FrustrationHere are the three biggest hurdles in an almost impossible battle I had in trying to install Exchange on Server 2008 R2. Did I expect to turn off UAC and run in Vista compatibility mode…nope. Did expect to do twenty questions with an install on exactly what file can’t be read…no on that one as well. Even if you are not installing Exchange…read what I had to do…it may amuse you. Odysseus would be proud…

UAC Not Just for Vista Anymore

One doesn’t think that the User Account Control comes into play on a server…wrong. If you don’t have UAC set to minimums you won’t even be able to get past the prerequisites check! Here is the nasty little error you will get:

Setup failed due to insufficient permissions.  Please make sure that the current user has local administrator permissions. Error: The source was not found, but some or all event logs could not be searched.  Inaccessible logs: Security.

Search for UAC in the search bar and change accordingly.

What Missing File? Are you going to tell me? No???

Ok you have now made it to the actual install and it fails immediately on the Organization Preparation section. A winform message box comes up “File Not Found”. But it won’t tell you what that file is, where it exists or anything else even pertinent. The only clue is a flashed windows mentioning Active Directory (if you are lucky).

Looking in the logs you see this:

[WARNING] An unexpected error has occurred and debug information is being generated: The system cannot find the file specified
[10/12/2009 1:03:46 PM] [1] [ERROR] The system cannot find the file specified
[10/12/2009 1:03:46 PM] [1] [ERROR] The system cannot find the file specified

Hey Exchange Install, thanks for telling me three times! I wouldn’t have gotten the first time!

I would love to tell you that I figured this one out on my own but thanks to the magic of the internet, someone posted the solution (Installation error when installing Exchange 2007 SP1 on Windows Server 2008 R2) exactly on the same day I was searching! Here is the advice given for Server 2008 R2 (the one to run Exchange not the domain controller)  type this into PowerShell:

Import-Module Servermanager
Add-WindowsFeature RSAT-ADDS

Install Is a Dish Best Served Cold

Hey…its working its installing…oh, the last step failed! How prophetic, how ironic! It fails on MailBox Role….the very last step!:

An error occurred. The error code was 3221684229. The message was Access is denied..

So you are thinking what was missing? Was it  from my features/roles for setting up the server? Did I have a missing permission…naw I was foolish enough to not run the setup in Vista Compatibility mode. Heck what was I thinking.

Yes highlight the install and specify in the Compatibility tab as “Vista”.

If you are starting out in installing Exchange, this guide will be of use…more likely you have one of the errors mentioned above and are here. HTH.