Menu

Virtual Geek

Tales from real IT system administrators world and non-production environment

HOW TO INSTALL WINDOWS NANO SERVER ON VMWARE WORKSTATION AND V2V CONVERTER

December 26, 2016 07:15PM

New Microsoft Windows Nano server 2016 provides and offers many new benefits over traditional windows server operating system. It is very cost effective to run nano server Amount of resources required to run nano server is very low. also due to its striped down GUI architect (no GUI layer at all) and low reduced OS footprint. Saves lots of cost hardware and energy required. Fewer reboots required, Due to reduced operating system footprint less patches are required and as so few reboots. It boots faster than earlier windows OS, low disk size required, increased security and many more other new features.

CONFIGURING AND MANAGING MICROSOFT WINDOWS NANO SERVER

Installing Nano server has different process than traditional one and first need to create VHD image from the Windows Server 2016 OS ISO image. I have downloaded evaluation Windows Server 2016 OS ISO from www.microsoft.com and mounted it on my desktop, I require NanoServer folder from the CD/DVD. I have copied it on my C:\Temp drive. All the required Nano WIM image and scripts are available in the folder.

1 copy nanoserver folder and Create microsoft windows 2016 server nano vhd image for vmware workstation

Open windows Powershell as administrator. First 2 commands cd and dir are to view the contents in the folder. Import the powershell nanoserver module with below command.

Import-Module .\nanoserver\nanoserverImageGenerator\nanoServerImageGenerator.psm1

Once powershell module is imported there are 3 new commands available to create/modify nano image, Edit-NanoserverImage, Get-NanoServerPackage, New-NanoServerImage. 

I will be using nanoserver.wim to create images under nanoserver folder and using single New-NanoServerImage cmdlet to genrate nano vhd image.

2 powershell as a administrator, create windows server 2016 nano server image, nano server image generator, nanoserverimagegenerator powershell module, import-module nano server image nanoserver.wim

New-NanoServerImage -MediaPath H:\ `
          -BasePath C:\Temp\NanoServer\Base `
          -Targetpath C:\Temp\NanoServer\Nano.vhd `
          -ComputerName NanoServer01 `
          -Package 'Microsoft-Nanoserver-Compute-Package', 'Microsoft-NanoServer-OEM-Drivers-Package', 'Microsoft-NanoServer-Storage-Package', `
          -DeploymentType Host `
          -Edition DataCenter `
          -AdministratorPassword (ConvertTo-SecureString -String 'Computer@1' -AsPlainText -Force)
3 powershell create windows 2016 nano server image, nano server image generator, nanoserverimagegenerator module, import-module nano server nanoserver.wim new-nanoserverimage, basepath, targetpath, packages

New-NanoServerImage is used to to create image and below are the parameters breakdown. Once executed you can see the status progress bar on the top.
-MediaPath: is ISO cd/dvd path of windows 2016 server, It requires sources folder from the mounted ISO.
-BasePath: Here all the wim files and other required files are copied, it will be writable local drive path.
-Targetpath: This is a folder location where new nano VHD file is generated and created.
-ComputerName: This will be the nano server hostname, and assigned while creation image (With additional parameters it is also possible to provide IP address).
-Package: Currently I am installing only Storage and HyperV packages. All the packages can be found under nanoserver\packages folder, also I have mentioned all the available packages on the ISO as after this paragraph.
-DeploymentType: There are 2 options here Host and Guest, Host is used for Bare metal and Guest is used for VM image, As I am planning for HyperV as VM. I am selecting Host.
-Edition: This is self explanatory and selecting datacenter edition.
-AdministratorPassword: it should be encrypted using command (ConvertTo-SecureString -String 'Password' -AsPlainText -Force).

Below are the packages list can be used to install and found under packages folder.
Microsoft-NanoServer-BootFromWim-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-Compute-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-Containers-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-DCB-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-Defender-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-DNS-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-DSC-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-FailoverCluster-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-Guest-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-Host-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-IIS-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-NPDS-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-OEM-Drivers-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-SCVMM-Compute-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-SCVMM-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-SecureStartup-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-ShieldedVM-Package
Microsoft-NanoServer-Storage-Package

4 powershell create windows 2016 nano server logs vhd, nano server image generator, nanoserverimagegenerator module, import-module nano server nanoserver.wim new-nanoserverimage, basepath, targetpath, packages

On the Target path new VHD file is created, As I am using VMware workstation, and this VHD cannot be used with it, I will need it to be converted to VMDK file format first. for this there is a free tool available startwind V2V (virtual to virtual) converter on http://www.starwindsoftware.com/converter.

