Installing Dynamics CRM on Server 2008

I am working on installing Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 on Windows Server 2008 (using SQL Server 2008).

Installing CRM is not quite like your typical Microsoft installer, especially when installing on the ’08 servers. There are things you need to know, and do in advance to keep it from failing.

The information you need is in three places:
1. Microsoft Dynamics CRM Implementation Guide
This is a zip file containing a whole mess of project planning information and tools. “Microsoft_Dynamics_CRM_IG_Installing.doc” and “Microsoft_Dynamics_CRM_IG_Planning.doc” are the only documents you will need for installing. The planning document helps to establish the software requirements and various prerequisites.
2. Support for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 on Windows Server 2008-based computers
This explains what special steps must be taken to install CRM on Windows Server 2008.
3. Support for running Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 together with Microsoft SQL Server 2008
This explains the step to install it with SQL Server 2008.

If you meditate over the instructions in these documents, you should be able to get it installed… almost. The instructions aren’t exactly clear in a few places, so I thought I’d mention the snags I encountered. Do these things BEFORE you run the CRM installer.

1. Make sure you are running the installer as a domain user that is a local administrator on the server
2. You will need an Active Directory OU to house the CRM groups, and the user with which you are installing needs full rights to that OU (using the delegate feature)
(alternatively, you could run the installer as a Domain Administrator)
3. If you use a port other than 80 when setting up SQL Reporting Services, you will need to create a dummy site in IIS with the same port, and start it BEFORE installing CRM.
If you forget it’s no biggie though – when you get the error (“The specified path is not a metabase path.”) you can create the site and click “Retry”.
I believe you can delete the site (or at least stop it) after CRM is installed.
4a. Copy the contents of the installation DVD to the hard disk (and use this to perform the installation, not the CD).
4b. Disable Internet Explorer Enhanced Security.
4c. Increase the Internet Explorer Cache size to 1024MB. (It defaults to 50MB).
When you install CRM, you MUST allow it to download updated setup files. If you do not make these changes, the installation will fail with the following error:
“Action Microsoft.Crm.Setup.Server.MsiInstallServerAction failed.
This update package could not be opened. Verify that the update package exists and that you can access it, or contact the application vendor to verify that this is a valid Windows Installer update package”
This is because the update file is larger than the default IE cache size of 50MB, and gets deleted right after being downloaded. The three parts of step 4 ensure that this will not happen.
You can, of course, change the IE settings back after the install is complete.

Finally, during the install, make sure you select “Network Service” and not a domain user for the security account.

This is all I can think of. The documentation is pretty thorough, albeit a bit verbose.

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