AdminPak for Windows Vista

Updated News Here

Here is a brief update to a problem a lot of us have encountered, installing the AdminPak on Windows Vista to support your server environment. Take a look here for my previous post on this that has the only supported work around from Microsoft.

I”ve heard from some pretty reliable sources at Microsoft that there is indeed going to be no update to the AdminPak for Windows Vista. While this is sad I understand their direction. They would prefer you to specify a management server that is running Terminal Services that you remote desktop into and perform your management of your servers. This works great for companies the size of the one I work for (Intel) because of the advanced setup we have where everything is behind a firewall. This way you can restrict which servers have access inside the firewall and you don”t have to worry about setting rules for each client system that is going to perform these tasks.

While it works great for larger companies there is still a gap for smaller companies. I”m no expert on Small Business Server but the problem doesn”t rely with the server but instead is a problem with the client…and in this case Windows Vista. If you”re in this boat I would recommend that you remote desktop to a server hopefully not your Domain Controller but if that is all you have then that is what you will have to connect to. Once connected then you do all your administration from that server.

I really wish I could have posted some wonderful news about a new AdminPak but it really doesn”t look like there will ever be one.

34 Responses to “AdminPak for Windows Vista”

  1.   John Jacobsen Says:

    It took me a while to get used to Vista and now I pretty much like it for the most part. The only thorn in my side is the missing adminpak…

    Excellent comment about size of company Brian. I do work at a smaller company and creating a terminal server for the sole purpose of server administration really isn”t feasible for us.

    As it is, I have a junky old AMD workstation with XP installed that I TS into to do the administration I”m unable to do from Vista. Terribly inefficient IMO.


  2.   ikszkom Says:

    I don”t see why to force everyone to this management server/firewall lockdown setup, which you can do today if you want.
    Adminpak is an option and it would be a really bad idea to remove this option.
    I will be really upset if there won”t be a fully working adminpak on vista and i”m serious…


  3.   BrianM Says:

    Perhaps the reason why Microsoft did this was because they want smaller companies to use Small Business Server but IMO that is only good for really small companies. There are plenty of small companies out there that have a large infrastruture footprint (online companies) that this just doesn”t work with. Very sad indeed.


  4.   Mark Says:

    Others will build this capability into tools to sell us just as they did before the AdminPak was shipped.


  5.   Greg Porter Says:

    I downloaded and install the adminpak for 2003 and have it working. I had to create a batch/cmd file following the MS KB articule

    @echo off

    REM RegisterAdminPak.cmd
    REM (c) 2006 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

    set filelist=adprop.dll azroles.dll azroleui.dll ccfg95.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% certadm.dll certmmc.dll certpdef.dll certtmpl.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% certxds.dll cladmwiz.dll clcfgsrv.dll clnetrex.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% cluadmex.dll cluadmmc.dll cmproxy.dll cmroute.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% cmutoa.dll cnet16.dll debugex.dll dfscore.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% dfsgui.dll dhcpsnap.dll dnsmgr.dll domadmin.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% dsadmin.dll dsuiwiz.dll imadmui.dll lrwizdll.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% mprsnap.dll msclus.dll mstsmhst.dll mstsmmc.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% nntpadm.dll nntpapi.dll nntpsnap.dll ntdsbsrv.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% ntfrsapi.dll rasuser.dll rigpsnap.dll rsadmin.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% rscommon.dll rsconn.dll rsengps.dll rsjob.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% rsservps.dll rsshell.dll rssubps.dll rtrfiltr.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% schmmgmt.dll tapisnap.dll tsuserex.dll vsstskex.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% w95inf16.dll w95inf32.dll winsevnt.dll winsmon.dll
    set filelist=%filelist% winsrpc.dll winssnap.dll ws03res.dll

    for %%i in (%filelist%) do (
    echo Registering %%i …
    regsvr32 /s %%i

    Echo Command Completed

    I have even managed to get the WSUS 3.0 console (MMC) to work on Vista with some tweaking.


  6.   JeffG Says:

    Very disappointing news. This sounds like the typical “tough love” response I”ve been hearing more and more recently from Microsoft. Similar to the “learn PowerShell” mantra we”re seeing in Exchange 2007 administration and management. Very sad.


  7.   Me Says:

    Give me a break, wtf uses the AdminPak anymore? With Hyena our group of 7 admins administer 650 Intel Servers all over the Globe. I seriously cannot believe Intel Support Remotes into their servers for routine maintenance. No wonder all the support jobs are going to India!!

    Hyena info can be found here:


  8.   Jared Pickerell Says:

    As a 7-year Microsoft systems administrator, I think this is a VERY bad idea! Please, don”t drop an administration method that you have been supporting since Windows 2000. It works very well and I don”t won”t to have to remote into a server every time I need to perform administrative functions.


  9.   James Says:

    With all the driver model changes I was a little forgiving of Microsoft for not planning to release DX10 on Windows XP….. but to not release an adminpak for Vista, that is incredibly annoying and ignorant of customer demands.


