How to turn on Automatic Updates in Server Core


Its pretty simple to turn the automatic updates in Server Core by using scregedit to modify the registry, simply type in this command :

cscript c:\Windows\system32\scregedit.wsf /au 4

After that, you do have to stop and start the Windows Update service

net stop wuauserv
net start wuauserv

The swtich /au 4 sets the time for checking the updates at 3am. It also sets the server to reboot if the updates require it to. You can disable automatic updates by using /au 1 switch or /v to view the current settings. To force an immediate check for updates, run the following command:

wuauclt /detectnow

Remotley Administer Server Core from Vista or Windows Server 2008


You can use Windows Remote Shell (WinRS) in Vista and Windows Server 2008 to remotely manage and administer Server Core. The WinRS client passes the commands to a WinRS listener on Server Core, which passes the commands to a prompt, captures the output and returns it to the WinRS client. To do this, you have to enable Windows Remote Managment (WinRM) on Server Core, you will run the following command :

winrm quickconfig

You can then run for example this command to see the license status on the Server Core remotely from Vista or the full installation on Windows Server 2008

winrs -r:NameofServerCore "cscript c:\Windows\System32\slmgr.vbs -dli"

Note that you can also use tools such as Windows Management Instrumentation command line (WMIC) and PowerShell thru WMI calls to manager Server Core. At this time Server Core does not support PowerShell directly since it relies on .NET Framework which is not there in Windows Server without Windows

Install Server Roles and features on Server Core


So In Windows Server 2008, there are roles such as AD Domain Services, DHCP, DNS, the roles services pertaining to roles such as AD Certificate Services, DFS, and finally there are optional features such as .NET Framework Services, Network Load Balancine (NLB), etc. With the exception of the Active Directory Domain Services role, you install server roles and features by using the ocsetup command. The syntax for ocsetup is the same for roles and features. The command is case sensitive, and you need to know the correct capitalization for a server role or feature, you can get that by running oclist command.

For instance, the following command installs Windows Server Backup, which is a feature

start /w ocsetup WindowsServerBackup

Using the /w switch indicates when ocsetup has finished installing the new role of feature. It also stops user from initiating another command while it’s running.

You can also find out what is already installed by running following oclist syntax

oclist | find "installed"