Monday 28 April 2008

Server Core - Activation Error 0x8007232B

When we went to activate our Open License version of Server Core, we ended up with the following error:
Activating Windows Server(R), ServerStandardCore edition (xxx-xxx-xxx-xxx-xxxxx) ...
Run 'slui.exe 0x2a 0x8007232B' to display the error text.
Error: 0x8007232B
That error has been encountered before.

Server Core: Error 0x8007232B

The error was encountered when we went to activate our Open Licensing version of Windows Vista: Windows Vista - Activation Error: Code 0x8007232b DNS Name does not exist.

In the case of Windows Vista, it was because we installed Vista without a product key.

Well, when installing Server Core, no product key was requested and we are not using the unattend file to install yet.

So, the challenge now becomes, how do we get that key in there and activate the product?

The command we ran to attempt the activation was:
slmgr.vbs -ato
A little searching was required in order to find the right command line commands.

We found them on Sander Berkouwer's blog "The things that are better left unspoken" Activating Server Core.

The commands are as follows:
  1. start /w slmgr.vbs -ipk ABCDE-FGHIJ-KLMNO-PQRST-UVWXY
    • Format of the product key should be exact
  2. start /w slmgr.vbs -ato
If the activation process is successful, one will see:

Product activated successfully.

This process will also switch the Activation process from KMS to MAK which is the preferential activation method for us.

We were now able to go on and discover how to install and setup Hyper-V, configure the built-in firewall for remote management and Hyper-V management, and all sorts of fun stuff that we need to discover at the command line! ;)

The Server Core command line sure is both refreshing and challenging at the same time.

It brings back memories of the challenges of doing things like setting up the AutoExec.bat file for memory management to squeeze the most conventional memory we could (my personal record was 614KB) to get those games up and running.

Other very exciting and fun stuff in the DOS command line were things like getting the TCP/IP networking configuration to actually work and prepping a system for a Windows 3.xx install! :D

Resources for Server Core are out there, but are still rather spotty due to the newness of the OS.

We have one book on the subject so far, which is in the process of being read and evaluated.

Here are some resources on Server Core: Server Core is definitely a neat OS option in Server 2008!

And, it is looking like the same VMs that ran on W2K3 R2 hosting Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 are a lot faster on similar equipment in Hyper-V installed on Server Core. Having the option to specify the number of cores per VM is a pretty neat feature and can be very handy for things like hosting server OSs.

More to come and thanks for reading! :)

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists

*All Mac on SBS posts are posted on our in-house iMac via the Safari Web browser.

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