Written by Cosmos Darwin, Senior PM at Microsoft. Follow him on Twitter @cosmosdarwin.
At Microsoft Ignite 2019, we introduced Windows Admin Center version 1910 and a new Cluster Creation extension. Using this extension, you can deploy hyperconverged infrastructure from two or more suitable Windows Servers. The multi-stage workflow guides you through installing features, configuring networking, creating the cluster, and enabling Storage Spaces Direct. This reduces what used to take hours of sweat, tears, and PowerShell into an experience that’s much more approachable.
The Cluster Creation extension is available in Preview so you can try it early. Throughout the Preview, the extension will be updated through the Windows Admin Center extension feed so that our engineering team can deliver features and fixes rapidly based on your feedback.
Today, we’re pleased to announce the first such update – version 1.1.
Version 1.1 of the Cluster Creation extension is available right now. It takes just a few seconds to install from within Windows Admin Center. If you don't see a toast notification, go to Settings > Extensions > Installed extensions and find the "Cluster Creation (Preview)" extension.
What's new in version 1.1
You can now go back to change which type of cluster you chose to deploy
Improved error handling: you will now see the full error message text from PowerShell if something doesn’t work
Improved the visual styling of tables, progress bars, and other UI elements across every step of the workflow
Fixed an issue where servers without certain PowerShell modules showed as “Not found” in step 1.3
Improved step 1.4 to show which Windows features are installed or will be installed
Fixed an issue with credentials that prevented network adapters from being found in step 2.1
Fixed an issue where 100 Mbps network adapters were mistakenly listed as 100 Gbps in step 2.1
Fixed an issue that could cause step 2.2, step 2.3, or step 2.4 to get stuck (spinning dots indefinitely)
Improved input validation in step 2.3 to catch invalid VLAN ID values: the acceptable range is 0 to 4096
Added check in step 3.2 to catch when the proposed cluster name is already in use
Fixed an issue where the cluster validation report was incorrectly formatted in Microsoft Edge
Added step 4.3 to validate storage (enabling Storage Spaces Direct is now step 4.4)
These changes are inspired by your feedback, so please keep it coming! Special thanks to Evan, Ravikanth, Sumit, Samuel, Jan-Tore, Jaromir, Sean, Fabiano, Rizwan, Anthony, Ben, Jeff, and everyone else who helped shape version 1.1. You can expect more updates soon as development continues toward general availability sometime next year.