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How-to: Setup Server 2012 R2

This how-to illustrates how to set up a clean install of Windows Server 2012 R2 with basic roles and features.

A clean installation means that the operating system will be put onto a computer that does not have an instalation present, or one that you want to keep.


For this installation you will need a system that meets the following requirements

Hardware Minimum Recommended Maximum
CPU 1.4 GHz x64 2 GHz x64 Processor
RAM 512 MB 2 Gb or more 32 GB for standard, 4TB for Data Center
Storage 32 GB 40 GB plus additional space for applications or data, 10 GB Server Core Installation

Server 2012 R2 Installation media, such as .iso burned to a CD/DVD or on thumbdrive, is required.

Screenshots of this installation are taken from a installation to a Virtual Machine running in Microsoft Hyper-V Application.

Installation Settings

Start by inserting the Installation media and booting the system.

Language, Time & currency, Keyboard

The first screen present is the Windows Setup. Here you will choose:

On the next screen

The Setup will start to install on the system.

Product Key

To activate the software you are prompted to enter the product key.

Select the operating system you want to install

For this demonstration choose

License terms

Installation type

Here you can choose to upgrade from an existing installation or Custom Installation.

Where do you want to install Windows

Here you can choose to format and partition the drive. For this tutorial , no partitioning of the drive is needed.

Installing Windows

The installation process starts.

The system will automatically restart

Server Settings

Upon restart you are prompted to create an administrator password

The settings will be finalized and you will come to the login page for the server.

Login as the Administrator


Upon the first login windows will ask you if you want to find find Pc’s PC’s Devices and content on this network Automatically.

The Server Manager program will open automatically.

Server 20012 is now up and running, however not doing very much.

Next a static IP address will be assigned, roles and features installed and the system will be promoted to a domain controller.

Assign Static IPv4 Address

A Static IPv4 Address is required so that the server can see other network devices and services. To assign a static ip

To configure the Server's NIC;

In the Ethernet properties:

Internet Protocol Version 4 Properties

Here we set the static IP address, subnet mask, default gateway and prefered DNS

To test that the static route and DNS are working you can ping an IP address.

Renaming the Server

Every windows computer should have a unique computer name to identify it on the network.

To change the name of the computer, in Server Manager and on Local Server click on the Computer name within the Properties Window:

System Properties

In the System Properties window

For the changes to take place, the system will need to restart.

Promote to Domain Controller

When the system comes back online , the next step is to install the directory services role and promote the system to a domain controller.

In server manager , Local Server

Add Roles and Features Wizard

This wizard will walk you through the steps needed to add roles and feature to your system.

You will need to make sure of the following:

Select Installation type

You can choose between installing roles and features on a running physical computer or virtual machine , or an offline Virtual hard disk.

Select Destination Server

This page shows the available servers to which roles and features can be installed to.

Select Server Roles

Select one or more roles to install on the selected server

Select Features

Select one or more features to install on the selected server

At this time no additional features are needed.

Active Directory Domain Services

This screen gives a brief description of Active Directory Domain Services(AD DS)

Confirm installation selections

This window confirms what roles and features are to be installed.

Installation progress

The installation process will begin , when completed, click "Close".

The roles are now installed. Next , the Domain controller is promoted.

Promote Server to a Domain Controller

In the server manager Dashboard , a yellow warning sign will appear next to the flag. This is to let you know that post deployment configuration is needed.

Click on the Flag and Click on "Promote this server to a domain controller to start the Wizard

Active Directory Domain Services Configuration Wizard

Deployment configuration
Select the Deployment operation

Since this is the first domain controller

Domain Controller Options

Set the function levels of the new forest

DNS Option Screen

On the DNS options screen, ignore the warning about the delegation and click Next

Additional options

On the Additional options page, make sure that the name of your domain is listed as the NetBios domain name,



On the Paths screen, defaults should be fine but if you so desired you could change them to another local harddisk or partition.

Review Options

Prerequisites Check

The server will now check to make sure all the prerequisites for the domain controller is satisfied, there will be some warnings, but that should be fine

Once the install completes the server will reboot

Once rebooted you will sign into your new domain