Quick Reference for Upgrading to Windows Server 2012 R2

With the announcement of Windows Server 2012 R2 I have been receiving a lot of questions around upgrading.  To assist, I have put together a quick reference slide.  For details utilize the link referenced at the bottom of the slide.



Clean Install – wipe clean – install and restore via back-up

Upgrade – In place – settings, server roles and data kept in tack

  • Even with supported upgrade paths certain roles may require additional  preparation – see Technet

Migration – Move from existing OS to current on new hardware

License Convert –For example move from Standard to Data Center in same release or Evaluation to Licensed

  • Use DISM tool
  • To convert evaluation to current release – from elevated prompt provide edition ID and retail product key. The server will start twice.
  • To convert from Evaluation to 2012 R2 Essentials – you must enter license or key via slmgr.vbs command.
  • Domain Controller evaluations cannot be converted you must install an additional DC on a server running a retail version and remove AD DS from the DC

Minimum Windows Server 2012 R2 requirements referenced above are the minimum for Core Server installation. 

Kathleen Molosky 2013

Kathleen Molosky