SQL Core on Hyper-V from ISO

Jan 31, 2014 at 9:13 PM
BoxStarter seems to be similar to parts of Powershell DSC so I am asking here for advice before I even get started on my project, hoping to find out what portions of needed functionality BoxStarter already provides.

I am looking for a Vagrant equivalent that can auto-magically setup from ISO the latest versions of SQL Server on Windows Server Core virtualized in Hyper-V for entirely-off-domain/autonomous/anonymous/self-contained automated testing of ASP.NET applications, with all setup-related authentication entirely certificate-driven from a self-signed cert generated on the Hyper-V host. Ideally it will also work with 2008R2 stuff.

To get started I am planning on configuring a pair of unattended installations (for the OS and SQL Server) and using DSC to setup IIS deployments. Some day I'd like to do things like nLite did (completely removing Windows features) to minimize footprint; and strip down things like user/account permissions, file system permissions, and firewall rules to the bare minimums in a way that would break anything attempting something unexpected.

Thanks in advance for your time!
Feb 1, 2014 at 7:28 AM
Definitely an interesting scenario! I honestly have not worked much yet with DSC. It looks very cool and I would like to eventually offer integrating some of it into Boxstarter packages. The core Boxstarter functionality is intended to be PS v2 compatible. So the advantage of Boxstarter is being able to use it on older OS versions without first having to upgrade to the Windows Management Framework v4, which in some environments can break alot of existing scripts.

Boxstarter is very Vagrant-like. if you run it on the host, you can point it at any VM and it will ensure that PS Remoting is setup and then it will connect to the box and install your package. Not sure how familiar you are with Chocolatey but if it can be done in powershell, a chocolatey package should be able t oaccomplish whatever setup you are trying to get done.

Have a look at the docs on the Boxstarter.org site and if you have questions, please bring them up.