Managing Older Versions of Windows with Windows Server “8” Beta Tools (and vice versa)

Managing Older Versions of Windows with Windows Server “8” Beta Tools (and vice versa)

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windows8logo[UPDATE:  The RC release of WMF 3.0 is now avaialble for use with Windows Server 2012 RC.  You can download WMF 3.0 RC from http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=29939]

Over the last few weeks while travelling across Canada for the Private Cloud Launch Tour, as well as the Windows Server 2012 Install Camps, I have often been asked whether or not it is possible to use Server Manager in Windows Server “8” Beta to manage Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 server machines, or if there is a way to install the Windows Server “8” Beta management tools in Windows 7 or Windows Vista.  The answer to both questions in yes, but there are a few “gotchas” to be aware of.

Getting the WMF 3.0 Beta Bits

The first step in the process is to download the beta of Windows Management Framework 3.0 (WMF 3.0).  The WMF 3.0 Beta package contains pre-release versions of:

  • Windows PowerShell 3.0
  • Windows Remote Management (WinRM) 3.0
  • Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI)
  • Management OData IIS Extensions
  • Server Manager CIM Provider

The download consists of multiple files, so you should download the ones that apply to your operating system and desired management option(s) as indicated in the following table:

WMF 3.0 Beta Package File OS to install on Purpose

Windows6.1-KB2506143-x86.msu

Windows 7 SP1 Client (x86)

Use to manage Windows Server “8” Beta computers from Windows 7 32-bit

Windows6.1-KB2506143-x64.msu

Windows 7 SP1 Client (amd64), Windows 2008 R2 SP1

  • Use to manage Windows Server “8” Beta computers from Windows 7 64-bit
  • Install on Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 computers to be able to manage them from Windows Server “8” Beta

Windows6.0-KB2506146-x86.msu

Windows 2008 SP2 (x86)

Install on Windows Server 2008 SP2 32-bit computers to be able to manage them from Windows Server “8” Beta

Windows6.0-e KB2506146-x64.msu

Windows 2008 SP2 (amd64)

Install on Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit computers to be able to manage them from Windows Server “8” Beta

WMF3 0 Beta Release Notes.docx N/A

Should be read before installing WMF 3.0 Beta on any operating system.

AddMSFT_ExtendedError.zip Windows 2008 SP2
Windows 2008 R2 SP1

PowerShell 3.0 Script to fix issues running GPResult /r and rsop.msc  after installing WMF 3.0 Beta

 

Adding Required Prerequisites

Before installing the WMF 3.0 Beta bits, you need to ensure that you have the pre-requisite components on the target machines.  These include:

  • .NET Framework 4.0 which can be downloaded from http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=212547.
  • If you plan to run the tools from Windows 7, make sure you have installed Service Pack 1 on the Windows 7 computer, which you can do through Windows Update or by going to  http://windows.microsoft.com/installwindows7sp1.
  • If you want to use the PowerShell Integrated Scripting Environment or ISE, you should install it on the target Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 computer before installing WMF 3.0 Beta.  You can do this in Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 by using the Add Features wizard.

 

OK, Done all That and Installed the WMF 3.0 Beta Bits, but I Still Get an Error!!??

The release notes for WMF 3.0  Beta are quite good (so make sure to read them and follow all the applicable instructions indicated in the document!!), but a couple of key items get buried within the document or don’t actually appear there that can cause you to have issues, like I did.  The problem I ran across was the error Not accessible – Verify earlier versions of Windows run the Management WTR package when adding a Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 computer to Server Manager in Windows Server “8” Beta, as seen here:

Turns out, that it is an easy problem to fix, but it does require that you run a few PowerShell commands to get things going.  The process is as follows:

  • Right-click on the PowerShell icon on the target computer (i.e. the one you want to manage) and select Run as Administrator
  • In the PowerShell Window, issue the command  Set-ExecutionPolicy –ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned
  • In the PowerShell Window, issue the command Configure-SMRemoting.ps1 -force -enable

Remember to respond to run the commands when prompted, and the results should look similar to the following:

At this point you should be good to go. As you add Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 servers to Server Manager in Windows Server “8” Beta, their roles will automatically show.

DamirB-BlogSignature

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