In my last post I blogged about the new SharePoint 2013 features. Today I will show you how to install SharePoint 2013.
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There are two ways to upgrade from SharePoint 2010 to SharePoint 2013: In-place upgrade and the database-attach upgrade. We will be using the database-attach method as the in-place upgrade is not supported by Microsoft. In this method, you install a completely new farm and then upgrade the databases with that farm.

Step 1 – Minimum requirements

The first thing we need to look at when upgrading any application is their requirements. On January 29th, 2013, Microsoft updated the minimum requirements for the SharePoint production environment from 8GB to 12GB.

Version CPU RAM Disk Space
2010 – Small 64-bit, 4 Cores 8GB 80GB+
2010 – Medium 64-bit, 8 Cores 16GB 80GB+
2013 – Small 64-bit, 4 Cores 12GB 80GB+
2013 – Medium 64-bit, 8 Cores 16GB 80GB+

If you are going to be installing SharePoint in a virtual environment, these guidelines are not a big deal as you can just add resources as they’re needed. In a traditional environment, these requirements are more important. A good rule of thumb is to double the minimum requirements for your specific environment and purchase hardware that can be easily upgraded by added extra processors and RAM.

Step 2 – Software prerequisites

The software prerequisites are just that: required software to support running SharePoint 2013. To get started installing this software, the auto run menu has a quick link to perform this task. Of course you must be connected to the internet in order for the software to be downloaded. Click on the Install software prerequisites link in the auto run menu.

SharePoint 2013 - Install Software Prerequisites

Install Software Prerequisites

The dialogue box that pops up informs us of what software will be installed. Click the Next > button.

SharePoint 2013 Products Preparation Tool

SharePoint 2013 Products Preparation Tool

The next window is the license agreement for the aforementioned software. Read the EULA, and if you accept, tick the I accept the terms of the License Agreement(s) box and click the Next > button.

SharePoint 2013 Produts Preperation Tool - License Agreement

License Agreement(s)

The wizard will then go through the process of downloading and installing the prerequisites.

SharePoint 2013 Products Preperation Tool - Now Installing Prerequisites

 Now Installing Prerequisites

After several minutes the prerequisite installation will be complete and the server will have to be restarted. Click the Finish button.

SharePoint 2013 Products Preperation Tool - Restart your system

Restart system

After the reboot when you log in, the install will automatically start again to complete the installation of any prerequisites needed.

SharePoint 2013 Products Preperation Tool - Now Installing Prerequisites 2

Now Installing Prerequisites

Again, you will presented with the Your system needs to restart…window after this step has completed. Click the Finish button to restart the server again.

SharePoint 2013 Products Preperation Tool - Restart your system 2

Restart system

It is always recommended that Windows Update be ran after installing any Microsoft software. Obviously this is dependent on your environment whether updates are ran against actual Windows Update, your WSUS server, or at all. Install any updates and move on to step three.

Step 3 – Install SharePoint 2013

Now that the prerequisites and any updates have been installed, we can move on to the actual installation of SharePoint 2013. Open the auto run menu again and click the Install SharePoint Server link.

SharePoint 2013 - Install SharePoint Server

Install SharePoint Server

The first dialogue box that pops up will be the window requesting your product installation key. Enter it and click Continue to verify the key.

SharePoint 2013 - Enter Product Key

Enter Product Key

We are again presented with a EULA; this time for SharePoint Server itself. Read the agreement, accept it if you agree, and then click Continue.

SharePoint 2013 - Software License Terms

Software License Terms

A prompt for the server type is on the next screen. If this were a test server or very, very small deployment, we would select the Stand-Alone server type. In order to use the database-attach method for our upgrade, we must select Complete and click Install Now.

SharePoint 2013 upgrade - Server Type

Server Type

The actual installation process has been initiated. This will take several minutes to complete as it is installing everything needed to run SharePoint 2013.

Sharepoint 2013 - Installation Progress

Installation Progress

When the installation process has completed, we are presented with the Run Configuration Wizard dialogue box. The Run the SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard now is selected by default as it is the next step in the process. Leave it checked and click the Close button.

SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard

SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard

The installation process has been completed successfully. In the next step we will configure our new server. At this point, because we still need to configure SharePoint 2013 we will not run any Windows Updates. This process will be done at the end of the Configuration Wizard.

Step 4 – Configuration Wizard

After the installation process has completed successfully, we will need to configure our new SharePoint 2013 farm. The window shown below will pop up a few seconds after closing the installation wizard. Click the Next > button.

Welcome to SharePoint Products

Welcome to SharePoint Products

A warning immediately pops up after clicking Next >to inform us that several services will be restarted. If this were a shared box hosting other websites, this would definitely be concerning and require an afterhours installation. However, because this is a brand new server there is no harm in restarting services. Click the Yes button to continue.

SharePoint 2013 - Services Restart

Services Restart

The next part is important to remember. We are not adding a server to the SharePoint 2010 farm. We are completely creating new farm. Select the Create a new server farm radio button and click Next >.

SharePoint 2013 - Upgrade Server Farm

Upgrade Sever Farm

The configuration wizard is now ready to create and write information to a database. Preferably, this is a completely separate SQL server than what the SharePoint 2010 server is using. We don’t want to worry about bringing that server down or accidentally overwriting any databases. Enter the information of the database server and whatever username/password you will be using as the SharePoint database administrator. It would be best to create a new account in Active Directory or reuse the AD account the farm we’re upgrading uses. When complete, click the Next > button.

Install SharePoint 2013  - Specify Configuration Database Settings

Specify Configuration Database Settings

A farm passphrase is required to add another SharePoint server to a farm. Because this is the first server in the new farm, the passphrase will be entered here. Click Next > when complete. The wizard will let you know if the passphrases do not match.

Install Shareoint 2013  - Specify Farm Security Settings

Specify Farm Security Settings

The next dialogue box configures the security settings and port for the Central Administration site. Unless there is a specific port you wish to use, leave the Specify port number checkbox unchecked. I have also left NTLM, which is the default, selected. Click Next >.

Install SharePoint 2013 - Configure SharePoint Central Administration Web Application

Configure SharePoint Central Administration Web Application

This window just informs us of some configuration information that will be used. Ensure that the information is correct and click Next >. In the screenshot below, as an example, you’ll see the information for the servers I’m using to create this article.

Install SharePoint 2013  - Completing the SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard

Completing the SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard

The configuration process will begin after you click Next >. This part will take several minutes. The configuration wizard is writing information to the configuration database, configuring IIS, and setting up authentication for your new farm.

Configuring SharePoint Products

Configuring SharePoint Products

After the wizard completes, you are again presented with the options we previously entered and a Configuration Successful message. Click the Finish button to complete the configuration wizard.

SharePoint 2013 - Configuration Successful

Configuration Successful

Upon completion, the wizard will open the Central Administration site in your default web browser. At this point, because we’re upgrading, we don’t want start the next wizard. Click the Cancel button shown in the screenshot to stop the wizard.

SharePoint 2013 Central Administration

SharePoint 2013 Central Administration

Note: As a quick side note, we don’t want to auto configure any these service applications:

  • Search
  • User Profile
  • Business Data Connectivity
  • PerformancePoint Services
  • Managed Metadata
  • Secure Store

These service applications will be upgraded form our previous version in the database-attach method.


At this point we have successfully installed SharePoint 2013. We went over the requirements of SharePoint 2013, installed its prerequisites and software, and ran the configuration wizard. In the next article, we will continue with the database-attach method and complete the upgrade from SharePoint 2010 to 2013.

  1. Matt Engibous 10 years ago

    Hi Andrew,

    Nice blog. One comment on the min requirements. The min RAM for production environments is 12GB now in SP2013.


  2. Author
    Andrew Jacops 10 years ago

    Thanks for the information Matt! I see that they did indeed change the minimum requirements. They were updated on January 29th, 2013. Thanks for the great find, and I’ll see about getting those requirements updated.

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