Create Nano Server VHDX

How to create a Nano Server Image

Last week Microsoft released Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 4, which includes a lot of changes and fixes. Since I had some presentations on Nano Server in the past weeks I will quickly cover how you can create a Nano Server VHD or VHDX file.

If you download the ISO with Windows Server 2016 ISO you and mount this file you can see a folder called Nano Server. In this folder you can find the NanoServer.wim file and some PowerShell scripts as well as a folder called Packages, which includes the features, roles, driver and agents for Nano Server.

I usually copy all the PowerShell scripts (and the new module) to C:\NanoServer, even if you don’t have to, but it makes it easier for me.

Nano Server on Windows Server 2016

If you have a look at the Packages folder you can find all the available packages for Nano Server:

Nano Server Packages

Now to create a new Nano Server VHD file you can use the following steps:

First go to the directory where you stored the PowerShell files, for me this would be C:\NanoServer

Import the PowerShell Module and use the command to create a new Nano Server Image

Create Nano Server VHDX

This will create a new Nano Server Image including the VM Guest drivers and nothing more. The D:\ drive still is the Windows Server Image (ISO), the Base folder is used to mount and create the temporary files and the TargetPath is where you can find the finished VHDX file. You can now create a new Virtual Machine using this VHD file.

Nano Server Hyper-V Console

Of course you can also create Nano Server including other roles:

Nano Server Container Host:

Nano Server for Apps and using a  fix IP Address and Computername

If you want to try Nano Server running in Microsoft Azure, you can also do this:

Nano Server on Azure