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SharePoint 2010 : Virtual Machine Setup and SharePoint Configuration (part 1) - Set Up a Pre-configured VM

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1. Options for Software Installation and Configuration

The authors went back and forth between two viable options for setting up an environment in which you can test the tools. On one hand, you have the option to download a VM onto an existing machine that has Windows 2008 R2 with Hyper-V enabled. On the other hand, you might want to start from scratch by installing Windows 2008 R2, enabling Hyper-V, and creating your own VMs by installing and configuring the available 180-day evaluation software. The benefits and tradeoffs of each method are described in the following table.

 

Benefits

Tradeoffs

Preconfigured VM

You get a large variety of software features already installed and configured on one VM.

The size of the VM and number of pre-configured platforms require a robust machine with a minimum of 4 GB of RAM, with 8 GB recommended.

The files might take more than an afternoon to download.

 

Much simpler and quicker than manually installing and creating your VMs.

Some troubleshooting is required.

Manual setup

You get the IT professional experience and understanding from setting up your own VM, which can prove helpful if you need to set up a development or production environment in the future.

This option requires more research about installing and configuring the software that is needed for each VM, and thus requires more time. You will need to seek out various online resources to find out how others overcame some of the potential blocking issues.

 

You have the option of choosing the minimum configuration to test the tools.

You must download and install more software if you want to try out all that the pre-configured VMs have to offer.

In the preconfigured VM, Active Directory has been configured for more than 200 “demo” users with metadata in an organizational structure.

SharePoint Server 2010 has been configured in a “complete” farm, using Kerberos authentication and the default SQL Server 2008 instance for data, and has a site collection created by using the Team Site template at http://intranet/ and a FAST Search Center at http://intranet/search/.

2. Overview of Hyper-V, for Both Options

For both manual setup and pre-configured setup, you must install Windows Server 2008 R2 and enable the Hyper-V role. It gives you the tools and services to create and manage a VM-based computing environment. You can manage and run multiple VMs on one physical computer using Hyper-V. You can use the available trial version for 180 days.

The computer you choose as the host also matters, because it must have a Hyper-V-capable processor.

3. Option 1: Set Up a Pre-configured VM

The following is a modified version of the Virtual Machine Setup Guide.docx, which you get when you download the install files.

Download

The download is very large and usually requires some time. We recommend that you use the Akamai Download Manager to download faster; it also can pause and resume if the download is interrupted. Make sure to locate the faster download links at the bottom of the main download page at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=751fa0d1-356c-4002-9c60-d539896c66ce&displaylang=en .

Of the files you find on that page, you need the following:

  • Virtual Machine 2010-7a parts 1-12

  • Virtual Machine 2010-7a parts 13-20, SFV & Setup Guide

  • Virtual Machine 2010-7b (needed only if you want to run Exchange Server)

3.1 What Comes with the Download and Other Considerations

Virtual Machine “a”

The 2010-7a VM contains the following pre-configured software:

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard Evaluation Edition x64, running as an Active Directory Domain Controller for the “CONTOSO.COM” domain with DNS and WINS

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise Edition with Analysis, Notification, and Reporting Services

  • Microsoft Office Communication Server 2007 R2

  • Microsoft Visual Studio 2010

  • Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 Enterprise Edition

  • Microsoft Office Web Applications

  • FAST Search for SharePoint 2010

  • Microsoft Project Server 2010

  • Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010

  • Microsoft Visio 2010

  • Microsoft Project 2010

  • Microsoft Office Communicator 2007 R2

(Optional) Virtual Machine “b”

The 2010-7b VM contains the following pre-configured software:

Note

VM 2010-7b is optional.

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard Evaluation Edition x64, joined to the “CONTOSO.COM” domain

  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2010

System Requirements

To install VM “a”, you will need the following:

  • Supported Operating Systems: Windows Server 2008 R2

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 with the Hyper-V role enabled

  • Drive Formatting: NTFS

  • Processor: Intel VT or AMD-V capable

  • RAM: 8 GB or more (more is always nice)

  • Hard disk space required for install: 50 GB

3.2 Pre-configured VM Setup

Performance Considerations

Unpack and run the VM image on a fast hard drive (7200 RPM or better). This drive will work better if it is different from the drive containing the operating system of the host machine. If you are installing the VM on a laptop, a second internal drive or external eSATA drive works best, although a USB 2.0 (make sure it’s 2.0, because 1.1 is too slow) or FireWire connection is acceptable. For the absolute best performance, use a second internal SSD drive.

Host Configuration

You can use the following procedure to configure the VM host.

To prepare the host machine

  1. Install the Hyper-V role on your Windows Server 2008 R2 host.

    Note

    Use Windows Server 2008 R2. Older versions of Hyper-V cannot import the VM package, can trigger activation of the software included in the image, and are likely to give you reduced performance.

  2. Extract the VM image.

    1. Copy the archive files for the VM to local disk.

    2. Extract the VM image by running the self-extracting executable.

    3. Set the extraction location on a separate drive .

    Note

    Extracting can take some time, depending on your machine’s resources.

