Server 2008 R2 wont boot after restart

At Friday I had strange problem. Windows 2008 R2 server didn’t start up after restart. It stop on message where loading Group Policy Client. When we finally receive option to boot to safe mode, server stops at loading classpnp.sys file.

Why we had this problem? At first problem was with IBM 8k RAID controller. Controller was dying and it works in unusual way. Windows show this in system log

ErrorLog

I change controller but problem still exist. It seems that windows wrote some bad records in rebooting process. I was pretty certain in that, after we change everything on server except HDDs I was leave server to boot to safe mode for two hours. After two hours server still tries to loading classpnp.sys.

DART tools didn’t help me, because boot stops after finding installation. Instead getting DART console, only I can see is loading circle of Windows Server 2008 R2. Colleague of mine Romeo Mlinar help me with advice. On this controller I hade two arrays: RAID 1 and RAID 5. He told me: try to remove RAID 5 array and try to boot. He got a point

But instead of DART tools I use Windows Server 2008 R2 installation CD. Boot from CD use option to repair installation and get CMD.

First step was to do: sfc /SCANNOW /OFFBOOTDIR=C:\ /OFFWINDIR=C:\WINDOWS\

Second step was to do: StartRep.exe from recovery directory in installation CD.

After this two steps everything was back to normal an my server was booting normaly

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Reinstalling WSUS after SCCM installation

If you want to use SCCM 2012 as a software update point (SUP), you will have to install WSUS first.

On Windows Server 2008 R2 installation of WSUS is integrated as a server role. You don’t need to download installer separately.

Catch is that you will need to use SCCM server database. But if you install WSUS first You will probably install its own database.

Correct steps will be:

1. – Install SQL server , and create database for SCCM use

2. – Install WSUS, and point it to SCCM database

3. – Install SCCM

But if you are install your SCCM as I do, then you will have a problem.

My steps was:

1. – install WSUS

2. – Install SQL

3. – Install SCCM

After this my only option was to uninstall WSUS, and install it back again with correct parameters.

Uninstall was completed successfully. But on installation I was faced with error. Error was “the update could not be found there may be a network connection issue”.

This error is caused by setting in GPO of SCCM server. To resolve this You must point to gpedit.msc and then go to Computer Configuration – Administrative Templates – Windows Components – Windows Update. Put “Automatic Updates” and “Specify Intranet Microsoft update service location” to “not configured”.

Important thing is that you have proxy settings configured in your correctly web browser .

After this I was able to continue with installation without error.

Why is this update option important?

WSUS using Dynamic Installer to download all needed content for installation from Microsoft websites. Wrong thinking is that WSUS binaries is on server or on CD.

Now my WSUS is working fine and I can go further with SCCM 2012

Managed Service Accounts in Active Directory

We all heard that one of many features in Windows server 2008 R2 is Managed Service Account.

Prerequisites for that is domain functionality raised to Windows Server 2008 R2

Most common mistake is that you will create managed service account using Active Directory Users And Computers snap-in. You will not.

Either if you are created account in Managed Service Accounts container it is still user account. To make it work you must give user rights “logon as a service” and “logon as a bat job”.

To create Managed Service Account you must use Power Shell. Creating service accounts is not so complicated. You can create it using simple script

New-ADServiceAccount –name (desired name of account).

Of course before you must “tell” powershell to use Active Directory module. Syntax for this is:

Import-module ActiveDirectory

And before that you must have installed feature:

Active Directory module for Power Shell

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I’ve described this reversed with reason.

Most common is that you first load module to Power Shell and then start wit Your managed service accounts.

When you are created service account you need to install it on server where You want to use it. Syntax is:

install-ADServiceAccount –identity “(name of service account)”

To install account you must “run as administrator” Power Shell or you will receive error.

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REMEMBER: You must have ONE managed service account per server. This is the big difference between managed service account and former virtual account.

Now you are ready to use managed service account with specific services

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For more on this topic you can contact this link