  10.   Robert Holland Says:

    The last time I checked, you still need to install the Adminpak to enable all of Hyena”s features. Especially, if you want to use it to manage an exchange server – you will need the Exchange adminpak.


  11.   Victor Says:

    Greg Porter. Great adaptation of the 2003 admin pak. Works for me. Thanks for the pointer.


  12.   Me Says:

    FYI, Here”s the only requirement for Hyena to integrate with Exchange:

    The only installation prerequisite for using the Exchange integration options in Hyena is that you must have already installed the Microsoft Exchange Administrator program on your client workstation. If you can already manage Exchange recipients from your workstation, then this probably has already been done. Hyena requires the use of certain DLLs for these functions; Microsoft does not allow 3rd party software developers to redistribute these files.

    Important Note: Hyena?s Microsoft Exchange integration features are only available in the Enterprise Edition of Hyena. Hyena?s Standard Edition will allow Exchange information to be viewed or modified only for the first 30 days after installation. This allows the functionality of the Exchange features to be fully evaluated before any additional licenses for it are purchased. For more information on the licensing of the Enterprise Edition, see the Licensing topic.


  13.   Robert Dennis Says:

    I work for a small company as many people do, however, to me the workaround may be to use Virtual PC or VMWare.

    Right now, I keep a Virtual WinXP Instance available on my Windows Vista machine as there are still some programs that simply do not work with Vista.


  14.   Dan Says:

    I have a hard time believing Microsoft would be this short sighted. I have worked at several SMBs and everyone used a MMC with adminpak and Exchange tools loaded on it to administer their network. If this is a taste of what Microsoft has to offer I am not looking forward to the release of 2008. They seem to have forgotten the basics and are sucking up to the big companies. I am not a Linux fan, but I feel like I am being pushed into it.


  15.   Dmitry Sotnikov Says:

    Some of that (e.g. Exchange and AD management) could be done from Vista by using PowerGUI as a UI console and PowerShell as the command-line but I agree that this might pose some learning curve and might not have feature-parity with what everyone is using today.



  16.   JeffG Says:

    I just installed the Adminpak from W2K3 R2 without having to customize anything. All the tools I”ve tested are working fine. Am I missing something?


  17.   BrianM Says:

    Hi Jeff,
    It seems to work for some an not for some. Take a look at the first link my post and it goes over the method for installing the AdminPak but again there is no native AdminPak for Vista as there was for XP and below.


  18.   gogotop Says:

    Not all users of the AdminPak are Domain Admins. Remote admin tools are the best thing for delegated admins, like the helpdesk, or OU admins – and it keeps them off the servers where they don”t need any access. Setting up Terminal Services for these types of admins is just plain stupid – what massive overhead. Is MS going to pay for all those TS licenses, ”cause as much as they”d like us to move to that model I”d like not to pay for something they screwed up.
    I don”t buy the company size thing either – how you decide to secure something is your choice, not a tool availability issue. There are dozens of tools that will let me modify MS admin stuff because of my rights, not because the tool I use. Seems like MS not providing these tools on Vista will just make people look for other tools rather then change their admin model. MS is their own worst enemy in this case.
    Fix Vista not the administration model.


  19.   Jonathan Merrill Says:

    You look at everything Microsoft has done since Windows 2003. Forgetting the basics is an understatement.

    Someone put them on a strange direction to not make anything simplier or anyone”s life easier. Moving more and more functionality away from the GUI and pushing it to the command line is an example. Discontinuing programs in favor of RDP sessions. Simplicity in approach and execution all but eliminated.

    It”s a mess. But, I am not surprised at Microsoft”s actions. I somtimes feel Microsoft has betrayed their own vision in favor of introducing complexity as a way to hook us into support contracts and locking us into their .NET framework.

    I personally don”t want web integration at the desktop. I”d settle for a PC that works and runs apps well. I pay for speed, I”d like to see some.

    Vista, in my opinion, is stepping in the wrong direction.

    A concerned disappointed citizen,



  20.   Sly Says:

    Guys, download Microsoft Virtual PC 2007 for free, install it on your Vista machine, create a new Windows XP virtual machine and install all your Admin Tools on it.

    Been doing this since the release of Vista in Nov 06 and it works great for me.

    Power to The Virtual World!


  21.   JerryD Says:

    If Microsoft doesn”t release an “official” version of Adminpak for Vista and they say it”s for “security” reasons and that you should be performing these tasks through Terminal Server, I don”t buy it for a second!

    The reason they want you to use TS is because you now need to PAY $$$ for it!


  22.   weightless Says:

    It isn”t just Vista – it is the whole dang shooting match. My company is tight with the training bucks so I had to buy a computer strong enough to run the newest programs. I hate to break it to you all, but the way they hid or removed options from Office 2007 that were easily accessible in 2003, be very afraid if GM and Ford follow this business model – the ignition will be in the glove box and the headlight dimmer switch will be in the trunk. Someone (lots of someones) are clearly asleep at the switch.


  23.   DB Says:

    Could this be a “first steps” subtle approach to not only “Software As a Service”, but “ADMIN As a Service”? It already exists…this may be like the telecoms now trying to control VoiP because of the loss of big bucks in the area of long distance charges.

