Though it's not a big deal, but running Etherpad as hosted on Windows is troublesome. Here's how to make it predictable and easy.

What you'd need beforehand:

1. Properly install system-wide Node.js, and of course NPM with it. Get the latest-and-stable from NodeJs.org.
After installing, check it from command prompt.

C:\users\alpha\> node -v  
v5.11.0

C:\users\alpha\> npm verison
{ npm: '3.8.6',
ares: '1.10.1-DEV',
http_parser: '2.7.0',
icu: '56.1',
modules: '47',
node: '5.11.0',
openssl: '1.0.2g',
uv: '1.8.0',
v8: '4.6.85.31',
zlib: '1.2.8' }

Version(s) in your output may not be same but nothing to worry.

2. Download and install latest Python 2.7 from Python.org. Please note that Python2 is needed as system-default, NOT Python 3.
Check it by running Python interpreter from command-prompt.

C:\users\alpha\> python
Python 2.7.11 (v2.7.11:6d1b6a68f775, Dec  5 2015, 20:32:19) [MSC v.1500 32 bit (Intel)] on win32
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>>

3. Now, make sure you have Microsoft Build Tools 2013 or newer properly installed on you system. Grab it from Microsoft.
If the given link don't work, look for it under Tools for Visual Studio 2013 in VisualStudio's download site.

Only after you have done these properly, proceed to download Etherpad-lite from etherpad.org The download size should be over 50MB.

Do NOT go for building from the source unless you must.

Download the zip, unzip it, move it to your desired folder, and then run start.bat in the folder.

You will never know how much time i just saved you.

You're welcome ... ;)