Powershell remoting to Windows 2003 from Server 2012 R2 or Windows 8.1

With Windows Server 2003 end of life coming up in July 14, 2015, many organizations are busy trying to migrate from Server 2003 to Server 2012 R2. Some try to do in-place migration to Server 2008 R2 then another in-place migration to server 2012 R2. I don’t think this is good idea. It inherits all the issues from the old 2003 system, and I’m sure there are many. This post goes over Powershell remoting into Windows 2003 servers which is first step in many automation/migration processes.

Install Powershell 2 on Server 2003

Download and install PS2 for Server 2003 x86 or x64 version. This is part of Windows Management Framework (Windows PowerShell 2.0, WinRM 2.0, and BITS 4.0)

Create shortcut to PS2 on Server 2003



Make sure WinRM and WinMgmt services are running

In the GUI Computer Management under Services and applications/services or using Powershell:

Get-Service -Name Win*


Make sure the following 2 services are running and startup is set to ‘automatic’

  • WinMgmt (Windows Management Instrumentation)
  • WinRM (Windows Remote Management)

Enable Powershell Remoting on Server 2003

In Powershell run

Enable-PSRemoting -Force -Verbose


That’s it on the Server 2003 side.

Test connectivity

On a Server 2012 R2 or Windows 8.1 workstation with RSAT installed, which is typically running Powershell 4, add the Server 2003 computer to the trusted hosts list if need be. This is often needed if the managing machine and the managed server are not in the same domain:

winrm s winrm/config/client "@{TrustedHosts=""My2003Server""}"

W2k3-004Finally, use a cmdlet like Enter-PSSession to test connectivity:

Enter-PSSession -ComputerName


You can now execute commands on the remote Windows 2003 computer from your Server 2012 R2 or Windows 8.1 management station.

For more information see Secrets of Powershell Remoting ebook by Dave Jones, Tobias Weltner, Dave Wyatt, and Aleksandar Nikolic



4 responses

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