Sign in to follow this  
paulecoyote

MS Windows 2003 Server - possible to develop and play games on?

Recommended Posts

paulecoyote    1065
Hi, I've got a licenced Windows 2000 Pro box at home but right now cannot afford a Windows XP Pro licence. Work brought me Visual Studio 2003 Enterprise Architect, and from that pack I do have an unused licence of Windows 2003 Server. I'm sure you see where I'm going with this... Windows 2000 is starting to be dropped from main stream support, and shortly will be dropped altogether I expect. Now I know that Windows 2003 is not really supposed to be for games, but I saw that the newest DirectX SDK is compatible with it. I know Win2003 Server has got a built in firewall so I don't need to find one of those, but currently for win2k I use the excellent freebie AVG for virus checking - but i know that will not install on a server box. Though I may be able to wangle a licence for a virus checker from work. Anyway does anyone have any personal experience developing and running games on Windows 2003 Server? I want to know if it's worth the risk of upgrading a slightly outdated but otherwise very healthy installation (being a firm beliver "if it's not broken, don't fix it"... but I think it's closing on it's use by date). http://www.msfn.org/win2k3/xpgames.htm seems to think it's possible - but I want some personal experience from you guys! [smile]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ApochPiQ    23005
My development box is a Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition system, and my main testing/gaming box runs Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition. My testing/goofing-around-on-the-sofa laptop runs Windows 2000 Advanced Server.

It is certainly possible, but I highly advise against it unless you are very good at configuring Windows. If you have anything less than extensive experience managing and operating a server OS, you're going to have trouble. The Windows Server editions are not designed for the typical end user, and a lot of the "friendliness" and protect-you-from-yourself crap in, say, Windows XP is not present. It's very easy to get into a lot of trouble with it.

So, basically, attempt at your own risk, and expect to be thoroughly laughed out of the building if you ever ask for technical support and say you're running a server OS. Large companies rarely believe that you have any good reason to be playing games/using applications software on a server (which is a dumb assumption on their part, but still very firmly entrenched) and most small communities will accuse you of piracy and all manner of ugliness. In any case people don't figure on someone being competent enough to run a server OS and still need help with things like drivers or what have you. You're well and truly on your own with this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Anon Mike    1098
The difference between "server" and regular versions of Windows is mostly marketing. Everything that runs on one should run on the other.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
paulecoyote    1065
Nah dont worry about me, I administer a gentoo box and win2k server box and win2k3 box. I know what I'm doing - but as my day job is libraries etc those servers obviously never have any games on, or any gamedev stuff on.

So if everything I need to run will run, and assuming I can get a virus checker it's all okay then? Sweet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ApochPiQ    23005
The worst you'll run into is probably having to run things in XP Compatibility Mode if their version checking routine is stupid. In some extreme cases some things may not work (e.g. I can't get GTA2 to run on any of my 2003 boxes, but works fine on XP) but you should be fine for the most part.

I usually preach the gloom-n'-doom message because I've seen some excitable young newbies get their hands on a Server OS and totally crash and burn. Contrary to popular misconception, there is a pretty big difference in terms of configuration and management; Windows Server comes with a lot of things pre-packaged to run as a server (shock horror!) so it can take some tweaking to turn the box into a regular workstation... but with the experience you've got I doubt you'll have any serious issues [wink]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this