installing hyper-v server 2016 on dl380g9 microSD storage

    After the miserable MOBO failure, I've reinstalled the system again, but, this time, the "install windows as usual" didn't work anymore. This is a symptom that somwthin was "strange" with first run. Anyway there is an hardcore a-la-slackware-linux solution for installation. I've updated the how-to accordingly.


    ok, yes, it's a microSD I know...
    anyway this is the how-to for anyone in need.
    I've wasted something like 2 days to figure out how to do this, despite being this a supported and certified solution. HP support has been partially useful. Infact Intelligent Provisioning (automatic provisioning for a given OS) is broken.


    • remove all of your disks, if you have disks into the arrays you will not be able to install on the microsd <- yay! this is 2017 and still we play these games 😎
    • enter bios settings and be sure that USB3 is disable (you can reenable later) and VID is enabled
    • make a handy hyper-v bootable usb or you will be out of luck 🙂

    VID is the "virtual installation disk" and contains all the drivers required for the dl380.


    • enter the bios one-time boot menu end select to boot from the USB pen
    • when the windows setup appears, choose the little link on the lower-left corner: "repair pc", then enter toolboxes and run a DOS command shell
    • use diskpart to setup partitions on the microSD: verify which disk is your microSD, I consider it here as disk 0
    list disk 
    select disk 0
    clean <- this erases the disk!!!
    convert gpt
    create partition efi size=100
    format quick fs=fat32 label="System"
    assign letter="S"
    create partition msr size=16
    create partition primary 
    format quick fs=ntfs label="Windows"
    assign letter="W"
    • from command line:
    powercfg /s 8c5e7fda-e8bf-4a96-9a85-a6e23a8c635c
    dism /Apply-Image /ImageFile:D:\install.wim /Index:1 /ApplyDir:W:\ <- MIND that D: is your USB pen letter, adjust accordingly
    • wait for the extraction of the entire OS on the microSD, then
    bcdboot W:\Windows /s S:
    • reboot, automatic, several times, just remove the USB and let the server start the normal way.

    windows will boot and ask for an admin password. mind that this installation is not localized: just use letters and numbers you are able to recognize once you will adjust your localization.

    final thoughts
    It is damned simple straightforward, when you have discovered:

    • the right combination of bios settings which correctly allows you to install
    • you have understood that Intelligent Provisioning, the HP tool for setting up bios for you, is broken, will create an unbootable NTFS efi partition and will broken your USB media.

    hope this will save time to someone else!


    PS: used guides: partitioning, installation

  • Thanks!

  • From a high level it reads simpler than what had to be done with Server 2012 R2.

    Still not sure I would use it in production though.