Where’s the RSAT download for Windows 7 x64?

So you want to install the Remote Server Administration tools for Windows 7, to remotely manage your Server 2008/2003 systems. You go to the Microsoft Download Center and find the RSAT download (note that you must have Windows 7 Pro or above, which shouldn’t be a problem in a business environment). You scroll down to the file download links and see two choices, one called x86fre and the other called amd64fre. Hmmm. You don’t have an AMD processor; your system is an Intel based 64 bit one. Well, confusing as it might seem, the one that seems to reference AMD is still the correct one. It would have been nice if they had made a note to that effect.

But hey, no big deal. You download it and install it – or at least, you thought you did. The installation finishes and you now have something in your All Programs | Administrative Tools menu that says “Remote Server Administration Tools.” But when you click it, it only opens up the Help file. Where are the tools themselves?  Do they run at the command line only? Nope – the secret is that you now have to turn them on as Windows features. Go to Control Panel | Programs and Features, and select “Turn Windows features on or off” in the left pane. There they are: Remote Server Administration Tools. You want them all, so you click the top level checkbox, which is filled in blue. Then you click OK, and wait. It finishes and you go back to the Administrative Tools menu – but there’s still nothing there, except that Help file. Now what?

Well, it seems you have to expand the item and check every tool that you want individually, as shown below.


Okay, do that, wait again, and return to the Administrative Tools menu. At last – there they are:


I just have to wonder: does anyone ever have a real user test these things before they go out the door? It’s all very easy the second time you do it … but does the first time really have to be a scavenger hunt? At least it keeps the life of an IT pro interesting.

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