Windows Server Essentials 2012 R2 – Windows 10
August 6, 2015 36 Comments
I just want to focus on Windows 10 and in a little more detail. In this post we will just be looking at Windows 10 and Server 2012 R2 Essentials.
Here is the overview table from the Blog Post.
Download the Connector
We can immediately see we need to take manual steps to get Windows 10 working with Essentials R2.
The update has now been released: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3105885
Those steps are to download the client connector manually and run it, on the client, without visiting the /connect website.
For a Windows 10 x64 machine download the client here.
For x86 (32-bit) go here. (though why anyone wants 32bit is beyond me)
Needless to say i shall be focussing on the x64 bit version.
So hitting that link will download the file, now my newness to Windows 10 shows here, as i expected a popup or message to ask me if i wanted to save or run the file, so i ended up with two downloads.
Once at least one of these has downloaded, run the program.
The update should install quite quickly.
Once this is done, YOU ARE NOT FINISHED!
This only installs the connector software.We need now to actually use the connector software to join to the Essentials Server.
Go into the Start Menu (assuming it is still called that?)
Find Your new apps, and expand Windows Server Essentials, Run the Essentials Program.
It should automatically detect your server on the local LAN. If it doesn’t that may indicate an issue you should investigate before proceeding. The option to manually enter in the server address is available, however i would only use that myself if i was sure the Essentials Server was functioning correctly.
The remainder of the wizard is identical to any other client installation.
Once it has completed, we can see that the Windows 10 client appears in the Dashboard as expected.
Next we try to launch the Dashboard from the Client.
No problems here.
Client PC Backup
Next we switch our attention to Client PC backup.
Since i still had the Dashboard open on the client i launched a manual backup from there. Which completed in about 15 minutes.
And a restore..
So that all checks out, and quite right too.
Remote Web Application (Remote Web Workplace, Remote Web Access)
Now i will move on to testing the RWA. Given i have already tested this using SBS 2011 Essentials, and Server 2012 Essentials, i have no reason to expect that 2012 R2 will be any different.
Firstly the Windows 10 client appears in the RWA, and also shows as available.
But when trying to connect, i got this error.
I verified i could RDP internally to the Windows 10 Client, which rules out authentication, rdp being disabled, and firewall issues.
Leaving RDP Gateway as the culprit.
Sure enough, the alert viewer on the server confirms the same.
Running a repair of the Anywhere Access settings, sorted that out and i was able to connect.
Next test is to move the Windows 10 to an external network, check the LAN Configuration Service and RWA to an internal client.
Interestingly it looks like i had disabled the LAN Configuration Service on the Server, as it was not configured at all on the Windows 10 machine, so i will come back to that.
Logging in to an internal Client worked without any issue at all, and so did uploading files to the RWA.
Bare Metal Restore
Switching our attention back to BMR, we can see how smoothly the process runs. Again having done this already for 2011 and 2012 i expect this to be the easiest of the 3.
Of course with 2012 R2 we have the luxury of using the WDS/PXE based Client Restore environment.
Like all things though, it is not as straight forward as it should be, and i had to mess around with the WDS installation to get a Gen2 VM to boot from it. (read switching WDS from AD Integrated to Standalone)
Once that was done the restore completed successfully!
Going back to the LAN Configuration Service, i did not uninstall the connector, i just reused the program we downloaded originally and ran it again. It reinstalled the connector for me, and i was able to verify that the DNS Server address was managed successfully when moving between internal and external networks.
The last test is to rename the client PC.
Which was as simple as renaming the PC.
One other item we need to look at is the Folder Redirection GPOs setup by the Essentials Dashboard.
I have written about these several times before and how to tweak the WMI filters so that they apply to a additional OS’s, or to create an additional filter to apply to a certain OS.
The default WMI filter for Essentials 2012 R2 is this:
select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (Version >= “6.1%”) and ProductType= “1”
So that means any Client Operating system (ProductType = 1) that has a version number higher than 6.1 (Version >= 6.1%)
This should mean any version of Windows higher than Windows 7.
We see here the WMI Filtering has denied the folder redirection policy on our Windows 10 client, but applied it on our Windows 8.1 client.
I was thinking that because the major version number has changed from 6 to 10 it explained why this filter no longer works. No matter how i tried to rationalise it, i came back to the same conclusion which is, a bug in WMI or the query language, as 10 definitely is >= 6.
In fact having spent a few minutes looking at it, i think it is a bug, because on my Windows 10 machine, this query works.
select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where Version < “6.1%”
Which it should not! Because 10 is not < 6.
So for the time being at least, follow Yves suggestion in the comments below to modify your WMI Filter.
Please see below comment from Gary and link to grouppolicy.biz which explains a little more about the issue.
Microsoft have now released a KB regarding this Issue. https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3119213
I think that about covers Windows 10 and Server Essentials 2012 R2. If you think i have missed anything, please let me know!