VMware 4.x and Server 2012/Windows 8 HAL_Initialisation_Error

One of our engineers found an issue with VMware 4.x and Server 2012 today, basically it gives you a HAL_Initialisation_Error when attempting to install.

From the Microsoft Support Page regarding this –


When installing Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, or booting using Windows PE 4.0 on a VMware 4.x virtual machine running a Windows operating system you may encounter the following error:

Your PC ran into a problem and needs to restart.  We’re just colleting some error info, and then we’ll restart for you. (0% complete)

If you would like to know more, you can search online later for this error:  HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAILED

Note: If you attempt to boot the x86 version of Windows PE 4.0 the system will hang.

The cause is as below;

VMware 4.x does not support Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012 as guest operating system. VMware 4.x also does not support an Offline P2V of a virtual machine running a windows operating system when using System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 SP1 because this version of SCVMM uses WinPE 4.0 when executing the Offline P2V process.

The resolution is to update your VMware environment to 5.1 or above.

Server 2012 – “Your current security settings do not allow this file to be downloaded”

Hi all,

As usual when installing a new 2012 server the security settings for IE are extremely high. On occasion you may find that you are unable to download files, below is the procedure for allowing downloads.

a.    Open Internet Explorer.
b.    Click Tools and then options.
c.    Click on the security tab.
d.    Select the Internet Zone.
e.    Click on the Custom Level Button and then scroll down to Download.
f.     Make sure to enable File download.
g.    Click Apply and Ok
h.    Restart Internet Explorer and check if that helps
This should resolve the issue, any further problems please comment and I’ll see what I can do for you 🙂
Kind Regards

Hardware Requirements for Installing Windows Server 2012

Hardware requirements define the absolute minimum required to run the server software. The actual hardware requirements depend on the services that the server is hosting, the load on the server, and how responsive you want the server to be.

The services and features of each role put a unique load on network, disk, I/O, processor, and memory resources.

Virtualised deployments of Windows Server 2012 must match the same hardware specifications as required for physical deployments. Windows Server 2012 is supported on Hyper-V Server 2012 and certain third-party virtualisation platforms.

The minimum hardware requirements for Windows Server 2012 are shown in the following list;

Processor Architecture – 64 bit

Processor Speed – 1.4GHZ

Memory (RAM) – 512MB

Hard Disk Drive Space – 32GB


Microsoft Exam Share

Many thanks to Jon Prince for the following information.

I just thought I’d share some of the resources which I’ve recently found helpful in studying for the 410 exam.

The “Born To Learn” site was quite good as it has a “Prep resources by objective” which includes video’s, TechNet links and Labs.



410 – http://borntolearn.mslearn.net/certification/server/w/wiki/491.410-installing-and-configuring-windows-server-2012.aspx#fbid=Mr_NA97vY88

411 – http://borntolearn.mslearn.net/certification/server/w/wiki/492.411-administering-windows-server-2012.aspx

412 – http://borntolearn.mslearn.net/certification/server/w/wiki/493.412-configuring-advanced-windows-server-2012-services.aspx#fbid=Nd1uXD8BpPW


MCSE: Server

413 – http://borntolearn.mslearn.net/certification/server/w/wiki/496.413-designing-and-implementing-a-server-infrastructure.aspx

414 – http://borntolearn.mslearn.net/certification/server/w/wiki/497.414-implementing-an-advanced-server-infrastructure.aspx


The following YouTube channel was also of help: http://www.youtube.com/user/microsoftlearning

There is a playlist featuring Ed Liberman and Cynthia Wang who review 410, 411 and 412:  http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLahhVEj9XNTfm9Cn9SfTMSazXUasdkwFw

Or you can try here: http://borntolearn.mslearn.net/mcsa90/#fbid=Mr_NA97vY88 which has vids and links to forums.


There is also an overview of loads of Server 2012 stuff on the MVA site: http://www.microsoftvirtualacademy.com/


If you ever need any assistance please call Comms Group UK Ltd on 0844 848 8144

Server 2012 Terminal Server License Server – Connection issue

There is a known issue for a server 2012 with an instance of RDS license server installed, but not allowing connection to a client.

The error message when trying to connect comes up with something like the following –


A look through the event viewer gave an event relating to the license server expiring its grace period even though it was fully licensed.


This is an issue Microsoft are aware of but as of yet have not realeased a hot fix.

If you come across this take a look at the following key in the registry (of the terminal server license machine)

HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\RCM

If a key called ‘Grace Period’ is present, this means the license service has not correctly removed this entry which will force the server to always run in unlicensed mode.

Simply delete the Grace Period key (obviously make a backup beforehand)

You may need to give permission to the admin account you are logged in as in order to delete the key.

The license server will then need rebooting but should allow the connections through after this.

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