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While 'resting between engagements', I took the opportunity to install and configure a Solution Manager system on a cloud host local to Australia.  The main reason was for a demojam entry, but it's always good to keep my skills up to date.  The target system provided was a Windows 2008 R2 system.

Windows   Server 2003 R2 and Windows Server 2003 only have functional differences; using the same SAP kernel version, the same service packs, and  the same hot fixes and security fixes.  By contrast, going from Windows Server 2008 to Windows Server 2008 R2 requires an updated kernel (see SAP note 1383873 - Windows Server 2008 R2 Support).  Now, I could say I was using 2008 R2 for all the right reasons; for example, according to Frequently Asked Questions - SAP on Windows Server 2008 R2:

The main benefits of Windows 2008 R2 are

  • Scalability
    Windows Server 2008 R2 supports up to 256 logical processors.
  • Improved virtualization features
    On Hyper-V in Windows Server  2008 R2, the amount of cores supported by the hypervisor (up to 32) has  been enhanced. Another enhancement is Live Migration support by the  implementation of Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV). Virtual Machines can be  migrated without service interruption between the cluster members.
  • Power usage
    Windows Server 2008 R2 reduces processor power  consumption in server computers with multi-core processors using a  feature known as Core Parking. Core Parking allows Windows Server 2008  R2 to consolidate processing onto the minimum number of required  processor cores, and suspends inactive processor cores. The advantage of  Core Parking over traditional servers is 10-15 % energy saving for the  same workload.

For a complete list of features, see:
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2008/en/us/overview.aspx

However the real reason was that Windows 2008 R2 was already installed on the server I was using.  This became a bit of an challenge, as the Install Kit I used wasn't actually for 2008 R2 !!.  I found OSS Note 1383873 fairly quickly, but even after installing the appropriate kernel as suggested,  sapstartsrv.exe (used by the SAPxxx_NN service) would not start correctly.  I discovered via google that I needed to install an extra Microsoft c-runtime (vcredist) to run the  new SAP kernel.

The reason for posting this as a blog (I'll also add it to the wiki) is that while I've since found out that this is 'general knowledge', it wasn't described in OSS Nnote 1383873 - Windows Server 2008 R2 Support , and in fact, the only reference I found to my symptom was in one line in 1494740- SAP system migration from Windows 2003 to 2008 (R2) 64-bit AFTER I chased the error down through Google.

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