Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) are a core component of many IT professionals’ toolkits. However, the RSAT installation process changes with almost every new version of Windows. To clear up the confusion, here’s how to install RSAT on each version of Windows, from Windows 11 to Windows 8.1.
How to install RSAT on Windows 11
Windows 11 brought many changes to the world’s most popular desktop operating system, including how we install Remote Server Administration Tools. Here’s how to install RSAT in Windows 11.
Right-click on the Start icon, then click Settings.
In the Settings menu, click Apps, then click Optional features.
On the Optional features page, click View features.
Type RSAT into the search field.
Select the RSAT features you want to install, then click Next.
Review the feature installation overview, then click Install.
Monitor your RSAT install on the Optional features page.
To find the RSAT features once installed, enter tools into the Windows search field, then click on Windows Tools.
How to install RSAT on Windows 10 (October 2018 update & newer)
If you're rocking one of the latest versions of Windows 10 (October 2018 update and newer), then you're in luck! As with Windows 11, the newer versions of Windows 10 come with Remote Server Administration Tools baked right into the OS. However, they still need to be enabled. The process to enable RSAT features is similar to Windows 11, with a few differences. Here's how to enable your favorite RSAT features in Windows 10.
Click the Start icon to open the Start menu.
Click the Settings icon to open the Settings menu.
Click Optional features.
Click Add a feature.
Scroll down the list of optional features until you find the RSAT features. Select whichever RSAT features you want to add, then click Install.
You will see the status of each RSAT feature being installed.
Once the tools have finished installing, you'll be able to access them through the Start menu in the Windows Administrative Tools folder.
How to install RSAT using PowerShell
If you consider yourself a power user and love all things power — like power tools, power steering, and you drink nothing but Powerade — then you might want a more powerful way to install Remote Server Administration Tools. If this sounds like you, then here's how to install RSAT features using PowerShell.
List all RSAT features and the installed state using PowerShell
First, we’ll use PowerShell to identify which RSAT features are currently installed. Here’s the script.
As you can see from this screenshot, this machine already has a few RSAT features installed.
Install a specific RSAT feature by name
Replace <tool_name> with the name of the Remote Server Administration Tool you want to install.
Here is a list of all the RSAT features with their proper PowerShell names.
|Active Directory Domain Services and Lightweight Directory Services Tools||Rsat.ActiveDirectory.DS-LDS.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|BitLocker Drive Encryption Administration Utilities||Rsat.BitLocker.Recovery.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Active Directory Certificate Services||Rsat.CertificateServices.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|DHCP Server Tools||Rsat.DHCP.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|DNS Server Tools||Rsat.Dns.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Failover Clustering Tools||Rsat.FailoverCluster.Management.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|File Services Tools||Rsat.FileServices.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Group Policy Management Tools||Rsat.GroupPolicy.Management.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|IP Address Management (IPAM) Client||Rsat.IPAM.Client.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Data Center Bridging LLDP Tools||Rsat.LLDP.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Network Controller Management Tools||Rsat.NetworkController.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Network Load Balancing Tools||Rsat.NetworkLoadBalancing.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Remote Access Management Tools||Rsat.RemoteAccess.Management.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Remote Desktop Services Tools||Rsat.RemoteDesktop.Services.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Shielded VM Tools||Rsat.Shielded.VM.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Storage Migration Service Management Tools||Rsat.StorageMigrationService.Management.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Storage Replica Module for Windows PowerShell||Rsat.StorageReplica.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|System Insights Module for Windows PowerShell||Rsat.SystemInsights.Management.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Volume Activation Tools||Rsat.VolumeActivation.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
|Windows Server Update Services Tools||Rsat.WSUS.Tools~~~~0.0.1.0|
For example, to install Remote Desktop Service Tools, run this command:
How to install all RSAT features with one PowerShell command
If you don't have the patience to install RSAT features one at a time, I don’t blame you. Instead, we can use this script to install all the available RSAT features in one go.
If you have the Optional features window open after running the command, you can monitor each feature as it's installed.
How to install RSAT on computers with older versions of Windows
In Microsoft’s perfect world, we’d all be running the latest and greatest version of Windows and we’d have zero complaints. Instead, we live in a world with people like me who resist change while kicking and screaming. Thankfully, Microsoft still provides downloads for Remote Server Administration Tools for Windows 8.1 and older versions of Windows 10.
To install these RSAT packages, download the appropriate version for your OS, run the installer, and that's it. All features are enabled by default. If you want to disable certain features, you can select individual tools to disable by going into Control Panel > Programs > Turn Windows features on or off. In the Windows Features dialog box, expand Remote Server Administration Tools, and then expand either Role Administration Tools or Feature Administration Tools. Clear the check boxes for any tools that you want to turn off.
As a side note, if you’re still running Windows 8.1, just know that I’m silently judging you from across the internet.
Remote Server Administration Tools are a great way to avoid getting out of your comfy office chair to manage server roles. They’re also great at alleviating server usage congestion. If you've got a coworker that never fails to log into the server just before taking a 3-hour lunch break, thus locking you out of the server, RSAT may be the solution you're looking for. That, or try switching their keyboard to the DVORAK layout when they aren't looking. That should keep them busy for a little while so you can get logged in before they do.
If you're looking for other tools to enhance your work life, download a free trial of PDQ Deploy & Inventory, and sit back and relax while this dynamic duo keeps your network environment up to date with the latest applications and patches. If you manage remote devices, then try out PDQ Connect. Connect helps you manage those hard-to-reach remote devices as if they’re right in front of you.