Windows 8 FAQ

22. Using Windows 8 in a Windows Domain

0. How do I add a Windows 8 PC to a domain?

Open Control Panel, System, then click on Advanced System Settings link on the left. Click on Computer Name, then the Change button. If you have Windows 8 Professional, or Enterprise edition, you can then select Domain and enter the name of your domain (standard edition users cannot join a domain). Click OK and enter a domain username and password to authorize adding the PC to the domain.

1. How do I manage users, computers and so on in Windows 8?

You need to install the Remote Server Windows Administration Tools from Microsoft Downloads for Windows 8 or Windows 8.1. This is add the tools to administer the following services in a Windows domain: Active directory, Network services such as DNS, DHCP, WINS, NLB, Terminal Services and so on. Once the patch is installed, you can add the consoles to the Administrative Tools menu buy using Control Panel, Programs, Turn Features on or off.

2. Can I manage SQL Servers on Windows 8?

A lot of companies use SQL Server for enterprise databases ranging from SQL 2000 to the new SQL 2012. These can be managed using SQL Server 2005 Management Studio or later tools which can administer SQL 2000 and SQL 2005 servers. You can manage SQL 2008 (R2) servers with the 2008 (R2) Management tools and SQL 2012 with the 2012 Management tools. Install the tools from the SQL CD.

3. Can I manage Exchange Servers on Windows 8?

You can manage Exchange 2010 on Windows 8 x64, but if you install Powershell 2.0 you can use its remote management features.
You can manage Exchange 2013 on any Windows PC using Internet Explorer to its web based Exchange Admin Center (EAC).

4. Can I deploy Group Policies?

Yes, Windows 8 has a whole new set of Group Policy Settings which can be deployed from a Windows 2008 or later domain. You can copy the new Group Policy files from the C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions to your AD Sysvol, the files are in ADMX format, a new XML format for group policy settings. More information about the settings are available in Excel Spreadsheets from here. Windows 8 GPOs can only be managed on Windows 8/2012 computers.

You can deploy printers using Group Policy with the Printer Management tools.

5. Can I use scripts in Windows 8?

Yes, you can use Visual Basic Scripts (.vbs) or Powershell scripts in Windows 8. More information is available here. If User Account Control (UAC) is enable, some scripts cannot continue unless some user intervention is required. If using a lot of these scripts, then either change UAC settings or turn it off. For management type scripts, use the new Power Shell.

6. Can I run programs written with Visual Studio on Windows 8?

Yes, most programs written using .NET Framework should work fine. Visual Studio 6 programs should be upgraded to .NET to ensure they run on Windows 8 machines. For example, if you open a .vbp project in Visual Studio 2010,(see issues for VS 2010) it will start the Upgrade Wizard and create a .NET project. Some additional changes may be required to the project to work such as changing drawing programs, Object/Variant types and so on.

You will need Visual Studio 2012 to write apps for the new Windows 8 user interface.
Also, you can use Visual Studio 2013 or later, for desktop for traditional windows applications.

7. File and Print Sharing with Windows Server.

Yes, it is possible to use File and Print sharing with Windows 8. Make sure the printer drivers on the server are up to date to ensure compatibility (you can do this via the Printer control panel, Server Properties (right click in printer window to get to Properties). Also, make sure Windows 8 is set to use 'Network Access: LAN Manager - Use LM and NTLM - use NTLMv2 for security if negotiated' to ensure the machines can authenticate with older Windows servers.

8. How can I run our legacy programs on Windows 8?

There are a number of techniques you can use to run legacy programs on Windows 8:
a) Use the Program Compatibility tab to force it to use older OS APIs.
b) Dual boot setup. Install the old and new Windows Operating system on the same computer.
c) Virtualisation. Run a virtual machine using VMWare Player or Workstation or VirtualBox and run the old os and application in that. If you have Windows 8 Pro or Ultimate try the new Hyper-V feature.
d) DOS applications can be run using DOSBox with MS DOS installed.
e) For web applications, I would make sure they are validated (HTML, CSS, XML etc) to ensure they render properly.
f) Update the applications where possible from the vender or update inhouse with latest Development tools.
g) Try the Windows Assessment Deployment Kit (ADK).

9. Does Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) support Windows 8?

Yes, SCCM 2012 SP1 and SP2 is compatible with Windows 8 or later.