Sunday 21 February 2010

Installing Server 2008 Hyper-V R2 with USB on Dell PowerEdge T310 where CD/DVD missing device driver

I've got an excellent new Dell PowerEdge T310 - great spec; quad core Xeon cpu, 16GB DDR3 1333Mhz, 4x drives in RAID1 with SAS6i/R and an iDRAC express remote management card - love it. Plan is to load Microsoft Hyper-V R2 which is the Server 2008 R2 in core mode with just the Hyper-V role loaded. We can then virtualise SBS 2008 as one guest OS to run file sharing, Exchange email, etc and a second guest OS with Server 2008 and SQL server for the accountants line of business (LOB) application - which is IRIS Accounts Practice.

Fell at the first hurdle though :-( Downloaded the free Hyper-V R2 ISO from Microsoft, burnt to DVD and booted. Unfortunately it kept reporting the CD/DVD drive was missing part way through setup. Certainly couldn't browse for it and couldn't see any relevant Dell drivers I should be loading or using F6 with. First error was failed to find INSTALL.WIN in SOURCES directory then got an error that the CD/DVD device driver was missing.

I didn't manage to fix this problem and being a Sunday not sure that Dell would be available, but I found a handy workaround:

You need an empty 2GB (or more) flash drive (drive F: on my laptop) and the Hyper-V R2 DVD (drive E: in my case). I used my Win 7 PC to follow these instructions to format it and make it bootable: (use the comments from rsvr85)
Basically from a command prompt (started using Run As Administrator)
> e:\boot\dispkpart
list disk
select disk 1 (this may be disk 2 etc if you have more than one drive connected)
(take care you have the USB disk because we're about to format it and wipe all data)
create partition primary
select partition 1
format fs=fat32 quick

Then copy all the files from the Hyper-V R2 DVD to the flash drive and you have a bootable Hyper-V R2 install USB drive.

Put the flash drive in the Dell Poweredge T310 server and press F11 at boot. You can then choose Hard Disk > Front USB / Flash drive name to boot from.

The Hyper-V R2 install proceeds normally without any missing CD/DVD drive, can't find INSTALL.WIN or CD/DVD device driver missing errors. I'm betting it installs quicker too from a flash drive.

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