Is there any way to install Windows Server 2003/2008 on a HP MediaSmart Server EX495?

  • Are you thinking wiping the current OS and putting Win S 2003 or 2008? – Darius Mar 23 '11 at 19:13
  • Yes, it currently has the Windows Home Server software – tomera Mar 23 '11 at 19:26

I take it there is no CD or DVD drive on that model?

Then you will either need to plug in a DVD drive into the motherboard (can't tell you how without seeing the internals), or use a USB DVD drive to boot the Windows installer DVD off.

Other than that there should be no problems installing 2k3 or 2k8,

  • Would it be possible to install it through a network? – tomera Mar 23 '11 at 19:21
  • If you're upgrading an existing operating system you could take an ISO image of the disk and mount it using something like Daemon Tools (virtual DVD drive). Can't guarantee it'd work. You're best off using a USB DVD drive. – Majenko Mar 23 '11 at 19:26
  • There is such a thing like PXE Boot. You should look into your MediSmart BIOS and see if you have that option. But then on the other hand you probably would want another server as a point of origin of the boot file. Meaning, if you have a PC that you can toss let say Virtual Box and in VB setup Server 2003 or 2008 to put the boot file there and boot you HP MediaServer from PXE Boot. I think it's possible but it will take more time then just taking USB DVD Drive and booting your HP MediaServer from it. – Darius Mar 23 '11 at 19:49
  • @Darius you'd need a windows server and the windows network installation software running on it (forget what it's called now) – Majenko Mar 23 '11 at 19:50
  • Hence I have updated my comment :) – Darius Mar 23 '11 at 19:53

You will need a copy of the Windows Server 2008 Disk (and a license), a USB drive and the following guide http://jesscoburn.com/archives/2007/10/15/installing-windows-2008-via-usb-thumbdrive/

Simply follow the steps in the guide and you will have a bootable USB drive that you can use to install Windows Server 2008 onto.

Alternatively as Matt has said you could just use an External USB DVD drive. It is simpler but you may not have one around.

The documentation at www.mediasmarthome.com/ says that SQL Server 2008 can be installed so from that I'm taking it as red that Standard 2008 server can be.
But I would advise to back up your system before doing anything so you can recover your data and servers functionality in event of a failure.


See page 6 for supported Operating Systems, supported means what HP will give support for on that hardware, other OS's may work also, just don't call HP for help when you have problems with an unsupported OS. I don't see any reason Server 2008 would not install and run just fine.




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  • The supported OSes refer to computers connecting to the MediaSmart server. – Thecal714 Aug 27 '12 at 7:22

I'm thinking no, as there is no way to tell it where to boot from. The recovery method for reinstalling WHS is the only install method I am familiar with.

I suppose there could be some way to force a Server 2k3/2k8 image on there, but I have never seen or heard of it being done.

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