With the recent announcement of Windows Server 2012 R2 Preview, we are happy to reveal the current state of driver support for Dell servers to help make your experience better.

Dell has been working with Microsoft to bring you the best possible experience on Dell hardware. As a part of this effort we’ve worked with internal teams and vendors to submit drivers to Microsoft for inclusion in the Windows media. As a result, this Microsoft release has the majority of our device drivers in the Windows media “inbox”.

Having a driver inbox reduces the need to download drivers manually from Dell’s website saving time and making support tasks easier.  Looking forward, later Windows Server 2012 R2 releases should incorporate additional/updated inbox drivers for our devices. However, as a disclaimer, because this is a pre-release product, Microsoft or a particular vendor may alter the features or types of hardware supported before release.  

In addition to our newer 12th Generation & 11th Generation servers, This Microsoft release of Windows Server 2012 R2 has been installed successfully on 9th Generation PowerEdge Servers (i.e. PE1950, PE2900, PE2950, etc.)

System Requirements and Installation Information for Windows Server 2012 R2 Preview

As always, Dell will provide updated Windows Server 2012 R2 drivers on support.dell.com as they become available, usually after our launch.

Below is a summary of the device drivers available in Windows Server 2012 R2 Preview:

Network:

  • Broadcom NetXtreme I & II Gigabit Family on Dell platforms
  • Broadcom NetXtreme Gigabit Fiber & Ethernet Family on Dell platforms
  • Broadcom BCM570xx NetXtreme II GigE (NDIS) Family on Dell platforms
  • Broadcom BCM577xx NetXtreme II 10 GigE (NDIS) Family on Dell platforms
  • Broadcom BCM578xx NetXtreme I & II 10 GigE SFP+ Family on Dell platforms
  • Broadcom NetXtreme II 10 Gigabit Ethernet
  • Intel LOM & Network Daughter Cards on 12G platforms
  • Intel Gigabit Family of Server Adapters on Dell platforms
  • Intel 10GbE Ethernet Family of Server Adapters on Dell platforms
  • Brocade 10GbE Ethernet Adapter on Dell platforms

Storage:

  • Dell™ PowerEdge™ RAID Controller (PERC) 5, 6, 7, 8
  • Dell™ SAS RAID 5 and 6 family
  • Dell Internal tape adapters
  • Emulex LightPulse 8GB (PCIe 2.0) /4GB (PCIe 1.0a) /2GB (PCIe 1.0) Dell adapters
  • Brocade 4G/ 8G/ 10G/ 16G Fiber Channel/FCoE series Dell adapters

 

Dell Inbox driver exceptions in Windows Server 2012 R2 Preview:

Listed below are a few device drivers which are not inbox in the Windows Server 2012 R2 Preview. Dell is currently working with vendors to provide these drivers as Out-of-Box and will be posted on support.dell.com when available, usually after OS launch. 

Exceptions:

  • Software RAID PERC S110 on the Dell Value Line of Servers
  • QLogic 82xx CNA cards (FCoE & iSCSI)
  • Qlogic 81xx CNA Adapters – NDIS & FCoE
  • QLogic 246x and 256x Fiber Channel series Dell adapters and 82xx CNA adapters (NDIS only)
  • Broadcom BCM57840 NetXtreme II 10 GigE
  • AMD & NVIDIA Add-On display driver for Dell 11G & 12G PowerEdge servers
  • Shared PERC8 RAID Controller on the PowerEdge™ VRTX
  • Matrox G200W & G200eR embedded video controllers
  • Dell PCIeSSD storage controller
  • Intel Romley Chipset Management Node Driver

Because Windows Server 2012 R2 Preview is a pre-release product still in active development, Dell will only provide limited support for Windows Server 2012 R2 and it is not recommended for use in a production environment until validation testing has been completed and the OS has been released for sale. Feel free to check out what’s new in Windows Server 2012 R2 on your test servers and let us know what you think.

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This article was originally written by Barun Chaudhary & Michael Schroeder