Microsoft Server

Update or Install missing drivers on Windows Server Core 2016/2019 for free

Install Drive Easy Free from:
https://www.drivereasy.com/download-free-version/

Start DriverEasy from

“C:\Program Files\Easeware\DriverEasy\DriverEasy.exe”

Scan the machine and pick the driver you need from the list and download it.

In the command prompt, cd to folder:

c:\users\<username here>\Appdata\Roaming\Easeware\DriverEasy\Drivers\

To find the driver you just downloaded, type:
dir *.inf /s/b
CD to that directory and type:
pnputil -i -a *.inf

Note: DriverEasy will crash after ever single download as it does not have a GUI to fall back on, so, unless you want to spend a lot of time restarting DriverEasy, only bother with the drivers you really need. I usually only bother with storage and network drivers.
Also, if you happen to have core installed on a laptop with integrated hardware like webcams, etc. these drivers will have issues installing as the underlying infrastructure is missing

Hyper-V

Windows 2000 on Hyper-V

Sometimes it’s necessary to install an old Operating System, but you really cannot (or don’t want to) get the old hardware out, even if it would still work.
I was in such a position that I had to install Windows 2000 Server. After locating the installation media, I decided it was a good idea to get it running on the 2019 Hyper-V cluster. This actually can be done, but there are a few hoops to jump through:

– The base VM must be setup with a legacy network card.
– Also the vCPU must be set to legacy mode for this VM.
– The Windows 2000 installation media must have SP4 slipstreamed.
If SP4 is not slipstreamed into the installation media, setup will not even properly start, but will Blue Screen with:

STOP: 0x0000001E (…) KMODE_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED on the driver acpi.sys

If you don’t have the original installation media with SP4 installed, you can download SP4 from WinWorldPC and slipstream yourself as explained here.

Creating the VM

This part is pretty much the standard process. I’ve named my VM: Windows 2000 Adv En, Generation 1 VM type, Startup Memory of 3072MB and make sure Dynamic Memory is turned off. Also leave the network card as Not Connected.
Note: I’ve put the RAM to 3GB as Windows 2000 is a 32bit operating system and is not capable of addressing much more.

Create a new virtual hard disk. For Windows 2000 you don’t really need a lot, so I gave it 20GB. A lot more than it needs, but it doesn’t really matter. A fixed size seems to be the fastest for the installation, as the formatting of the disk during setup seems faster. Make sure you create a VHD and not a VHDX. The OS intermittently Blue Screens after the installation of the storage drivers of a VHDX is used.

Next remove the SCSI controller. Windows 2000 does not support the SCSI controller and will Blue Screen with:

STOP: 0xC0000263 {Driver Entry Point Not Found} The \SystemRoot\system32\DRIVERS\storvsc.sys device driver could not locate the entry point ZwQueryFullAttributesFile in driver ntoskrnl.exe.

On the install options tick the box to install an operating system from a bootable CD/DVD-ROM, select Image File and browse to where the Windows 2000 iso is stored and click finish.

Enable legacy settings

The following step is to enable the vCPU legacy compatibility for Windows 2000. So open up Powershell in administrator mode and enter:

Set-VMProcessor <VM Name Here> -CompatibilityForOlderOperatingSystemsEnabled $true

So in my case I type:

Set-VMProcessor “Windows 2000 Adv En” -CompatibilityForOlderOperatingSystemsEnabled $true
(Notice the quotes. These are needed if you have spaces in your VM name)

If you need network access, you need to setup a legacy network adapter. In the Hyper-V manager select Settings for your VM and select Network Adapter. Click the Remove button. Now click on Add Hardware and add a Legacy Network Adapter. The NIC will stay disconnected if you don’t specifically connected to the virtual switch in the settings of the Legacy Network Adapter. If you have any further network configuration, like named vLANs, you can set these there.
Note: Since Windows 2000 (and this goes for Windows NT3.51, NT4 and 2003 as well) has not had any security patches for years and these were not know for security to begin with, be very careful connecting a legacy VM to the internet.

From here you can follow the normal setup process for Windows 2000 and this should succeed. During the setup of the operating system, the mouse is not going to be available. You will not be able to immediately add the server to a domain during setup either. The reason for this is that Server 2019 does not offer Windows 2000 compatible integration services. These will have to be installed manually after setup completes.
The latest installable integration services that will install most drivers on Windows 2000 are the vmguest.iso is for Windows Server 2008R2 (Linked below), but the 2008 version will work. Unfortunately Microsoft no longer officially hosts these on their webpage.

Various versions of the VM Guest tools:
Hyper-V2008-vmguest.iso
Hyper-V2008R2-vmguest.iso
Hyper-V2012R2-vmguest.iso