Windows Server 2012 virtualization

yes it is easy to use Hyper-V to virtualize Windows Server 2012. However it is not the same story with other products.

VirtualBox 4.1.6

we did the test with the version 4.1.6. It is not the last one. You can find the last version here VirtualBox webSite

VirtuaBox is able to read VHD so you have two options :

  • Download the VHD
  • Download the ISO to install Windows Server 2012 (recommended)
VHD or ISO can be download from Microsoft WebSite

Use a VHD

if you prefer the VHD you will have to follow this process just after the VM creation otherwise you will have an error (“Oracle VM Virtualbox Manager has stopped working”) the first time you will try to launch the Windows Server 2012 :

  1. Right click on the VHD under the SATA controller and select “Remove Attachment”.
  2. Right click on the IDE Controller and select “Add Hard Disk”.
  3. Click “Choose Existing Disk”.
  4. Locate and select the VHD you created in step 3.
  5. Click “OK” to save your settings.

Note that you may have to enable VT-x or AMD-V support in your computer’s BIOS.

Use an ISO

Nothing special for the ISO.

  • Create a new VM and select windows server 8 64bits
  • Create a new disk and select VDI of at least 20GB
  • Select your iso and start the VM

Ok now you can do your installation ūüôā


VMWare Workstation 8

I’ve done the test on the version 8.0.4. It works well but just to be sure to :

  • Choose Windows 7 and not windows 7 64 bits
  • Do not enter product key
  • Disable the power on after creation
  • Go in VM settings to disable “Connect at power on” for the floppy drive. If you are not doing this the install will fail because the autoinst.flp is missing the product key. Yes Windows server 2012 is pre-licenses.



First of all : it will not work on 4.1 version. We did the test on ESXi Vsphere 5.0 update 1

You should enable No Execute Memory Protection in the BIOS of the host to prevent the error code 0x0000005D.

Then if after the first reboot you have a black screen with the white ring (pic. 1) during a long time you must follow one of this process :


  • Change the virtual machine to use EFI instead of BIOS.
    • Right-click¬†the¬†virtual machine and click¬†Power¬†>¬†Shut Down Guest.
    • Right-click the virtual machine and click¬†Edit Settings.
    • Click the¬†Options¬†tab.
    • Click¬†Boot Options.
    • Click¬†EFI¬†under Firmware.
    • Click¬†OK.
    • Power on the virtual machine.
  • Add¬†vmGenCounter.enable = FALSE¬†to the¬†.vmx¬†file of the virtual machine.
    • Right-click the virtual machine and click¬†Power¬†>¬†Shut Down Guest.
    • Right-click the virtual machine and click¬†Edit Settings.
    • Click the¬†Options¬†tab.
    • Under Advanced, click¬†General.
    • Click¬†Configuration Parameters.
    • Click¬†Add Row.
    • Under name, enter¬†vmGenCounter.enable.
    • Under value, enter¬†False.
    • Click¬†OK¬†to save¬†the¬†changes and then close the window.
    • Power on the virtual machine.Note:¬†The workaround involving adding the¬†vmGenCounter.enable¬†parameter to the virtual machine .vmx file may cause the new snapshot protection for domain controllers introduced in Windows 8/Windows Server 2012 to stop functioning. For more information, see the Microsoft Technet Article¬†Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) Virtualization.

 Well you are now ready to install Microsoft Windows Server 2012 RC on most of virtual tools on the market.

I will not do a review of the installation because a lot of other blog already cover this topic so now I will focus on new features of this wonderfull operating system



4 Replies to “Windows Server 2012 virtualization”

  1. You were right about VirtualBox, but i had to “enable No Execute Memory Protection in the BIOS of the host to prevent the error code 0x0000005D” too (for VirtualBox).
    The Evaluation VHD or Evaluation ISO that can be downloaded from MS both need these “tricks”.
    Thanx 4 infos! It was very helpful.

  2. I’m having a little trouble getting Hyper-V added as a role on my Windows Server 2012 Datacenter edition install.

    I’m running Virtualbox 4.2.6 on a HP Elitebook 8540p that is maxed out in terms of CPU and Ram. My native OS is Ubuntu Linux 10.10.

    When I set up the VM, I assigned 4gb ram, 4 CPUs and an 80 GB HD Fixed. The server installed fine, updates fine, has internet just fine…everything is fine…all except Hyper-V. Whenever I try to add Hyper-V as a role, I can an error which says:

    “Hyper-V cannot be installed. The processor does not have required virtualization capabilities.”

    I’ve done a bunch of google searching but no silver bullet. Any thoughts?

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