How to deploy Nano Server on Physical – Part 2

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Optimized for private cloud infrastructures and datacenters, Nano Server is minimalistic, yet super-efficient, OS for services such as Hyper-V and Hyper-V cluster. Learn how you can easily deploy Nano Server and unlock its power!

In part 1 of the Nano Server Deployment series, we've created a new nano server image.

We can now use the generated VHDX image for booting on physical computers. There are several ways to do this. We can use, for example, System Center 2012/2012 R2/2016 – Virtual Machine Manager for bare metal deployment, or we can use the bcdboot command to configure boot from VHD/VHDX on that machine. In my case, I will use bcdboot.

For a fresh server, you should copy the VHDX with Nano Server to a USB stick. Then boot the new server with Windows Server 2016 ISO and chooseRepair your computer > Troubleshoot > Command prompt.


The next steps are to create the partition, assign a logical letter and format the boot partition where the VHDX will be stored. Diskpart can help with this.

select disk 0
create partition primary
assign letter=C
format c: /q

We will now prepare the VHDX for booting:

cd windows\system32
bcdboot f:\windows

Finally, some cleaning details:

select vdisk file=”c:\nano_srv.vhdx”
detach vdisk

The server can be rebooted now. When Nano Server starts, you should be able to login with the domain credentials.

At this stage, you should be able to ping Nano Server by name, browse shares and add it to Hyper-V Manager. In the next part, we will configure our Nano Server.

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