D'Arcy from Winnipeg
Solution Architecture, Business & Entrepreneurship, Microsoft, and Adoption

Adventures with Server 2008 and Tech Ed

Sunday, June 1, 2008 5:53 AM

So yesterday was the day before leaving for Tech Ed, and so I decided that it would be the *perfect* time to finally upgrade my travel laptop to Windows Server 2008. I mean seriously, how hard could it be?!

Well...for the most part it wasn't. I actually really like having Server 2008 on my machine, except for one small issue that has become the dealbreaker...but let me just gloss over some things quickly for those thinking of doing the same thing:

- When you install Server 2008, just do Standard instead of Enterprise. Enterprise has features specific to optimizing a server. For a workstation implementation, its not needed.

- Live Messenger 8.1 is the version you want to install...no other version will work.

- Make sure to download all laptop specific drivers before you install server 2008, or have another computer at the ready. This is important because...

- I ran into a huge roadblock in that after installing Server 2008 I had no working ethernet or wireless...and the actual networking device wasn't installed either. I had an AirCard with a local provider which did work, so I was able to get internet. Unfortunately, I never did find the ethernet adaptor. Because of this, the installation has been a failure and I'll have to revert. A buddy of mine had the same issue finding drivers for his wireless/ethernet on his laptop...another buddy had no issue, so it seems to be manufacturer specific (read: whether they provide good drivers or not).

- IE runs like IE on a server...which SUCKS. You'll need to spend some time unlocking the security lockdown (I know, I know...its better for us to be safer in the long run...)

K, that's a brief overview of how it went down...I need to jet as my flight to Tech Ed leaves in just over 1.5 hours. More later...as in much later...after I put Vista back on my laptop (Vista Home Premium that it shipped with...luckily Virtual PC will actually run on Vista-HP, so I can still get Server running...sorta).



# re: Adventures with Server 2008 and Tech Ed

I had the same issue but was able to find everything eventually, using Vista drivers. You're right, though. A second computer nearby is a necessity. 6/1/2008 9:21 AM | Kyle Baley

# re: Adventures with Server 2008 and Tech Ed

Hey D,

I had no issues installing 2008 on my HP Laptop (HP AMD version) using all of the Vista drivers.

As you mentioned just make sure you have all of the drivers on a USB Key/DVD before. As well all HP laptops have a folder off the root called swupd or something like that which has all of the software and drivers just copy that to a 4gb USB key or burn to DVD. After you install 2008 copy the folder back then for all hardware that does not have drivers do a manual update and point to that folder and allow it to search for the missing drivers.

Worked for me.

- willyd
6/1/2008 2:47 PM | William

# re: Adventures with Server 2008 and Tech Ed

Did you install Windows Server 2008 x64? I'm very interested in this, but am concerned about the drivers for my laptop (Dell M6300) 7/17/2008 3:28 PM | Glenn

# re: Adventures with Server 2008 and Tech Ed

@Glenn Yes, it was Server 2008 x64. No problems, laptop works awesome under it!

As long as you have the drivers (Vista drivers seem to work fine), then I'd say give it a go with the Dell...but just make sure you have the drivers first...otherwise you get what I had to go through, which was re-install Vista HP, get the drivers, then repave with server 2008 and install them.

D 7/20/2008 12:24 PM | D'Arcy from Winnipeg

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