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What's New in the Web Server (IIS) Role (IIS 7)

Updated: December 31, 2008

Many features have been added or enhanced in Internet Information Services (IIS) 7.5, which is the foundation of the Web Server role in Windows Server® 2008 R2.

The following changes are available in the Web Server (IIS) role in Windows Server 2008 R2:

  • Integrated extensions

    • WebDAV and FTP

    • Request Filtering

    • Administration Pack modules

  • Management enhancements

    • Best Practices Analyzer

    • Windows PowerShell™ Provider and cmdlets

    • Configuration logging and tracing

  • Application hosting enhancements

    • Service hardening

    • Managed service accounts

    • Hostable Web Core

    • Failed Request Tracing for FastCGI

  • Enhancements to .NET support on Server Core

Building on the extensible and modular architecture introduced with IIS 7.5, the new IIS 7.5 integrates and enhances existing extensions while still providing additional extensibility and customization.

WebDAV and FTP functionality available in IIS 7 has been greatly enhanced by incorporating many new features that enable Web authors to publish content more reliably and securely than before. The new FTP and WebDAV modules also offer Web server administrators more options for authentication, auditing, and logging.

The Request Filtering module, previously available as an extension for IIS 7, helps prevent potentially harmful requests from reaching the server by allowing you to restrict or block specific HTTP requests.

Extension modules previously available for IIS 7 as part of the IIS Administration Pack offer additional tools to help you administer your IIS 7.5 Web server from IIS Manager. These modules include the Configuration Editor and UI extensions that will help you manage Request Filtering rules, FastCGI, and ASP.NET application settings.

IIS 7.5 has the same distributed and delegated management architecture as IIS 7, but IIS 7.5 also offers new administration tools.

Best Practices Analyzer (BPA) is a management tool that can be accessed by using Server Manager and Windows PowerShell. BPA can help administrators reduce best practice violations by scanning an IIS 7.5 Web server and reporting when potential configuration issues are found.

The IIS module for Windows PowerShell is a Windows PowerShell snap-in that allows you to perform IIS administrative tasks and manage IIS configuration and run-time data. In addition, a collection of task-oriented cmdlets provide a simple way to manage Web sites, Web applications, and Web servers.

Configuration logging and tracing allows you to audit access to the IIS configuration and to track successful or failed modifications by enabling any new logs that become available in the Event Viewer.

Offering a variety of new features that help increase security and improve diagnostics, IIS 7.5 is an even more flexible and manageable platform for many types of Web applications, such as ASP.NET and PHP.

Building on the IIS 7 application pool isolation model that increased security and reliability, every IIS 7.5 application pool now runs each process as a unique, less-privileged identity.

Domain accounts that have passwords managed by the host computer are now supported as service identities in IIS 7.5. This means that server administrators no longer have to worry about expiring application pool passwords.

Core IIS Web engine components can be consumed or hosted by other applications. This lets IIS components service HTTP requests directly in an application. This is useful for enabling basic Web server capabilities for custom applications or for debugging applications.

In IIS 7.5, PHP developers that use the FastCGI module can implement IIS trace calls within their applications. Developers can then troubleshoot application errors by using IIS Failed Request Tracing to debug the code during development.

The Server Core installation option of Windows Server 2008 R2 provides support for the .NET Framework 2.0, 3.0, 3.5.1, and 4.0. This means you can host ASP.NET applications, perform remote management tasks from IIS Manager, and locally run cmdlets included with the Windows PowerShell Provider for IIS.

Any business or organization that hosts or develops Web sites or Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) services can benefit from the improvements made in IIS 7.5.

The following groups might be interested in these changes:

  • Enterprise IT planners and designers for organizations.

  • IT professionals who deploy or administer IIS.

  • Developers who create Web sites or WCF services.

  • Internet service providers (ISPs) or similar organizations that provide Web hosting.

This feature is available in all editions.

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