Allow & Enable Remote Management of Server 2008 R2 Server Core

Server Core is usually intended to be remotely managed. This makes your life easier, as you can manage remote servers and core installations on your Windows 7 workstation, in the comfort of your own office. To do that, you must first make sure that you initially configure the machine with a proper IP address, add it to a domain (if needed) and open the correct Firewall rules and ports. After doing that, you can relax and start using local GUI-based management tools to remotely manage the server, just like you would for any server.

So, how do you enable these rules? Read on.

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The easiest method would be to use the built-in SCONFIG tool.

Log in to the core machine, and launch SCONFIG:

Windows Server 2008 R2 Server Core: launch SCONFIG

Assuming that the machine is properly joined to a domain, press 4 to enable remote management.

SCONFIG: enable Remote Management

To allow remote management through Server Manager, press 3.

SCONFIG: Remote Server Manager enabled

You’ll be notified when settings are completed.

You can also press 4 to view the firewall settings, however, this is not necessary.

SCONFIG: view firewall settings

Next, head on to your Windows 7 workstation where you’ve got RSAT installed, and run Server Manager. If you do NOT have Server Manager installed, you must enable it (only after installing RSAT) by using the Turn Windows Features On or Off in Control Panel.

RSAT: run Server Manager

Assuming that both Windows 7 and the remote server core are members of the same Active Directory domain, all you need to do is to right-click on the Server Manager item and select “Connect to Another Computer“.

Remote Server Administration Tools: Server Manager

In the Connect to Another Computer window, type the name or browse to the server you wish to connect to.

RSAT: Connect to Another Computer

Remote Server Administration Tools: Server Manager

Remote Server Administration Tools: Server Manager

Have fun

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