NOTE: Please read THIS important update on the direction of Nano Server prior to using the below resources.

Hello once again everyone!

A few weeks ago, we put on a very special webinar here at Altaro where we had Andrew Mason from the Nano Server team at Microsoft on to answer all of your burning Nano Server questions. Both sessions were very well attended and the number of quality, engaging questions was amazing. It really made for a great webinar!

As we usually do after webinars, this post is intended to act as an ongoing resource for the content that was discuss during said webinar. Below you will find the recording of the webinar for your viewing pleasure in case you missed it, along with a written list of questions and their associated answers below that were not covered verbally during the Q & A due to time constraints.

Revisit the Webinar

Q & A

Q. Will we be able to run the Active Directory role on Nano Server in the future?

A. This is a frequent ask, which you can also vote for on the Windows Server User Voice HERE. We are investigating how to bring this to Nano Server, but at this time I don’t have a timeline to share.

Q. Will WSL eventually get into Nano Server? Could is replace the instance of OpenSSH from GitHub Eventually?

A. WSL was added to Windows 10 to support developer scenarios, so we hadn’t been considering it for Nano Server. This is a remote management scenario, it would be interesting to understand how many people would want this for management, so please vote on User Voice HERE.

Q. Will there be support for boot from USB for Nano Server, Hyper-V nodes for instance?

A. This is not currently planned. There have been a lot of asks for SD boot. If this is an important scenario for you, please vote for it on user voice.

Q. Are there plans to use MS DirectAccess on Nano?

A. This is not currently planned due to the cloud focus we have for Nano Server. If this is an important scenario for you, please vote for it on User Voice.

Q. How does one manage a Nano server if Azure or an Azure Account is unavailable?

A. You can still use the standard MMC tools to remotely manage nano server on-prem, just like any other Windows Server.

Q. Are there any significant changes in licensing for Nano Server?

A. There are some licensing implications when using Nano Server. Altaro has an ebook on licensing Windows Server 2016 that includes some information about Nano Server HERE.

Q. Can you manage a Nano Server host with SCVMM 2012 R2?

A. Unfortunately no. SCVMM 2016 is needed to manage 2016 Nano Server hosts.

Q. Do you see a role for Nano Server in regards to on-prem Hyper-V environments.

A. Absolutely! Nano Server lends itself very well to running as a Hyper-V host. The attack surface is smaller, less resources are needed for the OS, and you have fewer reboots needed due to patching. You can still manage it remotely just like any other Hyper-V host.

Q. How can I use the Anti-Malware options that are available in Nano Server?

A. Nano Server uses a Just-Enough-OS model, in that only the bits needed to run the OS are initially available. There is an Anti-Malware feature available, you just need to install it. More information on installing roles in Nano Server can be found HERE.

Q. Are iSCSI and MPIO usable on Nano Server?

A. Yes they are, they can be installed and managed via PowerShell Remoting.

Q. How do you configure NIC teaming in Nano Server?

A. NIC teaming can be managed and configured via PowerShell. Take note however, that the usual LBFO NIC teaming is not available on Nano Server and you will have to use the new Switch Embedded Teaming (SET) option that was released with Windows Server 2016.

Q. Does Altaro VM Backup support protecting VMs running on a Nano Server Hyper-V Host?

A. As Nano Server is such a radical departure from the usual Microsoft deployment option, we currently do not support backing up VMs on Nano Server hosts. We are currently looking at adding support for this deployment option, but do not have a date that can be provided at this time. Be sure to keep a look out on the Altaro blog for developments in this matter.


That wraps things up for our Q & A follow up post. We had lots of great questions and loved to see everyone actively participating in the webinar! As usual, if you think of any further follow up questions, feel free to ask them in the comments section below and we’ll get back to you ASAP!

Thanks for reading!