How To Install Windows Home Server 2011 (Vail)

Installing Windows Home Server 2011 can be slightly tricky as it is quite distinct in nature as compared to other Microsoft based operating systems. For instance, it cannot be installed unless you have at least 160GB of hard disk space available on the host machine. Make sure you check out the system specifications (given below) before installing Windows Server 2011. Below is a walkthrough of the steps involved in installing Windows Server 2011.

System Requirements

Before installing Windows Home Server 2011, it is worth checking out its system requirements. (Windows Home Server 2011 is a 64-bit only operating system and therefore will require 64-Bit hardware).

  • Processor: 1.4 GHz x64
  • RAM: 2 GB RAM (minimum)
  • Hard Disk: 160 GB (or larger) hard drive
  • Supported File System: NTFS is the only supported file system
  • Supported Networking Configuration:
  1. Server computer must be connected to a router
  2. The router works best with a UPnP ™ certified device
  3. The router works best in the 192.168.x.x subnet

In case you have any confusions about the above, feel free to leave a comment or contact me at and I will answer back as soon as possible. Below are the details for the installation procedure.

After you boot server 2011( from a media device such as a DVD ROM or USB), you will see the Windows boot screen.


After a while you will be redirected to the installation wizard. Select New Installation to continue. You can always use this method to also repair your home server, in such a case you will require selecting the Repair option.

step 1

Check the checkbox which says: “I understand that if I click install all files and folders on my primary hard drive will be deleted” and click Install to continue.

step 2

This will start the installation process (The system will restart several times before the installation is complete).

step 3

After the regular installation procedure is complete,  select a country/region, time, currency, keyboard layout and click Next to Continue.

step 4

The following prompt will display configuration options for date and time settings (verification). You can either hit Next directly or click on “Change system date and time settings” to edit time zone settings.

step 5

Accept the terms and conditions, enter a server name and password.

step 6

The last prompt in this wizard will ask you to either check for Windows update immediately or later on. After this step, your configurations will begin to take effect (which might take up to 30 minutes depending upon your hardware and internet connection if you choose to obtain updates). The system will restart several times before the installation is completed.

step 7

After the configurations are complete, you will be able to use your Windows Home Server 2011.

step 8