SharePoint 2016 installation offer minimal role configuration where Administrator can choose from one of different roles:
- Single Server Farm
- Front End
- Distributed Cache
You will choose the role during installation, and the installer will activate only specific services based on selected role.
So, then how can we change the role after SharePoint has been provisioned?
Fortunately, Microsoft provides simple user interface to convert from one role to another. To change the role of current server, you need to open Central Administrator => System Settings.
In the Servers section, click Convert server role in this farm.
And you will see the options, the same roles which are available during the setup. Select the new role, and click Apply, then your server will change role according to the selected option.