Using WSEE to fix upgrade of 2016 to 2019



We had a client server that was upgraded from 2016 Server Standard (Essential Experience installed) to 2019 Server Standard. After the upgrade and after logging in there was no shell. No Start Menu and no task bar. When installing 2019 Desktop Experience was chosen. There is no option to install Desktop Experience or Essentials.

I realize when using WSEE it’s recommended to do a clean install of 2019. I’m just wondering if it would be possible to run it the servers current state and hope if fixes the OS. There may be other issues obviously and we are prepared to do a bare metal restore of the Server.

If you think there’s a decent chance to fix the state of the Server, I will go ahead and purchase one of your products so I can get a password to download WSEE.

Kindest Regards,

Fred Smith

Carolina IT Services

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Best Answer

I’m not sure how your upgrade from 2016 to 2019 was performed, but if you did an in-place upgrade, then the user interface for Windows Server itself (i.e. the Task Bar, Start Menu, etc.) should indeed have been preserved during the upgrade process (although the Windows Server Essentials Experience server role would definitely get removed since it’s no longer available in Windows Server 2019 or later). However, if a domain migration was performed, then I assume that whoever did the initial Windows Server 2019 install simply didn’t include the “Desktop Experience” portion of Windows Server 2019 (which contains the Windows Server user interface). I’ve never installed Windows Server without Desktop Experience, but I assume that you should just be able to do a quick Internet search and find instructions on how to add the Desktop Experience to it.

As for getting the Windows Server Essentials Experience (WSEE) back on Windows Server 2019, all you would need to do is run our WSEE Installer on it (which would add all the “Essentials” bits from Windows Server 2016 Essentials onto the 2019 server for you).

Best of luck.

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