FAQ: Windows Server 2016 and Hyper-V Integration Services

I’m frequently receiving questions about what’s wrong with Windows Server 2016 and how to manage Hyper-V IS. I’d like to discuss it in a FAQ manner. If your question is not answered, just feel free to leave a comment

Where is the integration services setup disk (VmGuest.iso)?

All of us remember times when we had to insert ISO which was available on Hyper-V host , run it on each VMs and check it’s version from time to time for keeping them up-to-date (yes, vmguest.iso was updated via Windows Update).

The process of Hyper-V IS upgrading has been changed since Windows Server 2016. Now VMs get IS updates directly from Windows Update (WU). ISO is not included and it’s not needed anymore.

It’s completely true if you have new OS inside VMs (Windows 2012 R2/Windows 8.1 and later). Hyper-V IS automatically get updates from WU in these OSes. No actions required.

We have another picture for older OSes (Windows Server 2012/Windows 8 and older). For such OSes, you need to verify that Data Exchange Service (DES) is turned on and running.

DES provides shared registry values (HostSystemOSMajor and HostSystemOSMinor under the hive HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Virtual Machine\Guest\Parameters) between host and VMs for determining IS applicability. These values should be existed in VM in order to get IS updates from WU. If DES has never been enabled on VMs – IS won’t be provided.


Hack: you can edit/add these parameters and set values manually (of course, it’s unsupported)

Example of outdated IS in VM with WS2012R2 on WS2016 host (DES provided values from VM, compared them with host’s and they are not the same):


Linux Guests? Built-In or  Linux Integration Services are required

Unsupported Windows Server 2003? Integration services setup disk is required. Can be copied from WS2012R2 (download link is below). Better option: plan migration to newer OS

How to install IS manually?

Use this KB if DES can’t be enabled or WU is unavailable:

Hyper-V integration components update for Windows virtual machines that are running on a Windows 10 or Windows Server 2016-based host (IS  ver. 6.3.9600.17903) + IS update for Windows Server Guest OSes (IS ver. 6.3.9600.18080).

Note: To install this update, you must have April 2014, update rollup for Windows RT 8.1, Windows 8.1, and Windows Server 2012 R2 (2919355) installed in Windows 8.1. Or, install Service Pack 1 for Windows 7.

To install IS (CAB-file) use PowerShell:

Add-WindowsPackage -PackagePath pathtocab -Online

If you want to do offline VM servicing : read guide from Sarah Cooley

TIP: IS with later version is available from uploaded VMGuest.iso below (use it to simplify overall process)

Where can I find ISO if I haven’t got Windows Server 2012 R2 installed?

I’ve uploaded Hyper-V Integrations Services ISO for you. It was taken from Windows Server 2012 R2 (up-to-date, 02/20/17 . IS version: 6.3.9600.18398). You can use this ISO to install Integration Services in “prehistoric” guest OSes (but again..migration to newer OS is better option for such VMs) on Windows Server 2016 or with hosts running on Windows 2012 R2/Windows 8.0/8.1 Download link for VMGuest.ISO

I’m querying Integration Services version from PowerShell but it shows me 0 for all VMs. What’s wrong?

I’ve provided example of outdated IS in a VM SQL01 above. Cluster validation report generates a warning. PowerShell shows 0 in IntegrationServicesVersion

By default, PowerShell loads Hyper-V module with version 2. I tried to remove that module, import one with 1.1 version and query again IS versions. In that case, I received actual IS versions and  “Update required”  in IntegrationServicesState. It seems like something wrong with Hyper-V 2.0 module. Waiting for official fixes or confirmations.


Update: this behavior is normal. VM support is based on the having critical updates and reporting IS version is no longer needed.

5 thoughts on “FAQ: Windows Server 2016 and Hyper-V Integration Services”

    1. They are also covered here. Please read carefully “Windows Server 2012/Windows 8 and older). For such OSes, you need to verify that Data Exchange Service (DES) is turned on and running”. If guest OS is unsupported (WS2003, for instance) on WS2016 you should use IC from previous WS at least.

  1. Hi,
    So… Rolling cluster upgrade from 2012R2 to 2016 – VM Integration Tools were on the highest 6.3.960.18398 at the time. Cluster functional level upgraded from 8 to 9 once the last 2012 host removed, VMs upgraded to Version 8.
    From this point on, there must still be some form of version control for the Integration tools within the guest? It states it’s managed by Windows Update – to be clear, is that on the Guest OS or the host?
    Is it safe to assume that with the host properly patched, and the VM on version 9 – that all of the functionality is being delivered to the VM or is there still some background dependency on Integration tools within the guest?

    1. Hi, Eliot!

      You are asking the right questions.

      Well, the main goal was to simplify overall management tasks. Actually, we don’t need to care about IS versions anymore (ideally, of course, If we have supported OSes inside and WU works on them). Therefore IS version indicator has also been removed from cluadmin.msc and hyper-v manager. If you’d like to manage and frequently check IS versions – one simple workaround: basic PS script that uses Hyper-V 1.1 PS module to output IS versions or Test-Cluster cmdlet that shows them “correctly” as well. There are no official tools for IS version check yet (in fact, we can retrieve some useful data via WU APIs and etc).

      WU get updates from VM via public update catalog or WSUS, for example. So, you need to just verify that required connection from VMs to updates sources established. If they are offline, do manual installation.

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