SharePoint Server 2013 Virtual Machine Download (updated Aug 16, 2017 & SP2016 VM coming soon)

I earlier created this SharePoint 2013 RTM Virtual machine on Win Server 2012 way back in Jan 2014. A lot has changed since then with the introduction of SP1 and hence I thought it was time to create a new one so everyone could benefit from it. Following are the details of this new evaluation VM and how to download it:

  1. The VM was created using the VMWare Player version 6.0.3 which can be downloaded as a free download from the VMWare site. You can use the latesr version of the free tool to launch it. Once you have downloaded it, you can also convert it into other formats to open it with another virtualization tool of your choice.
  2. It was created using the 180 day evaluation versions Windows Server 2012 R2, SQL Server 2014 (see below) and the SharePoint 2013 Trial license (with SP1 and July 2017 CU). If you’d like to, you can enter your own keys to activate the trial/ evaluation versions. These 180 day evaluation versions should be good through Feb 7, 2018 30th August 2017 24th Feb 2017 12th August 2016 18th Feb 2016 8th August 1015 7th Feb 2015.
  3. It consists of 4 hard drives, a VMWare virtual machine configuration (.vmx) file and other supporting VMWare files. All the files and hard drives are part of 12 self-extracting compressed files. The total size of the compressed files is 11.5GB (with the total size of the extracted files at about 28.7 GB). These self-extracting (executable) archive can be downloaded from the download link mentioned below.
  4. The VM has 16 GB RAM allocated to it by default (controlled by the settings in the “.vmx” file or via the virtual machine settings in the VMWare player). You can reduce or increase the RAM to suite your needs, although, 12 GB is the minimum required and 16 GB is what I will recommend for this VM.
  5. It has the Classic Shell start menu installed from so you can get the old Windows start menu in addition to the new Windows “Start screen”. This also results in Windows booting up to the desktop instead of the new Windows start screen. Although, if you’d like to, you can get to the Start screen by clicking the Shift+Windows button combination. You can also configure Classic Shell so Windows boots up to the start screen instead, if you so desire.
  6. It has the as the Active Directory domain and has the apps service configured to use the app domain.
  7. Once you fire up the VM, Windows will auto login to the SP_Admin account. This “gmsp2013\sp_admin” account was the account used to install SharePoint and should be used to access central admin. All accounts in the VM share the same password which is part of the ReadMe file accompanying the downloads.
  8. The virtual machine additionally has the following accounts created and used for various services:
    1. SP_Farm: The farm account
    2. SP_CacheSuperReader: The object cache read access account
    3. SP_CacheSuperUser: The object cache full access account
    4. SP_ExcelUser: Account used for excel services (not yet configured on the VM)
    5. SP_PeffPointUser: Account used for performance point services (not yet configured on the VM)
    6. SP_PortalAppPool: Account for the content web application pools
    7. SP_ProfilesAppPool: Web app pool for the MySites web application (not yet configured on the VM)
    8. SP_ProfileSync: The user profile synchronization account
    9. SP_SearchContent: The default content access account for the Search Service Application
    10. SP_SearchService: Account to run the SharePoint Search “Windows Service
    11. SP_Services: Service Applications  App Pool account
    12. SP_VisioUser: Account used for Visio services (not yet configured on this VM)
    13. SQL_Admin: Used to Install the SQL Server
    14. SQL_Services: SQL service account for the MSSQLServer & SQLServerAgent services
      You can read more on different accounts for SharePoint in the following articles: &
  9. If the VM does not start after you have downloaded it, ensure that the number of files you have downloaded, the total size of the archived files and the total size of the extracted files matches what’s specified above.

Finally, all the files, including the ReadMe.txt are uploaded to the Google Drive folder at the following link:

To download the files, you can go with either of the following options:

  1. Add the folder to your Google Drive and then use the Google Drive Desktop Client to sync the files to your local computer (highly recommended) OR
  2. Download the files directly by using the browser “Save target as…” functionality (not really recommended and should be used if for some odd reason #1 does not work for you) OR
  3. There might be some download managers as well that might allow you to specify a google drive URL and download all files from their but I am not aware of any at the moment

Instructions for extracting the VM: You will need to download all the .rar and .exe files to your machine and then run the “SP2013SP1.part01.exe” executable to unpack the virtual machine hard drives. After ensuring that you have the latest version of the VMWare Player installed, you can then double-click the “SP2013.vmx” file to run the virtual machine.

Instructions to activate the licenses: Here’s how you can activate the licenses for:

  1. For the OS (Windows Server 2012 R2): You can view the instructions in the comments for my previous blog here  or in the corresponding TechNet article here
  2. For SQL Server 2014: Unfortunately there’s no way to rearm a SQL Server Evaluation license. You will have to convert it to a retail license. The way to do that is to:
    1. Run the SQL Server setup
    2. Click on the maintenance tab
    3. Click on “Edition upgrade”
    4. Follow the steps till you reach the product key screen and enter your product key (usually pre-filled if a licensed installation media is used)
    5. You can read a good set of instructions for converting your eval license to a full license here:
  3. For SharePoint Server 2013:
    1. Browse to Central Admin –> Upgrade and Migration –> Convert farm license type
    2. On the Convert License Type page, in the Enter the Product Key box, type the new product key and then click OK.
    3. Verify that the license is upgraded by going back to the page
    4. Please note that the SharePoint 2013 trial is only available as an Enterprise trial. Consequently you will only be able to activate an Enterprise (and not Standard) CAL on this VM

Hope you will find the VM useful. If you did, it will be great if you can leave a comment below OR through my twitter handle: @mahajang OR share any feedback that you may have! Happy SharePointing! 🙂

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171 Responses to SharePoint Server 2013 Virtual Machine Download (updated Aug 16, 2017 & SP2016 VM coming soon)

  1. Dharmesh says:

    Hi Gourav,

    Thanks for your response. Surely i will wait and will keep checking after Feb24.