    To prepare the host machine

Configure Hyper-V for the VM

You must configure Hyper-V so that it runs in a protected virtual network. This is because the VM does not contain any antivirus software, and items such as MAC addresses, IP addresses, host names, and so on might conflict with other running instances of the VM or with potentially unrelated physical machines. The internal virtual network configuration that you create in the following procedure allows the host machine to access the VM by using Remote Desktop. We recommend that you do not use an external network for this VM.

If you choose to run the VM with external access, set up a second network card (NIC) on the physical machine and configure the Hyper-V to use that NIC. The primary NIC for the host is configured to use a static IP address—and changing this setting will produce server errors. Your external network configuration in Virtual Network Manager might resemble the following illustration.

Configure Hyper-V for the VM

To configure Hyper-V for the VM

  1. Configure the Hyper-V Manager.

  2. Start Hyper-V Manager from Control Panel -> Administrative Tools.

  3. Confirm that the local host machine appears in the Hyper-V Manager list, and select it if it’s not already selected.

  4. Under Actions, click Virtual Network Manager.

    Note

    After you perform this step, the VM is configured with a different NIC card.

  5. Confirm that you have created an internal virtual network named “Internal.” Internal networks limit connectivity to only VMs and the host. If no such network exists, create one now by performing the following steps:

    1. Click Virtual Network Manager in the Actions pane.

    2. Choose New Virtual Network in the Virtual Networks pane.

      To configure Hyper-V for the VM
    3. Choose Internal from the type list, and click Add.

    4. Type Internal, and then click OK.

    To configure Hyper-V for the VM

    To learn more about the different types of virtual networks, see the blog post, “Hyper-V: What are the uses for different types of virtual networks?” at http://blogs.technet.com/b/jhoward/archive/2008/06/17/hyper-v-what-are-the-uses-for-different-types-of-virtual-networks.aspx .

To import and configure the VM

Due to the activation and expiration models in Windows Server 2008 and R2, you should retain a copy of the VMs you downloaded and create a snapshot before you first run the VMs. For more information, see the Activation and Expiration section later in this appendix.

  1. Under Actions, click Import Virtual Machine.

  2. Click Browse to select the folder where you extracted the VM package. Keep the default settings.

  3. Click Import, and wait for the import operation to complete—you can see the import status in the Operations column.

  4. Select the newly imported VM, and then click Settings in the right pane of the Hyper-V Manager.

  5. Confirm (and correct if necessary) that the Network Adapter “VM Bus Network Adapter” is connected to the “Internal” network from Step 5d of the preceding procedure (“To configure Hyper-V for the VM”). Please do not add a new Network Adapter (unless you must add the Internal Network).

  6. Close the VM Settings dialog box. The new VM should appear in your Virtual Machines list.

    To import and configure the VM

    Note

    The machine we use has 12 GB of memory and an I7 Intel processor, which allows us to run four VMs at a time (the preconfigured VM, 2010-7a, and the two-machine setup we describe later in this appendix. The other machines, 2010-7b and MOSS-BI, are turned off to save on machine resources. Serious performance issues could occur if you have them all running at the same time.

  7. Start the virtual image.

  8. After the machine starts, log in as Administrator (press Ctrl+Alt+End). The password is pass@word1.

If you were unable to import the VM, we suggest that you use the following procedure to create a new VM and restore the 2010-7a.vhd that you extracted.

To restore VM 2010-7a.vhd

  1. In Hyper-V Manager, under the Actions pane, click New and then click Virtual Machine to start the New Virtual Machine Wizard.

    To restore VM 2010-7a.vhd
  2. Click Next. On the Specify Name And Location page, shown in the following illustration, determine where you want to store the new virtual machine, and then click Next.

    To restore VM 2010-7a.vhd
  3. In the Assign Memory dialog box, assign 4000 MB, and then click Next.

  4. In the Configure Networking dialog box, select Internal if you have already configured it in Network Manager in the Hyper-V Manager. If not, you can change it later in the VM’s Settings dialog box in Hyper-V Manager.

  5. On the Connect Virtual Hard Disk page, shown in the following illustration, select Use An Existing Virtual Hard Disk. Click Browse to locate the extracted 2010-7a VM, and then click Next.

    To restore VM 2010-7a.vhd
  6. In the Installations Options dialog box, click Next. The 2010-7a VM appears in your Hyper-V Manager under Virtual Machines, as shown in the following illustration. However, notice that it is now shut off.

    To restore VM 2010-7a.vhd
  7. Double-click the new VM, and then click the green button to turn on the VM. When it turns on, you should see it starting, as shown in the following illustration.

    To restore VM 2010-7a.vhd

After you log in as Administrator (password: pass@word1), the installation requires about 10 to 15 minutes to finish the configuration, because it must detect the host hardware and install the appropriate drivers. Then you must reboot the machine. After the machine reboots, use the following procedure to configure the network adapter in the VM (not in the host).

