I recently purchased some software which will only run on the 64bit version of Windows, so I need to do a clean install of the 64bit version of Server 2008. When I ran the Intel Process Utility it told me that my processor was 64bit capable, but when I boot in WinPE (no DVD drive you see) and run the R2 installer I get this error:

This version of setup.exe is not compatible with the version of Windows you're running.

Do I have to enable 64bit mode? If so, how?

This is the offical installer for Windows Server 2008 R2 64bit I'm using from the Microsoft website.



Server: HP Proliant DL380 G4, 6GB RAM, 300GB SCSI

2 Answers 2


WinPE is 32bit (by standard). If you download WAIK you can make a 64bit boot image, I remember seeing something packaged with TFTPBoot that may have been 64 bit, google it. :-)

  • Okay I'll look at 64bit WinPes. Cheers Aug 1, 2012 at 13:07
  • +1 @JakeElsley is running 32bit WinPE which can not run the 64bit Win Setup.
    – Chris S
    Aug 1, 2012 at 13:40
  • I've just downloaded WAIK and will install and see if I can create a 64bit CD :) Aug 1, 2012 at 13:49
  • @ChrisS That worked brilliantly - the servers not booting to the installation media with the 64bit version of WinPE. Just have to overcome this issue now: Setup was unable to create a new system partition or locate an existing system partition Aug 1, 2012 at 14:36
  • @JakeElsley You need the driver for what the disk controller is. Download the driver for any 64-bit version of Windows from HP's support site, open it and extract it to a directory. Copy that directory to a USB Flash Drive (or network, or whatever you have). In Windows Setup there's an option to load new drivers, load, install; and Bob's your uncle. The driver can be grafted into WinPE too, but that's a lot more directions.
    – Chris S
    Aug 1, 2012 at 14:39

The HP ProLiant DL380 G4 (and G4p) were the first moves by HP to embrace the Intel EM64T 32-bit/64-bit architecture. That was ~2004. So you're working with an 8 year-old system.

I believe you can get Windows Server 2008 x64 and 2008 R2 on the server, but 2008 R2 is not officially supported by HP. Can you use a USB-attached DVD to perform the install?

You do have the option of using an HP SmartStart CD to bootstrap the Windows Server installation as well.

A short guide is here.

Long-term, it would be a good move to go toward more modern hardware. This was covered in detail in an earlier post.

  • I'm afraid I don't have an external USB DVD drive. Unfortunately I do not have the budget to upgrade the hardware. Aug 1, 2012 at 13:24
  • 2
    Do you have the budget to go buy a $50 DVD drive? Its always helpful to have a USB drive laying around for various reasons. Aug 1, 2012 at 13:26
  • We can purchase a DVD drive for the server but we would preffer to use what is availble to us right now. Aug 1, 2012 at 13:33
  • A G4 can do R2: I have one running. It was an upgrade install over 2008 though, so I'm not sure if it can be installed from scratch. You MUST upgrade the bios to the latest version though. Otherwise you will get intermittent stability problems. (The bios updates 64 bit ACPI configs to be compatible with R2, according to an HP tech.)
    – Tonny
    Aug 10, 2012 at 18:51
  • @tonny Correct. The release notes for the HP firmware state that the 2008 BIOS update to the DL380 G4 was needed in order to get past installation errors.
    – ewwhite
    Aug 10, 2012 at 18:57

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