Manage Server 2008 R2 From Windows 8 Server

One of the really nice features in Windows 8 Server is the re-vamped Server Manager.  I have to admit, I like it a LOT, mainly because as you add more servers in your environment to the interface, Server Manager brings in information from each system and starts fleshing out the interface with dynamic groups based on installed server roles.  Not to mention the ability to create your own server groups.

By default, any Windows 8 Server can manage all the other Windows 8 Servers in your environment (assuming common credentials between them), but what about earlier versions of Windows?

As much as it feels weird to refer to Windows Server 2008 R2 as an “earlier” version of Windows, in the world of Windows 8 Server that’s exactly what it is.

If you add a Server 2008 R2 system to the Server Manager console in Windows 8 Server, you’ll get the following error message:

“Not accessible – Verify earlier versions of Windows run the Management WTR package”

Verify earlier versions of Windows run Management WTR package

I tried to overcome this in the Developer Preview – basically it hinges on Windows 8 Server running newer Windows Management Framework (WMF) technology, so there’s a disconnect between the two kernel versions.  Installing versions 3.0 CTP1 and CTP2 on Server 2008 R2 didn’t overcome this, but there’s been a Beta release of WMF3, and this solves the issue.

First, download and install the correct version of Windows Management Framework 3.0 from here.

Install KB2506143

Install KB2506143

Reboot when finished.

Then, launch a PowerShell windows as an Administrator and enter the following:

Set-ExecutionPolicy -ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned


and then

Configure-SMRemoting.ps1 -force -enable


Remote PowerShell management

Remote PowerShell management

Once complete, go back to Server Manager on the Windows 8 Server system, right-click the server and select Refresh. All being well, the Windows 8 Server will now be able to talk to the Server 2008 R2 system, will query it correctly and will start creating and fleshing out dynamic groups based on whatever roles are detected.

W2K8R2 in Server Manager

If you’re interested in more detailed reading on the TechNet pages I grabbed all the relevant information from, here they are:



14 comments to Manage Server 2008 R2 From Windows 8 Server

  • Ram

    Thanks for the info. Followed the instruction – Worked perfectly…..

  • Thanks for the information, I was stuck at WMF 3.0 Beta installation and now I can see them all from my Windows Server 8.

  • And BTW – you need to have .NET Framework 4 installed on your Server 2008 R2 prior to WMF 3, otherwise you will get “The update is not applicable for your system” message.

  • Steven

    Do you think Windows Management Framework 3.0 will be available for Windows 2003 operating systems ? I would like to manage these servers as well from the Server Manager Windows 8.

    • James Bannan

      Not sure – according to the TechNet article, Windows Server 2003 will only have “Limited support; online and offline status only” management from Windows 8 Server. Based on that, I don’t know whether WMF3.0 for Server 2003 would ever be necessary.

  • Daniel Smith

    Thanks for this! It worked great one my WHS VM but I’m having an issue on hyper-v core 2008 r2. I got the server core version of .Net 4 installed, installed WMF 3 beta, restarted, got into powershell ran the first command hit y and that worked fine. But when I did the “Configure-SMRemoting.ps1 -force -enable” I get this error “Object reference not set to an instance of an object.” Is that because server manager isn’t on server core? Is there another script I need to run to get it working on server core? I’m one step away!

    • Daniel Smith

      Follow up! I found this blog and it added a step for Server Core which was after installing WMF 3.0 and before running the PS commands do this

      “Dism.exe /Online /Enable-Feature /FeatureName:NetFx2-ServerCore /FeatureName:MicrosoftWindowsPowerShell /FeatureName:ServerManager-PSH-Cmdlets /FeatureName:BestPractices-PSH-Cmdlets”

      I ran that even restarted and then ran the ps scripts and it still doesn’t work on server core.

  • Stephen Ashworth

    Thank you, Mr. Banaan.

    Pre-Reqs for this = .Net4 on the 2008 R2 Server, just fyi.

  • mxdog

    Great info thanks

    This worked for me on a fresh HPC SP1 VM but for some reason on my DC I always get access denied 0x8007005
    error (running the SP..same os) TG its a test environment.

    My complements..I can never figure out (find) these small details that make stuff work and i can never figure out how you answer guys find them or figure them out I spent about a week trying on that dc and the vm was a test that just happened to work after I found this post.

    Again thx you are a god

  • hi,
    i have problem … i install windows server 8 but when i can manage in workgroup server 2008 r2 from server manager in windows 8 i got only this error .. i add server to trusted host but no success …can you help me anyone? i authenticated as administrator

    “Error srv1 – Services refresh failed with the following error: The WinRM client cannot process the request. If the authentication scheme is different from Kerberos, or if the client computer is not joined to a domain, then HTTPS transport must be used or the destination machine must be added to the TrustedHosts configuration setting. Use winrm.cmd to configure TrustedHosts. Note that computers in the TrustedHosts list might not be authenticated. You can get more information about that by running the following command: winrm help config. “

  • Eli

    On my Windows 2008 R2 SP1 Hyper-V server, I have successfully installed the .NET4 and WMF3 and reboot the machine, set the PowerShell execution policy but still get the “This version of Hyper-V Manager cannot be used to manage servers running Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 R2.” error.

    I’m trying to connect the Hyper-V from Windows 8 Client HV manager.

    any idea?

  • Same here. From a Windows 8 client machine I’m unable to connect to Windows 2008 R2 Hyper-V servers. Installed either .Net 4 and WMF3

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