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I have a Windows 2008 DVD in my Drive. The server is co-located somewhere else, I cannot physically access it. I need to keep the CD in the Drive in case I need the OS (for some reason)

Everytime I reboot I get stuck...meaning it never boots back up even though it is Powered On. I am pointing my finger at the fact that it might be stuck at the "Press any key to boot from CD" or at something waiting for a keyboard entry....though I am not sure what would stop it.

Since the only way I access it is vis Remote Desktop Connection, I cant tell where its getting stuck.

Any ideas on how to disable this...or any ideas on where its getting stuck?

Could it be that while rebooting I am trying to access RDC and it thinks that I pressed a key?

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5 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

First, I would convert the DVD to an ISO image, then use ISO mounting tools to mount the iso if I needed it. Second, I imagine that you call someone to finish the boot up process when your server doesn't come back up. What do they say about where it is in the boot up process when you call? Third, I've had servers fail to come back up when they had the option set in the BIOS to boot from USB key before the HDD, and I had an external drive plugged in via USB. Just some things to check....

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well good point since, during the last install we did install from DVD, so the Admin at the datacenter could have placed the BIOS in boot from CD mode. I will check that. –  DevCompany Sep 14 '10 at 14:38
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If it is indeed booting from the CD, the only way to change that is usually from BIOS. Maybe you can just copy the CD contents to the local hard drive and then [remotely] eject the CD?

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Instead of copying the contents you could also create an ISO from the disk, or download the ISO from Microsoft. Use one of the many ISO mounter tools. I can't think of any instance where I have needed the physical CD, other then at the initial install. –  Zoredache Sep 13 '10 at 20:16
    
good idea...thank you –  DevCompany Sep 14 '10 at 14:34
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When you say RDC, do you actually mean the Microsoft remote desktop tool or another remote control tool?

The microsoft remote desktop/terminal server system only works when windows is fully started, so this can't be the cause of any problem/spurious keypress during boot.

For a co-located server like this you really need something like the HP ilo or Dell DRAC which gives you full management and remote view/control of the whole boot process... this would make it easy to enter the bios and turn off booting from the cd drive normally and then switch it back on when you need it. And as others have said then creating an .iso image and storing it on the computer might be a better solution anyway, for most scenarios that don't involve a bare-metal rebuild.

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Yes, I did mean Microsoft Remote Desktop...Ok youre right it only does start once Windows is Started. ok I will also look into ilo or DRAC, if they are cost effective for small business. :) – DevCompany 0 secs ago –  DevCompany Sep 14 '10 at 14:36
    
+1 for ilo or Drac, or any IP KVM. "Remote hands" can also be provided by some hosters. –  petrus Jun 21 '11 at 17:33
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Is there a reason it has to be via CD? Could you switch it to dual-boot?

Adjust the "Default operating system" while in the currently loaded system? using a tool like http://neosmart.net/dl.php?id=11

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Why are you keeping the DVD in the drive at all?

With Windows Server 2008 (actually, with any Windows from Vista onwards), the installation media is never asked for once the system has been installed; if you need to add/remove roles or features, all the required files are already present on your system drive.

You can't solve your booting issues without actually accessing the system BIOS (which can only be done from the server's console or from a low-level management tool like ILO, DRAC, etc.), but you can safely remove the DVD from the drive; you are not going to need it anymore, once the system is up and running.

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