5 starwind v2v converter, vhd to vmdk converter, vmdk to vhd converter, windows server nano server, powershell nano image creation generation

Registration is required before downloading V2V (virtual to virtual) converter software, it send the download url on registration email id for virtual to virtual (V2V) converter software, Once downloaded, setup it and execute to start wizard, choose the source image location as local file, in my case there is a VHD file on my local folder location c:\temp\nanoserver.

6 starwind v2v converter, vhd to vmdk converter, vmdk to vhd converter, windows server nano server, powershell nano image creation generation. nanoserverimage

Select the newly created Nano.VHD, check the size it is only 4 GB (Also can be installed on Pen drives). On the next screen select the destination desired image format you want to convert to, VMware Esx server image, This format file is VMware server virtual disk image (VMDK), and it is thick disk, Disk space for this image is allocated at the creation time and does not change over time, click next.

7 starwind v2v converter, vhd to vmdk vmdk to vhd converter, windows server nano server, powershell nano image creation generation. nanoserverimage, esxi server image converter, windows server 2016 nano server image

I am keeping VMDK options default, click next to select the file name and location of the new nano VMDK. make sure you have enough space on the disk, note down it will be thick disk and it is only 4 GB os virtual disk in size.

8 powershell create windows server 2016 iso nano server image for vmware esxi, workstation, v2v contersion nanoserverimage.wim, nano wim

It will take 1 or 2 minutes to convert file from vhd to vmdk. Once everything is successful, new disk is created and it is ready to attach in the new VM.

9 powershell v2v free vhd to vmdk converter free, windows server nano image generator using wim, powershell command as administrator

I have already written past article on creating VMs on VMware Workstation, PART 7 : CREATING NESTED VMWARE ESXI SERVER VM IN HOME LAB ON VMWARE WORKSTATION, Use the same article to deploy new Virtual machine, except In the wizard while selecting a disk, choose option Use an existing virtual disk.

10 Install and create Powershell windows server 2016 nano image on vmware workstation use existing virtual disk vmdk, previously configured disk, Powershell as administrator, free tools vhd to vmdk vice versa

While browsing vmdk in the folder, select the nano.vmdk, This is a descriptor file and only around 1 KB in size and actual data resides on another disk nano-flat vmdk. 

11 VMware Workstation add select an existing disk converted v2v vhd, windows server 2016 nano vmdk image, iso

Convert the existing vmdk virtual disk to newer format if you require, once converted vmdk it will be unusable with older version of VMware Workstation.

12 VMware Workstation add select an existing disk converted v2v vhd, windows server 2016 nano vmdk image, convert disk, add existing disk, conversion virtual disk workstation 12 New vm virtual machine

Once VM is completed with mapping existing VMDK disk, Power it on, and provide administrator as user name and password is the same one mentioned while creating nano image using PowerShell. It looks something similar to Esxi login screen and further configuration is also somewhat same like esxi.

13 vmware workstation 12 add windws 2016 nano server converted vhd to vmdk image virtual machine vm nano server login username and password

It opens nano server recovery console. Go to networking and hit enter to configure IP address (This step is possible while nano image creation as well). I will be configuring nano and coming up with further steps in next article.

14 vmware workstation 12 add windws 2016 nano server converted vhd to vmdk image virtual machine vm nano server, login username and password nano server recovery console winrm networking, firewall rules microsoft windows server 2016 nanoserver datacenter

Go Back

I don't know how you got your printscreens but the New-NanoServerImage is Package without the S at the end.

Your command will fail.

New-NanoServerImage : A parameter cannot be found that matches parameter name 'Packages'.
At line:5 char:11
+ -Packages 'Microsoft-Nanoserver-Compute-Package', 'Microsof ...
+ ~~~~~~~~~
+ CategoryInfo : InvalidArgument: (:) [New-NanoServerImage], ParameterBindingExcepti
on
+ FullyQualifiedErrorId : NamedParameterNotFound,New-NanoServerImage

Thanks, for pointing it out, Although it is a old post, but I remembered I modified actual New-NanoServerImage module for some expermental purpose. And these screenshots are result of same,

I will edit this article soon, Thanks again.



Comment