Craig’s Hyper-V free primer (part 1 of 3)

Every time I set up another hyper-v free (core) box, I wind up pulling out my hair getting everything working.  For me, the biggest problem is administrating the box.

I have three primary environments and a number of different clients I use to admin Hyper-V.

WORK:  Hyper-V is still in testing at work as we run our production servers on VMWare ESXi 5.1. As such, it lives in our IT Lab.  I use a Windows 7 box for my lab desktop. We have only two Windows 8 licenses at work currently, a real box and a VM on ESXi.

HOME: My lab environment at home is more elaborate, I run two test boxes, running ESXi 5.1 and Hyper-V Core 2012 respectively. I have numerous notebook’s, tablets and desktops at home, running both 7 and 8, and even a Mac, but we don’t like to turn it on.

To Microsoft’s credit, they have made administrating Hyper-V a breeze from Windows 8.  So easy in fact, that you barely need to do a thing to get it to work.  However getting Win7 to work is a different story. Hopefully this guide will help out.

[On my recent builds, I have been using Probus’s ProHVM or 5nine Manager for Hyper-V. Both products allow full managment of Hyper-V. These solutions do not require MS’s RSAT to be installed. Skip the next step if you do not want RSAT.]


First, download and install Microsoft’s Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT)

rsat feature


Then enable the Hyper-V Tools Windows Feature by going to your Control Panel, select Programs and Features and choose the Windows Features option on the side bar.

In the Windows Features window scroll down to the (new) ‘Remote Server Administration Tools’ section and expand the section. Expand the ‘Role Administration Tools’  subsection and (finally) select Hyper-V Tools.

I have actually seen MS refer to this process as ‘intuitive’.





I highly recommend adding the Hyper-V server to your hosts:

Open Notepad as Administrator and add your Hyper-V server to your hosts file (C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts for Windows 7/Vista/XP).

That is it for client modifications.  For Windows 8, just add the server to your hosts file.  RSAT is already installed on Win8 (pro, I don’t have a plain 8 to check). I still prefer 5nine’s manager over MS’s, and would go with it even if it meant installing additional software. Now for host modifications.

On the Hyper-V server, run the following commands:





At this point, you can Remote Desktop into the box.  Getting Hyper-V Manager working requires a few more steps.  For now, I’m going with 5nine and getting some work done.

I’ll detail getting Microsoft’s own programs (namely Hyper-V Manager and Win7) to work together in part 2 of this series, and I’ll go over some very nice tools for Hyper-V free in part 3.

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