Installing & Configuring Your Microsoft Server 2012 R2:

“A Step by Step Booklet, So You Can Get Your Server On Track, Not Your Files All Jacked.” (An Interpolation of Biggie’s 10-Commandments via JS)

This post will discuss the necessary steps prior to installing, implementing and managing the Microsoft Server 2012 R2 software in any environment. For the IT novice interested in pursuing a career as either a junior network admin or assistant system administrator, I’ve laid out the basic set-up process and put together a blog-torial of my findings.

Before you start an installation of Windows Server 2012 R2, you should perform the following steps.​ Identify what type of install you’re going to perform. Either a Clean, Upgrade or Migration installation. (For clarity purposes the definitions are provided below).

  • A clean installation requires deleting the previous operating system.
  • An upgrade means moving from your existing operating system to Windows Server 2012 R2, while staying on the same hardware. ​
  • A migration means moving from your existing operating system to Windows Server 2012 R2 by transferring to a different set of hardware. ​

Now that we’ve decided the type of install, let’s proceed.

  1. Review the system requirements and review pre-installation documentation.
  2. ​Enter the product key: (the product key identifies which edition you will be installing​).
  3. Select which OS editing tool you would prefer to use to configure the server: (Server Core or Server with a GUI) If installing remotely, Server Core is the default option.
  4. Accept License Terms & Agreements.
  5. Choose Type of Install as discussed above (Upgrade or Custom).

6. Windows Setup Dialog Box: Here you can configure how the drive where you are making the install will be partitioned. You can adjust the server size, and remember that each gigabyte is equivalent to 1024 bytes each. If you are booting from a SAN (Storage Area Network), you should have the necessary info to complete this process efficiently. If you haven’t the slightest clue, no worries, the Windows Setup will perform this task automatically and allocate the space for you by default. Just hit NEXT.

Note: From a trouble shooting perspective while in the Windows Setup Dialog Box, if the driver does not load, you can choose the “Load driver” option and you will be set.

The install process will now begin. Windows files will be copied over, preparing for installation. Features and Updates will also be installed at this time. The service will reboot once the process is complete. Windows will detect the device drivers and conduct some performance test on the server. Once complete you will be asked to administer a password for the “Administrator”.

7. Choose a password that meets the complexity requirement set by the administrator for your network or group and type it twice. Click “Finish” to restart Windows Server 2012. You are required to login into Windows with the default administrator

8. Now it’s time to configure. Login with your password.

9. Go To Start Menu and type “cmd” or “command” in the search box or right click on Start and select the “command prompt” option.

Command Prompt Box

10. Don’t Panic. This is nothing more than a command prompt box and here you can install the tools necessary to best configure your server. Let’s start with the computer name and network settings. Type in command: sconfig and the following screen with information will appear. Where it says enter number to select an option, choose which parameter you would like to append. In this case we want to name this puppy, so we’re going with selection number 2) Computer Name.

11. When naming your device or domain controller, you should choose a name that focuses on the location of the device and the service that it will need to provide. For example NYDC2, which stands for New York Domain Controller2. It’s just good practice to stay away from personal or pet names, especially in a business environment.

12. Once you’ve successfully named your computer, you can select which options you would like to configure going forward. If you’re a Junior Network Administrator, the Senior Network Admin will give you a list of the parameters you need to set, modify or amend. Congratulations, you’ve just installed and configured Microsoft Server 2012 R2 on your own… Keep Up The Good Work… Ready-Tech.. GO!!

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