Archive for Server Core

After the initial install of Server Core the “Wow” factor ends fairly soon. The main reason for this is because the server is really not doing much. Like any server if you want to start using a feature of it you have to install it…Server Core is no different. At the present time (it may change in the future) Server Core can be configured to support the following server roles:

  • DHCP
  • File Server
  • DNS
  • Active Directory

Server Core uses the Windows Optional Component Setup (OCSETUP) to install server roles and optional features. This blog is only intended to show you how to install the service NOT to configure it.
Installing Server Roles:
Installing the DHCP server role:
Type the following from the command prompt:
start /w ocsetup DHCPServerCore
Installing the File Server role:
Type the following from the command prompt:
For File Replication service, type:
start /w ocsetup FRS-Infrastructure
For Distributed File System service, type:
start /w ocsetup DFSN-Server
For Distributed File System Replication, type:
start /w ocsetup DFSR-Infrastructure-ServerEdition
For Network File System, type:
start /w ocsetup ServerForNFS-Base
Then type:
start /w ocsetup ClientForNFS-Base
For Single Instance Store, type:
start /w ocsetup SIS
Installing the DNS server role:
Type the following from the command prompt:
start /w ocsetup DNS-Server-Core-Role
Installing the Active Directory server role:
Active Directory has to be installed by using an Unattended Answer file. This is because it requires certain settings to be set up during the install.
Type the following from the command prompt:
Dcpromo /unattend:Unattendfile
Installing Optional Features:
Server Core also supports optional features that are not considered roles. Some of these roles require special hardware such as the Clustering optional feature. It will be interesting to see how many optional features finds their way into Server Core.
Server Core supports the following optional features:

  • Microsoft Failover Cluster
  • Network Load Balancing
  • Subsystem for UNIX-based applications
  • Backup
  • Multipath IO
  • Removable Storage Management
  • Bitlocker Drive Encryption
  • Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP)
  • WINS

To install an optional feature


Type the following from the command prompt:

  • start /w ocsetup featurename
  • Where featurename is the name of a feature from the following list:
    • Failover Cluster: FailoverCluster-Core
    • Network Load Balancing: NetworkLoadBalancingHeadlessServer
    • Subsystem for UNIX-bases applications: SUA
    • Multipath IO: Microsoft-Windows-MultipathIO
    • Removable Storage Management: Microsoft-Windows-RemovableStorageManagementCore
    • Bitlocker Drive Encryption: BitLocker
    • Backup: WindowsServerBackup
    • Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP): SNMP-SC

Just because you”re running Server Core doesn”t mean you can get around Activation. No more going to the Start Menu -> Programs option. In Server Core you can Activate the server in two ways, one locally and the other remotely. Both ways use the Software Licensing Management Tool (Slmgr.vbs)

Local Method:

At the command prompt type: Slmgr.vbs –ato

Remote Method:

Cscript windowssystem32slmgr.vbsServerName UserName password:-ato

You”ve installed Server Core and think it”s time to join that new server to your domain. Since you can”t right click on My Computer any more you”ll have to learn how to do it the Server Core way.

  • From the command prompt type the following with:

    netdom join ComputerName /domain:DomainName /userd:UserName /passwordd:*

A couple things to note here:

  • Depending on how you have configured your DNS settings you may have to put the FQDN in for the DomainName

  • Yes, /passwordd:* needs to have that second d at the end of it.

It may seem like an easy task but have you thought about how you”re going to reset your password on a server running Longhorn”s Server Core? Right after you install Server Core you are prompted to log on. It is a bit confusing since the user that shows up is called “Other”. Once you click (yes the mouse is still there) on that user (which is really the local Administrator) you enter a blank password. One of the first things you should be thinking about is “How the hell do I change that password?”

I”ve found two ways to change the password.

  • The first method is to press CTRL+ALT+DEL and then select the Change a password… option. But wait a minute…this is Server Core and we are supposed to be using the command prompt for all this.
  • Option number two is to enter: net user administrator * at the command prompt. You will then be prompted to enter your new password. Don”t worry it won”t show up as you type it!