How to Run Pre-1709 Container Images On Windows Server 2016 Version 1709 Host

In this blog post, I’ll show how to run pre-1709 Windows Nano Server 2016 images on a 1709 Container Host.

With the release of Windows Server 2016 Version 1709 and the changes to Windows Nano Server 2016, Pre-1709 Container Images can no longer run on 1709 host.

The Solution

To work around this limitation Microsoft, offer Hyper-V Isolation that needs to be enabled on the Container host.

The Hyper-V Isolation technology adds an extra protection to a Windows Container by running the Container Inside a virtualization layer similar to a virtual machine.

Note: If you are using a Windows Server 2016 Version 1709 Host on Microsoft Azure Hyper-V Isolation is already enabled by default.

Enable Hyper-V Isolation

To enable Hyper-V Isolation to run the cmdlet below and restart the computer when done.

Add-WindowsFeature Hyper-V
Restart-computer

Run Pre-1709 Containers

In the example below, I’ll create a new Windows Nano Server 2016 Container using Hyper-V Isolation

As you can see below the build number is Pre-1709 with full PowerShell 5.1 Installed

Get-ComputerInfo | more

As you can see, Using Hyper-V Isolation I have the flexibility to run Pre-1709 Images and 1709 on the same Containers Host.

The best thing about Hyper-V Isolation Is that there is no need to manage it and deal with it.

Conclusion

I strongly recommend enabling Hyper-V Isolation and any 1709 Container Host simply because of the flexibility it gives us.

Hyper-V Isolation is also the technology behind Linux Containers On Windows (LCOW) which will become GA soon.

About Windows Server 2016 1709

First announced five months ago, Windows Server 2016 version 1709 released a Semi-Annual Channel with 18 months support (more details below).

Long and Semi-Annual Channel

As Announced a few months ago, Windows Server will be available in two release modules.

  1. Long-Term Servicing channel – This Is the current and most familiar module where a new operating system version is released every 2-3 years with 5 years support cycle.
  2. Semi-Annual Channel – This new module will offer two new releases every year with new features and roles, support will be available for 18 months.

The Semi-Annual Channel will only be available for Volume Licensing Customers with Software Assurance.

If you don’t have Software Assurance you can use Microsoft Azure where it’s available.

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