    This has the sound of the story of the frog in the pot of water trick…just change things slowly…

    If you make it harder to access network and local clients and servers compared to the norm…which the obvious just points to remote admin as the tool (the path is being redirected)…web access to servers and client desktops is nothing new…needing security is nothing new…not being secure is nothing new…

    So what am I pointing to…theres good and bad in this…and I don”t think MS made a mistake in Vista…this is deliberate…and the way to see it is to take all of the changes being made and paint he picture…(and the pressures from MS and the government…which may include Barnes-Oxley and HPPIA rules etc.)…

    This is about access to IMAGE…and who will control it…whether that is visual or audible…

    Some of us use our computers for personal joy which may include buying and selling and of course communication …the corporate world uses them for making $$$$ which includes most of the afore mentioned…both areas of use are changing as the control over both changes…

    ADMIN changes are in effect also…and as we know…alot of the former ways of implementing networks…large or small…could be called prehistoric…though the major changes have only been made in the last few years…

    ADMINs are losing control and jobs…and they are also taking on more clients per individual ADMIN than was possible say 5 years ago…

    I wonder how many of the 8,000 Dell employees who are to be laid off fall into the above category…(ADMIN)…and are no longer needed because “control” has changed…

    I”m with the rest of you…I don”t like it either…the rules are changing…without our control or input…that is what scares me…most of you said this change doesn”t make sense…it does make sense…to those who made the changes…

    Stay sober!


  24.   george gibat Says:

    most of you over look the best solution, dump M$ and install Linux, I work for a consulting company that has converted several fortune 1000 companies to after the conversion were more stable and cut there licensing fees to 1/3 of what they were with Microsnot


  25.   Brian W. McCann Says:

    And just how many of those have switched back? Linux always seems attractive at first but the support cost is up there. There just isn”t enough people out there with the knowledge to truly support it. To me that is the biggest issue with Linux, since there is no single version or leading vendor, no one knows how to get trained. This IMO is where Microsoft has won, they have a great learning division and capitalize on it big time. I”m not saying Microsoft is the only solution out there but let me know how people (true numbers) are going to get up to speed on supporting it? Without it Linux will never take a chunk of Microsoft”s market share.


  26.   pm Says:

    and what if i am running server core 2008. The recomenede way of doing admin for that is to use remote UI tools – like adminpak


  27.   Steven Teiger Says:

    FYI on Small Business Server you have an excellent tool called RWW (Remote Web Workplace) which lets you Remote into any desktop or server in your LAN in a secure manner. Presumably in the LH (2008) Server era there are other tools also for remote administration.


  28.   AndyC Says:

    Wow. Just wow. What an amazingly short sighted approach.


  29.   AnAdmin Says:

    Wow, has anyone thought of the irony here? Microsoft makes a new OS that cannot administer it”s own network operating system. It seems to me guys that this is the beginning of a louder call to look at alternatives to microsoft. Why is it that admins feel they need some kind of central authority to learn something or to guide something? Sounds like communism to me. Take it upon yourselves to get the training and experience in something other than Microsoft. I see the light and will need to make the choice myself as well. Either do the work and get away from Microsoft on your own or stick it out with the now slowly loosing Microsoft enterprise. I work for a 40000+ employee company and will not convert to Vista until the jack boot thugs at microsoft decide to pull support and patches. Hopefully by then we will decide that Microsoft is not the way of the future. Yes, the admin pack is this important. No large company is going to use TS to admin their network!!! Thats rediculous.


  30.   tda Says:

    Sounds like a decision from the MS “How do we get more admins mad at us?” department of PR.


  31.   Jonathan Cuyno Says:

    I have been working with small businesses for the last 20 years. I also manage my small business and network. I truly understand that the small business is getting screwed here. Microsoft is making it harder and harder to figure out how to manage your own system. They hide options to make your computer faster. They change the rules and force programmers to change for their benefit. They force us to stop using DOS, Win95, Win98 and soon XP when all those OS”s could still work fine for many applications. Now they want us to manage computers their way. If you wnat free way of accessing your server without paying for TS License then use Atleast you won”t have to pay Microsoft and best of all it”s free!


  32.   Another SysAdmin Says:

    I think MS finally got the word that not having an Admin Pak (or whatever they want to call it) is unacceptable. I”ve heard that there will be one available after all and that it will have dependencies on Vista SP1 (which I hear is in testing now).

    BTW, Hyena is a great tool but it”s far from free.


  33.   Lusid Says:

    Well, not having an admin pak and exchange tools stopped our vista deployment cold. If we can”t use it in IT, we can”t support a company wide deployment. Period, end of story.


  34.   Dave D Says:

    I had trouble installing the AdminPak on Vista also.
    What I did was to start a ”Command Prompt” with ”run as Administrator” then mapped a drive to a Win2k3 DC that has SP2 and SR2 to the admin$ share
    (net use x: dcnameadmin$system32)
    then run adminpak.msi from the prompt, Active Directory Users and Computers, sites and Services Domains and trust all works fine.


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