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Remotely Installing Windows Server 2008

Posted on 2008-10-25
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Last Modified: 2008-11-27
Hi,

I'm currently in the process of upgrading some servers to Windows Server 2008. As of right now, you could say the only remote software that I'm familiar with is LogMeIn and RADMIN.

The problem is that I'm trying to upgrade a Windows Server 2003 system to 2008, and that I'm trying to do it remotely. I can get as far as starting the installation process, but once it reboots, none of my remote software works (needs to be reinstalled), meaning I have no access to the system until I can physically touch it.

This poses a problem for me as all of the upgrades are done at night, and I don't like having the server down until the next morning.

Currently, I'm looking into using "vlite" to create an unattended setup disc, but I'm not sure how well that will work. I also know there's a GUI for something like Windows Automated Installation, but I have yet to find any good tutorials or reviews on using this with Server 2008.

If somebody could point me to some remote software that works after the reboot (this would be best), or a way to slipstream remote software into an installation or a good tutorial for creating one, that'd be great.

Thanks.
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Question by:happytang
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by:
Henrik Johansson earned 168 total points
ID: 22807940
Enable Microsoft-Windows-TerminalServices-RDP-WinStationExtensions
 when doing an unattended installation
See link for samples: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc732280.aspx

Suggestions for configured options in answer file for remote installations: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc749227.aspx
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Assisted Solution

by:andrew_aj1
andrew_aj1 earned 166 total points
ID: 22808224
You might want to check if these servers have a remote management card such as Dell's DRAC or HP's Integrated Lights-Out. These management cards will allow you to access everything from the bios to logging into windows remotely.
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dell_DRAC
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HP_Integrated_Lights-Out
 
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Expert Comment

by:Netman66
ID: 22809251
iLO and DRAC require Advanced Licensing to connect to the console session of the server.

The remote admin cards are the preferred method as you can control all the low-level functions of the server as if you were there.

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Author Comment

by:happytang
ID: 22822879
Regarding the unattended installation.

Is the only way to use Windows AIK?
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by:Netman66
Netman66 earned 166 total points
ID: 22827917
No.  You can use Setup Manager to create an unattended.txt file that would be used by setup to install the OS.

You can also create an answer file for running DCPROMO too.

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