Now that Windows Server 2008 R2 is officially RTM (released to manufacturer), I will doing a series of posts dedicated to new things or changes in R2 as they relate to either failover clustering or SQL Server.

While I was writing Pro SQL Server 2008 Failover Clustering, I used a bit of both Beta 1 and RC of Windows Server 2008 R2. I documented as much as I could given time constraints and the fact that the product was not final. As much as it would have been nice to publish the book after R2 was released, it just wasn’t possible.

One change which I did not notice when writing, but did as soon as I installed Windows Server 2008 R2, was that ServerManagerCmd.exe (the command line version of Server Manager) is depreceiated in Windows Server 2008 R2. I saw this message when I ran it:

Server Manager command line warning

I document how to ServerManagerCmd.exe it in the book, and you can still use it with R2, but after R2, you will have to use the PowerShell cmdlet Add-WindowsFeature to do the same functionality.

To get a full list of the features that can be added, you must first start PowerShell (Start–>Administrative Tools–>Windows PowerShell Modules). At the PS prompt, enter Get-WindowsFeature | more (you can also pipe the output to a file if you really want). You will then see a list of everything that can be added to the server. You will be using the value found in the Name column. See below for sample output.

Running Get-WindowsFeature

To add a feature, enter Add-WindowsFeature <feature name>. You can add more than one at a time, but in this case, I’m only showing you how to add the failover clustering feature. To verify that the feature was added properly, re-run Get-WindowsFeature <feature name>. An ‘X’ should show up next to the feature. An example of adding and verifying failover clustering is shown below:

Adding the Failover Clustering feature