Obtaining the Software

Microsoft has a student program called DreamSpark which has a number of free-for-use commercial software including Windows Server Series & Visual Studio Series.

Simply follow the instructions and verify your identity, then you can get serial numbers :)

Tip: Do not download the software directly from DreamSpark, instead, download them from Microsoft directly. The speed is a lot faster!

Installing the Software

As Simple as π. The only thing that needs to be mentioned is to choose a full install(Which Includes The GUI).

Write the Serial Number on a paper - you will need it during installation process.

Some Problems I Encountered

  1. The Server 2012 R2 Edition DO NOT include Bluetooth Support - neither can you install it manually.
  2. Compatibility problems with NVIDIA Optimus Technology - Some programs will CRASH if you do not set your default display card to be Nvidia.

    Those programs usually use 2D rendering for their UI, for example, the Server Manager. You will probably see a BEX fault when they crash.