ADFS and ADFS Proxy in Windows Server 2012

By: Ashley J  

If you are one of the early adopters of Office 365 and had deployed ADFS for Single Sign On, then probably you had used ADFS 2.0 with Windows 2008. In Windows 2008, ADFS and ADFS Proxy were a dowloadable exe file that you can install it and then configure it. When you configure the ADFS you can either configure it to be an ADFS Server or an ADFS Proxy server. But in Windows Server 2012 all that has changed.

There are no more exe files for you to download and install. Instead, ADFS is included in Windows 2012 as a feature. You just have to add this ADFS feature in your server. Both ADFS and ADFS Proxy services are part of the same feature. So they are not two different features. So in both ADFS Server and ADFS Proxy server you will have to add the same feature.

But the only difference in configuring ADFS vs ADFS Proxy in 2012 is for ADFS Server, after you install the feature and add the default website, you have to goto that ADFS feature and configure it running the ADFS Federation Configuration Wizard. But for ADFS Proxy, you only need to add the ADFS feature and the default website. You should not run the 'ADFS Federation Configuration Wizard'.


  1. Open the Windows PowerShell. (Right click the powershell icon on the taskbar and select 'Run as Administrator')
  2. Run this cmdlet: add-adfsproxy
  3. When you run this cmdlet, it will establish trust between this Proxy and your ADFS Server. (Therefore, before you do this, your ADFS Server should be up and running).

I had to search everywhere looking for document on setting up ADFS Proxy server in 2012. Some even said it is not supported. But it was really a simple procedure settingup ADFS and ADFS Proxy server in windows 2012. Therefore, I post this for others who may have similar issues.

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