How to Install the Exchange 2010 Management Tools on Windows 8 RTM

This is definitely unsupported so be sure to read the disclaimer on the right side of this blog before continuing. Read this blog article completely before attempting this process.

You’ve just reloaded your work computer with Windows 8 RTM that you downloaded from MSDN or TechNet and you need to install the Exchange Server 2010 Management Tools so you can manage your Exchange server without having to log into it whether it be with the GUI or with PowerShell. In this example, I run setup.exe from a copy of Exchange 2010 with Service Pack 2, clicked through a couple of screens taking all the defaults and on the following screen, select “Custom Exchange Server Installation”. Then select next:

You’ll only need the “Management Tools”:

The prerequisite checks will fail stating that Windows 8 is not supported:

You can use PowerShell or RegEdit to modify the CurrentVersion setting in the registry from 6.2 to 6.1 which tells Windows 8, you’re not really Windows 8:

You’ll need to manually enable the “IIS 6 Management Console” and “IIS 6 Metabase Compatibility” features otherwise the installation will fail at this point due to those missing. Once all of those changes have been made, the “Readiness Checks” will complete:

The installation finishes without issue:

Once the installation is complete, change the CurrentVersion setting back to 6.2. PowerShell is my tool of choice and I like problems that give me an excuse to use it.

This process circumvents a safety feature that I’m sure was put in place for a good reason so you’ve been warned. Don’t blame me when your computer crashes and burns.

Update 8/21/12
Based on the comments I’ve received on this blog, I’ve verified that there is an issue with the Exchange Management Console (GUI). You’re unable to expand the tree beyond the point shown in the following image to manage the Exchange server from Windows 8:

Based on this, the only reason to attempt this install is for the PowerShell snap-ins.



  1. Rui

    Hello Mike,

    Been there, done this, and it works!!
    The only problema is that I can’t expand the deatures on the left side of the EMC. I’m using Roll Up Update 1 for SP2. Can you help?

  2. rtracanas

    Hello Mike,

    Great post!!
    I still can’t expland the roles.
    I have Rollup Update 1 for SP2

  3. brieder

    I have the same issue (expansion of exchange objects on the left navigation pane). I’m at Rollup3 for SP2.

  4. Bill

    I have the same issue. This issue is reproducible on Windows 2012 RTM as well. If anyone figures it out, please post!

  5. Jamali (@malimal99)

    same issue, with 2010 SP2.

    anybody figure out something?

  6. Rylan

    Copy MMC Version 2 to the C Drive of your Windows 8 computer and name it admin.msc.

    Then invoke the MMC console using this batch file.

    @echo off
    set COMPLUS_Version=v2.0.50727

    The tree will then expand.

  7. Carlos

    It works!!!! Great

    Thank you

  8. Derik Palacino

    I know this is an older post, but upon trying to install the Exchange 2010 SP2 update for the management tools I had to change both the CurrentVersion to 6.1 and the CurrentProductName from “Windows 8 Pro” to “Windows 7 Pro”. Changing the version alone wasn’t enough to get past validation, but adding the name change on as well seems to do the trick.

    Thanks for a great post that pointed me in the right direction!

  9. Leif Møller

    Rylan says:

    October 4, 2012 at 07:33

    Copy MMC Version 2 to the C Drive of your Windows 8 computer and name it admin.msc.

    I can’t find a MMC version 2. Where do you get that from?
    It must be back before Windows XP sp3 ?

  10. r

    MMC Version 2 is on Windows XP and Server 2003 (not R2)… it was not made available as a redistributable, so you need to copy it from one of these machines.

  11. Patrick

    I just changed the batch a little bit, so it would work with the default Exchange directory:
    @echo off
    set COMPLUS_Version=v2.0.50727
    “C:Program FilesMicrosoftExchange ServerV14BinExchange Management Console.msc”

  12. Martin B

    It might be worth putting that this is a waste of time at the top of the guide!!!

  13. Josh Ferguson

    This works great for me on Win 8 Pro x64! I can use both EMC and EMS. Created a batch that looks like this:

    @echo off
    set COMPLUS_Version=v2.0.50727
    START “C:WindowsSystem32mmc.exe” “C:Program FilesMicrosoftExchange ServerV14BinExchange Management Console.msc”

    This is how I launch the EMC and it expands all the way just like on the server – I see Org, Server and Recipient Configuration. I see no difference in functionality just yet from that of sitting in front of the physical server.

    I did have some permissions issues where I could not see Org Config and Server Config. I resolved this by remoting into the Exchange server (single exch server environment), open EMS, grant permissions to my username (jferguson):
    Add-RoleGroupMember “Recipient Management” -Member jferguson
    Add-RoleGroupMember “Server Management” -Member jferguson

    Hope this helps…

  14. Robbie Clark

    An update Mike, since I’m currently doing this. Exchange Server 2010 Service Pack 3, which was released in February supports Windows 8.

  15. Angel Castillo

    @Robbie – If my Exchange Server 2010 is SP2, can I still install the Management Console from SP3? and would it work when managing the Exchange Server 2010 SP2 from my Windows 8 Pro running EMC SP3?


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