Basic Installation and Configuration of Windows Server 2012
Illustration by John Hersey

Configuring server roles


Basic Installation and Configuration of Windows Server 2012

with Timothy Pintello

Video: Configuring server roles

Now that we've configured a basic server, we want to go ahead and Now, there are a number of different jobs or roles that you can give a server.

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Watch the Online Video Course Basic Installation and Configuration of Windows Server 2012
1h 21m Beginner Aug 14, 2014

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Get a practical introduction to setting up Windows Server 2012. Timothy Pintello breaks down this basic IT task into its core components: installation, roles and services configuration, and local storage setup. He shows you how to practice these steps with VirtualBox and gain real experience without the cost or risks associated with expensive hardware.

Learn how to choose an edition that's right for your setup, install Windows Server 2012 and the VirtualBox drivers, and then configure the services and roles on your new server. Timothy also shows how to set up local storage and manage Windows Server in one of two ways: through the command line or with the simple admin interface that ships with Windows Server.

Topics include:
  • Installing Windows Server 2012
  • Installing VirtualBox drivers
  • Configuring server roles
  • Configuring services
  • Configuring disk and file systems
  • Using alternative administration methods
Windows Server
Timothy Pintello

Configuring server roles

Now that we've configured a basic server, we want to go ahead and give the server a job. The way we give the server a job is click the add roles and features. What this does is opens up the Add Roles and Features Wizard. Go ahead and click Next in that wizard. Since we are setting up a roll, go ahead and click Next again. And finally, make sure that the correct computer is highlighted in the box here. We only have one server here, so we only have one server showing in the box.

However, if you're on a network with more than one server, it is entirely possible more than one server will show up here. So you need to make sure that you select the correct server for the job. Go ahead and click Next. Now, there are a number of different jobs or roles that you can give a server. One of the most important roles we can give a server is the Active Directory, domain services role. This is a fancy way of saying we're setting up a domain controller. This server is important because it controls access between the work stations and all the other servers on the network.

Another important server is the DHCP server. This server automatically assigns IP addresses to the work stations on the network so that you, the administrator, do not have to assign all the IPs manually. Another important server is the DNS server. This server is really important because it takes English-like names, such as basic server,, or any other computer name, and converts it to an IP address that the network can understand.

This is important because humans have a hard time remembering a lot of numbers, but we remember English-like names very easily. This server will automatically be set up when an active directory server is set up. A final server that is important is the print and documents services server. This role will allow you to control or manage all the printers on your network from a central location. This server will also allow you to scan in a document from one location and email it out to another.

Now we've looked at a few of the roles that are possible in a network, let's go ahead and assign the active directory role to this particular server. We do this by clicking inside the check box. When we click inside the check box, it brings up a list of all the features that will be added when this role is installed. We go ahead and click add features here, and now it comes back up showing that that role has been selected. Go ahead and select next. This brings us to the features screen.

In this screen, all the previous features shown in the previous screen are automatically selected. So I go ahead and select Next again. Now select Next one more time. This brings us to the final page, and here we are going to go ahead and tell the computer to restart automatically, so we don't have to do it manually. So click yes. And then now, click install. At this point, we need to wait a few minutes while the wizard does its job. Now the wizard has completed it's job, you'll notice there is a warning icon up here in the corner.

That warning icon is important because it's one more thing we have to do before this server is setup as a domain controller. Go ahead and click the warning, and you'll notice, it'll ask you to do a post deployment configuration. What we need to do is we need to promote the server to a domain controller. Something, we could do before we installed the domain controller role. So, go ahead and click the Promote this server. We can also close the previous wizard. Now we have to wait, while the promotion takes place.

You'll notice there are several different deployment operations up here, that we can do. The one we want to select, is the Add a New forest, because this is the first domain inside this network. Click on the Add a New forest radio button, and now we need to create a name for our domain. The domain name I'm choosing is Random Domain. However, you will need to use the domain name you have purchased from Ikana or some other appropriate authority. Now that we have gone ahead and signed a domain name, we can select Next.

Again we need to wait. Once that domain has been set up, it's now going to set the DNS server. That's what's happening to this screen right here. We need to go ahead and put in the password that we previously used on this computer, and confirm it, and click Next. You'll notice a warning message that came up here. Do not worry about this warning message. If we go and show the full message, you'll realize down here at the bottom there is this little part of the message that says, otherwise no action is required.

This message came up because we do not have a DNS server setup yet. Since we are setting up the DNS server as we do this we can just click okay here and ignore the message. Go ahead and select next. Now we have to wait a minute while the server creates a net BIOS domain name for itself. Now the net BIOS domain name has been created we can select next. Select Next once more. Select Next one more time. And now, we need to wait while the DNS server is set up.

Now the DNS server's set up, you can go ahead and select Install. There are prerequisites here that we are just going to pass over, because the prerequisites are required if a DNS server is already present on the network. In this case, the DNS server is not present, so it will configure the prerequisite automatically. Now you go ahead and select Close. And close one more time. And the server should restart itself. Now the server has reboot itself, so let's go ahead and log onto it. One of the first things I want you to notice about this is now instead of saying basic server up here, it now says random domain because that's what we called our domain controller.

This is the first indication that we did this correctly. Once the server management comes up, I'll show you another indication that this was done correctly. Go over here to the local server. And once that comes up, come over here and look at computer name and domain. You'll notice we are now reported as an official domain instead of a workgroup.

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