    • Hi Dharmesh
      I have uploaded the latest version of the VM and updated the blog post to reflect the new location. Let me know if you run into any issues or need any help!


  2. Rodney says:

    Hi, Gaurav, I have downloaded the VM correctly and tried to open with VMPlayer 6.0.3 but while powering on it shows “Error while powering on: Internal error.”. Will you please discuss the issue a little here.

    • Hi Rodney,

      This typically points to a corrupted or incomplete download. Can you please confirm that the size of the archived files was 11.5 GB and that of the extracted files is 28.6 GB?
      Also so I know that you downloaded the latest version, can you please also let me know when did you start the download? I only uploaded the VM a couple of hours back (around 6:45 PM EST).
      In either case, I would recommend re-trying your download to be sure.
      Thank you

  3. enaybee says:

    Hi Gaurav,
    Thank you very much for sharing the VM. Really appreciated.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Hi Gaurav,
    Thanks a lot for sharing, i face issue to connect with internet using VM. can you please guide me.


    • Hi
      Sorry for the late response. Can you please check if you have a proxy server setup in the environment or are you directly accessing the internet on your host machine?

  5. Nigel Rodriguez says:

    Hi Gaurav,
    Thank you for an excellent job on this vm. I have successfully converted it to work with Hyper-V in my environment but I would however like your advice on how best to join this vm to my domain as I have purchased a second domain name to use the SharePoint apps. I plan on joining this vm to my domain and setting the app domain to match it for external testing.

  6. Sandeep says:

    Hi Gaurav,
    Thank you so much, i am able to configure and open the VM, My actual task is getting Sharepoint Reporting services, could you please let me know Which all components i need to install for SQL and SharePoint.

  7. Andrey says:

    Big thank you!

  8. Mike Y says:

    Hi Gaurav,

    Thank you so much! I am able to fire your VM (Win 10 + VM Player 12.5).
    Unfortunately, I failed to access the SharePoint server using another computer as a client, within the same computer network. I tried to type the IP / domain of the VM at the client browser, but it returned “401 UNAUTHORIZED”. I have pinged the VM at the client and it returned positive result (no data loss).

    Is that further configuration is necessary at the VM? Could you kindly help?

    In fact, my task is to test the performance of SharePoint at mobile device – can your VM help as well?


    • Hi Mike,
      It is a different forest with it’s own DNS server and that’s what’s making it difficult to access the VM. However, it should likely be accessible if you are able to ping it. You will however need to make host file entries:
      You will want to close and re-open your browser after saving the host file changes. The fact that you are receiving a 401 also means that you are not getting authenticated. If you are not getting prompted for authentication, make sure your browser settings are correct so it prompts you for credentials when trying to access the site. Once you are prompted, the credentials you will need to enter are those of the VM (and not your local credentials). If that does not work, make sure appropriate ports are enabled in windows firewall on the SharePoint server.
      Hope that helps
      Thank you

      • Mike Y says:

        Thank you Gaurav! It really works after I manually add the IP with the domain.

        But, I failed to connect the SP server using my iPad. Do I have to do something similar, i.e. jailbreaking the device and change the host table of the tablet?
        Adding the IP of VM to DNS (Wi-Fi IP address) at iPad did not help.

        Could you kindly help? Thanks!

      • Mike Y says:

        I had jailbroke my iPad and changed the host table but still failed to access the SharePoint (an error page). The browser failed to access the Intranet and always aim to access the Internet. I went into Settings > Wi-Fi > IP Address > Search Domains and entered our domain name at iPad and it failed too. Do you have any idea, Gaurav?

      • Hi Mike
        Sorry for not responding sooner. Unfortunately, I have never tried this. What error are you receiving? I am assuming the ipad as well as the sp server are connected to the same n/w. Can you please check the IIS log on the server to see if the request is coming through?

  9. P Kannan says:

    Hi Gaurav, I am a bit newby. I was able to download, setup the Sharepoint VM properly. It starts and works. I am not sure how to browse/sign into the Sharepoint VM so that I can develop in Ms Access applications to test. thx. P

    • Hi Kannan
      Sorry, not sure what you mean by browse/ sign into the VM. If you are you asking for the credentials to login to the VM, they are part of the accompanying ReadMe file. The VM should also auto-login using the sp_admin account. If you are asking for the Url of the SharePoint site, it’s Again, it’s set as the home page for the browser so you shouldn’t even have to enter the Url.
      Please let me know if I can be of further help

  10. P Kannan says:

    GM, I am stumped just like Mike above. VM is running properly. I do not know how to connect to it from my workstation. You had replied about host file change. What is the ip address to give the (Mike Q above: I am able to fire your VM (Win 10 + VM Player 12.5).
    Unfortunately, I failed to access the SharePoint server using another computer as a client, within the same computer network.)

  11. P Kannan says:

    GM, I am able to get the VM, Windows, Sharepoint working. I am able to browse to Intranet home from within the Windows server (VM). The VM is installed in a laptop and I have installed Ms Office in the laptop. I would like to know how to setup the laptop to connect to the Sharepoint VM.

  12. enaybee says:

    Hello Gaurav,
    Are you planning on updating current VM which will expire on Aug 30th, 2017?
    Thanks for your help.

  13. peter says:

    Great job for the new 2013 VM!

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