I am trying to install the RDS role on an extremely generic Windows 2012R2 server. No matter how I do it (say using the Add Roles and Features Wizard), the install fails with the following error message:

Session Collection

    Unable to create the session collection.

A screen shot can be found here: http://imgur.com/RXyLhNQ

This machine is a collocated Dell Poweredge R730 with 256GB RAM and 2 Xeon E5-2680 v3 processors (16 cores total).

After the install fails, Server Manager shows that the Remote Desktop Services role has been installed by providing a panel for it, but if you click on the panel and select overview you get this message:

A Remote Desktop Services deployment does not exist in the server pool.
To create a deployment, run the Add Roles and Features Wizard and select
the Remote Desktop Services installation option.

If I try the same install, using exactly the same Windows 2012 Server ISO file on a cobbled together i5 desktop in my office and following exactly the same installation steps the install succeeds without a problem.

I'm clueless as to why this is happening. The server has 185GB of RAID 1 SSD disk (should be enough, the desktop has a 225GB disk). I've tried adding the role before applying patches, after applying patches, using PowerShell from a remote Windows 2012 server, etc., and nothing seems to work. I'm installing all the RDS roles on a single machine as per a dozen tutorials on the web, so am pretty sure I'm following the installation steps properly; in any case, the install works on the desktop in my office.

Also, I can't find anything of use in the Windows Event log files.

I'm starting to wonder if Microsoft has some kind of hook which prevents the RDS role from being installed on a machine with too much RAM or too man cores.

  • Sounds like a validation step is failing. Anything of note in event logs? – blaughw Sep 21 '15 at 20:30
  • Nothing other than this cryptic entry: RD Connection Broker Configuration Failed on CNS-SRV-WINCOMPUTE.AUSTIN.UTEXAS.EDU With Error: The RD Connection Broker cannot be joined to the RD Management server. ~ – pgoetz Sep 21 '15 at 20:56

So, it turns out that my problem must have been a hardware problem. In this case we had an exactly identical machine, purchased on the same day (i.e. so everything about the machines is identical right down to the firmware revision). Following exactly the same steps I was able to successfully install RDS on the other machine.

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