Deploying Windows 8 Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT)

Deploying Windows 8 Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT)

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Update: Windows 8 RSAT RTM is now online.

Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) enables IT administrators to do Windows Server management remotely. Since Windows Server 2008, RSAT has been a free download for Windows client-based operating systems. RSAT is the evolution of the Administrative Tools pack (also known as Admin Pack) that was available to manage roles on Windows Server 2003. Going forward, RSAT is always going to be released the same time as Windows client.

RSAT for Windows 8 enables IT administrators to manage roles and features that are installed on computers that are running Windows Server 2012 from a remote computer that is running Windows 8. RSAT for Windows 8 includes Server Manager, Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-ins, consoles, Windows PowerShell cmdlets and providers, and command-line tools for managing roles and features that run on Windows Server 2012. In limited cases, the tools can be used to manage roles and features that are running on Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2003. You can find a complete table of all tools and what versions of roles and features they will manage on the TechNet Wiki.

We recommend using RSAT to remotely manage your servers. One of the benefits is to use the GUI to manage servers that run the Server Core installation option of Windows Server. All tools and features in RSAT for Windows 8 can be found in Windows Server 2012. Basically, we pick the tools from Windows Server 2012 and package them to be installable on Windows 8. Users should expect minimal differences between remotely managing roles and features from another server running Windows Server 2012 and from computers running Windows 8 with RSAT installed. In Windows Server 2012, we make Server Manager a great tool to manage multiple servers remotely. For more information about Server Manager, please refer to the Introduction to Server Manager in Windows Server 2012 blog post from my colleague, Wale Martins.

Based on your feedback, we’ve changed the installation experience of RSAT for Windows 8. Instead of a two-step installation process where you ran the installer, and then manually picked and enabled tools to use, as in RSAT for Windows 7, all features and tools in RSAT for Windows 8 are installed and enabled by default, after the installer is finished running. After RSAT installation, “Server Manager” and “Administrative Tools” shortcuts are pinned on the Start screen.

All RSAT tools are found in the Administrative Tools folder. They can also be launched from the “Tools” menu in Server Manager. This can make the “Tools” menu long and difficult to use. My colleague, Kriti Jindal, has posted a blog entry on how to customize the Tools menu in Server Manager.

Please refer to the download page for RSAT for Windows 8 for more information about installing and uninstalling the tools. RSAT for Windows 8 is designed to work best when managing roles and features that are installed on computers that are running Windows Server 2012.

We love feedback. Do you have any things you’d like to see in the RSAT package going forward?


Stephen Liu
Program Manager
Windows Server 2012

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  • Hi. Mark , I have a problem and I even don't know if it is a serious problem . I have a 2008 r2 server where I am administrator . I log on like administrator and i runas administrator the  command prompt . I have found that in netsh , at dhcp command , i enter directly in dhcpclient context , which is not normal . what do you think about this? should I worry that a dhcp server is in my network and I have no idea about it or is a bug in 2008 r2? Thanks a lot for your answer .

  • So you can't install RSAT 8 on a Win 7 client....

  • >>>So you can't install RSAT 8 on a Win 7 client....


  • The link points to the RSAT Tools for Windows 8 Release Preview - is there going to be an update for Win 8 RTM?

  • >>> The link points to the RSAT Tools for Windows 8 Release Preview - is there going to be an update for Win 8 RTM?

    Yes. We are busy working on the RTM version. We expect it be online in September.

  • Not available until September? That's going to slow down IT adoption a little. :(

  • I think it's unfortunate to prevent management of Server 2012 from a Win7 workstation.  I'm not sure how this plays out in the enterprise, but as a small business customer, if I were buying a server today, this might influence me to deploy Server 2008 R2 instead of 2012.

  • I was testing out HyperV2012 and quite honestly expecting to control it from a Win7.  This is going to put a monkey wrench into those plans.

    You sure you guys can't put the ability to merely handle the Hyperv management back to a Win7 machine?

  • To DaveN: Thanks for your feedback! We will take your input into consideration in our planning.

    To Susan: Thanks for your feedback! I will pass your feedback to Hyper-V team.

  • Only install on clients running Windows 8 Pro. Do you mean Pro and Enterprise? I would imagine those Enterprise VLA customers will expect the capability to use RSAT.

  • There is a workaround to install  the Release Preview RSAT (until RTM version of RSAT), on the RTM version of Win 8 Pro or Win Enterprise.

    Look at this forum:

    "RSAT Tools for Windows 8 RTM"

  • Yikes, Win 8 available to enterprise (my environment) but I can't use RSAT yet.

    remote desktop for a while then


    good job on the OS though folks - I would have liked to see if I could get used to server admin via windows 8 straight away, but never mind.

  • One issue:

    Can you make it so RSAT can edit the "dial-in" tab of user properties?  This was not possible in windows 7, so that required that a 2003 server be left laying around accessible via RDP if we wanted to edit user dial-in IP address assignments.

    This would be required to go to a 100% core installation because there's no other way to modify this property but on the server itself, at least in a 2008 r2 / windows 7 network.

  • Hi Stephen, I had hoped the RSAT RTM would come on the 4th with Server, do you have a release date yet ?

  • As the post above states, some info on when to expect the RTM release of the tools for Windows 8 would be helpful.  Thanks!