To configure the network adapter

  1. Open the Network and Sharing Center in Control Panel.

  2. Click Change Adapter Settings.

  3. Right-click the adapter and click Properties.

  4. Select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4), and click Properties.

  5. Select Use The Following IP Address, and then type the following values:

    • IP Address: 192.168.150.1

    • Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0

    • Default Gateway: (leave blank)

    • Preferred DNS Server: 192.168.150.1

Your Network and Sharing Center should resemble the following illustration.

To configure the network adapter

Your Internet Protocol (TCP/IPv4) Properties should resemble the following illustration.

To configure the network adapter

Now the VM is ready to use. Enjoy!

Snapshots and Saved State

Hyper-V introduces the concept of “snapshots,” which you can use to revert a VM to a previous configuration state.

To create a snapshot

  1. Open or return to the Hyper-V Manager.

  2. Select the VM, and under Actions, click Snapshot.

  3. Wait for the snapshot captures to complete.

  4. (Optional) Select each VM, and rename the snapshots you have just created.

To apply a snapshot

  1. Open or return to the Hyper-V Manager.

  2. Select the VM, right-click the snapshot you want to use, and choose Apply. You will be prompted to save the current state as a snapshot. Doing so retains your current state, skipping discards it.

Start the VM

Before each VM session, use the following procedure to set up the environment.

To start the 2010-7a VM

  1. Return to or start the Hyper-V Manager.

  2. Select the VM.

  3. Click Start.

  4. Click Connect. When the Virtual Machine Connection window appears, wait for the VM to boot up and reach the login screen.

    Important

    The VM Connection uses Ctrl-Alt-Home instead of the normal Ctrl-Alt-Del sequence for login.

    Log in to the image using the Virtual Machine Console as the following user:

    • User: administrator

    • Password: pass@word1

    • Domain: CONTOSO

To stop the VM image

  1. Click Shut Down from the Virtual Machine Connection or from the Hyper-V.

Activation and Expiration

The VMs contained in this package are inactivated 180-day evaluations. These evaluation copies require activation, or rearming, after a 10-day period; otherwise, they shut down after 2 hours of continuous operation. It is optional to activate the operating system in the VM.

Important

Avoid performing the following procedure, unless your initial 10-day evaluation period has expired.

To reset the activation or “rearm” the VM

You can perform the “rearm” procedure only a limited number of times—generally four, but even fewer in some cases. 

  1. Start up and login to the VM.

  2. Open an elevated (Run as Administrator) command prompt.

  3. Run “slmgr –rearm” (no quotes) in the command prompt.

  4. Wait for the pop-up confirmation that the configuration changes are complete.

  5. Reboot the VM.

  6. Repeat for each Windows Server 2008 R2 VM in the set.

To activate the VM, you need an Internet connection. For that, you must add a second NIC to the VM by using the Hyper-V Management Console, and then connect it to an external network connection that has Internet access. You can then activate Windows from within the VM. Windows still expires after 180 days but does not prompt for activation or shut down after 2 hours.

Post-Setup Performance Tweaks

This section provides procedures you can perform for the host machine that can help you get best performance.

To restore the Microsoft Contoso BI Demo Dataset for Retail Industry

  1. Go to the download Link to see instructions at the bottom of the page: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=868662dc-187a-4a85-b611-b7df7dc909fc .

  2. The Contoso_Retail.abf and Contoso_RetailDW.bak are located on the VM demo2010a C: drive.

To defragment all host drives

  1. Open Windows Explorer, right-click the C: drive icon, and click Properties.

  2. On the Tools tab, click Defragment Now.

  3. Confirm that the C: drive is the selected volume, and then click Defragment.

  4. Wait for the defragmentation to complete. This can take anywhere from a few seconds to a few hours, depending on the size of the drive and how fragmented it is. You might need to run this multiple times for full effect.

  5. Repeat for all other host hard drives.

To set the host video resolution

  1. Right-click the desktop, select Properties, and then select Settings.

  2. Confirm that the resolution is at least 1024 × 768 (the minimum recommended resolution is 1280 × 1024) and that the color depth is at least 16-bit.

  3. Open the Control Panel and select Date And Time.

  4. Confirm that the date and time are accurate; if they’re not, correct them.

To disable virus scanning

Follow the procedures for your antivirus software to disable any “real-time” scanning of the Hyper-V processes and the folder where you unpacked the VM files. For more details, see the support information at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/961804 .

To convert the VM’s dynamic Virtual Hard Drive (VHD) to a static VHD

If you have sufficient drive space, consider performing this conversion procedure. The fixed VHD is considerably larger—135 GB—but provides better performance.

  1. Open the Hyper-V Manager on the host. Select the VM in the Virtual Machines pane.

  2. Click Settings in the Actions pane.

  3. Choose the Hard Drive under IDE Controller 0 in the Hardware pane.

  4. Directly below the path of the VHD file, click Edit.

  5. Choose the Convert option, and then click Next.

  6. Supply a file path and name for the new fixed disk.

  7. Click Finish, and wait for the edit operation to complete.

  8. Click Browse to navigate to the VHD file, and choose the fixed VHD you just created.

  9. Click OK to apply the change, and then close the settings window.

  10. Defragment the host drive containing the new fixed VHD.

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