I just updated my Windows Server code name Vail to the new date of March 15, 2011. Thank you to Microsoft for saving me some frustration at the last minute and giving us a solution to continue beta testing. Read on to follow this quick walk-through with screen captures and instructions.
So, here is the information that Microsoft has just released in order to get around the problem:
The beta is built on an evaluation copy of Windows Server 2008 R2, where the eval expiry is hard coded during beta development (and as such cannot be easily changed). However working with our engineering team, there is now a workaround using Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 RC. This will extend the expiry to mid-March.
To extend the expiry, please follow the directions below:
STEP ONE – Install SP1 (multiple steps within)
Install WS08 R2 SP1 RC on the server from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?familyId=c3202ce6-4056-4059-8a1b-3a9b77cdfdda&hash=2SduI20oa3rGcMvoU%2bPV1TVHUik%2f3CNeLRmMuOcJXzz13kgszkD2VWTIpb%2bAS0in9K12Sc14FpC3sdT4PNXCUw%3d%3d
Once you click on the link, click Continue. You can download this file to your PC and do not need to be on your Vail machine at this point in the process.
Once the validation is complete you can download the file. It should be the first and the largest file. You do not need the other files and just download the one shown below.
Once you download the file you should burn it to a DVD. It is faster to just burn a DVD so I would not recommend trying any other approach.
Put the DVD in the Vail machine, KVM or Remote Desktop in to Vail, open the DVD and run Setup.