18:40

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    Should I put Swiss or American cheese on my ham sandwich? My point being that in my opinion this is opinion based and entirely subjective. Are there advantages and disadvantages to both approaches? Yes. Do what you think is right. Neither installation type is right or wrong. – joeqwerty Aug 7 '14 at 16:14

To figure out if Server Core (or pretty much any other software) is right for you, you must answer the following questions in the affirmative:

  1. Will all the required roles run correctly on Server Core? (Some programs require the GUI to run/properly administer.)
  2. Does my team understand how to properly administer Server Core, or are willing to learn in an affordable fashion? (Affordable here refers to costs in resources including time spent learning, costs involved with learning, and time that could be spent elsewhere instead of learning)
  3. If running Server Core somehow increases administration time/effort, do the benefits of running Server Core outweigh the increased costs? (could include "less hardware is required" arguments)

The Hyper-V service on Server 2012/2012 R2 has no need of the GUI, and it is easily managed from a nearby 8.1 workstation with RSAT, PowerShell or whatever.

(Indeed, the Hyper-V Server product is so stripped down it doesn't include the GUI at all, nor many other things.)

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