Microsoft – Windows – v2012 – Managing Remote Desktop Connections – Using Remote Desktop Connection Manager (RDCMan)

Background

As a quick followup to a previous post “Technical: Microsoft – Windows – v2012 – Managing Remote Desktop Connections – Using Task Manager” (https://danieladeniji.wordpress.com/2014/04/30/technical-microsoft-windows-v2012-managing-remote-desktop-connections/), we wanted to identify a free Microsoft tool,  “Remote Deskop Connection Manager” (RDCMan), as another pathway towards listing and managing remotely connected users.

Supported OSes

Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Vista, Windows 2012.

The same binary works on the aforementioned OS versions.

Having said that Windows XP and Windows 2003 users will have to upgrade their remote desktop client (mstsc) to version 6 or newer.

Download URL

The utility is available via http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=21101.  And, the current version is 2.2 and it has been available since 5/27/2010.

Install

Install the application and please pay attention to your install location.

Since the application is not part of the base OS nor its install folder added to your path, you will have to offer its full path name to run it from your command line.  Btw, the App name is rdcman.exe.

The Application is added to your Program Start Menu as “Remote Desktop Connection Manager”.

Pre TSClient Patch

On MS Windows XP \ Windows 2003, If you try to run the app without first upgrading your tsclient, you will get the error message pasted below:

Error Message

Textual:

Error Message Title:

RDCMan – Unable to initialize

Error Message Body:

RDCMan encountered an error during initialization.  There are likely causes for this: an incompatible version of mstscax.dll is registered or it is not registered at all.  Please see the help for details.

Image:

incompatibleversionofmstscax

Please access  Colek’s Blog posting – How to Fix RDCMan Problem: “Incompatible version of mstscax.dll” ( http://colekcolek.com/2012/03/23/fix-rdcman-problem-incompatible-version-mstscax-dll/ ) to read more about this error message.

Patch Download Links:

Version #

How do we get the version number of Remote Desktop Client ( mstsc.exe ).

  • Launch Remote Desktop Client ( mstsc.exe )
  • Access the System Menu
  • From the System Menu, access the “About” option
  • And, you will see a screen similar to the one below

RemoteDesktopConnection-About

Normal Use

To use, launch application and create a new a new RDC Management Group by using the menu items “File”\”New”.

To add new servers, right click the appropriate Management Group, and choose the “Add Server” menu item.

To list sessions, right click on the server, and select “List Sessions”.

Sessions

References

Remote Desktop Client – Version #

Microsoft – Windows – Server – 2012 – Burning CD\Audio (DVD Writer does not show up) [2014.02.04]

Microsoft – Windows – Server – 2012 – Burning CD\Audio (DVD Writer does not show up)  [2014.02.04]

Background

This is a bit of disjointed post as the sections were part of an email dialogue that Ivan Cotton and I had yesterday (Wednesday 2014.2.5).

Ivan had commented on our of our postings, specifically:

Microsoft – Windows – Server – 2012 – Burning CD (DVD Writer does not show up)
https://danieladeniji.wordpress.com/2012/12/27/microsoft-windows-server-2012-burning-cd-dvd-writer-does-not-show-up/

Following below are some thoughts on trying to get your CD\DVD Burner Application to find and use a working CD\DVD Writer.

Review Devices

I think the first thing is to ensure that we actually have writable CD/DVD drives.

We can use MS Windows Control Panel to investigate:

  • Launch Control Panel
  • Access the “DVD/CD-Rom drives” tree node
  • Review list of DVD/CD Rom drives listed

ControlPanel--DVD-CDRom

Explanation

Drives Manufacturer
Memorex DVD16+/-DL4RWID2 USB Device Manufacturer :-MemorexDVD/CD :- DVD+ or – :- +/-Double Layer – DLRead/Write :- RW

Model Number :- DL4RWID2

USB

TSTcorp DVD +-RW TS-H653G Manufacturer :- TSTcorpDVD/CD :- DVD+/- :- +-Read/Write :- RWModel Number :-
TS-H653G

From the screen shot above, we can see that we have a couple of Read & Write capable CD/DVD Drives.

Investigate Applications

Start your burning application and review its run mode.

Here is one way to do so.

  • Launch Task Manager and access the Details tab.
  • On the column header bar, right click and choose the columns that you want to include — In our case “Elevated” and “UAC Virtualization

Here are the columns we have selected:

TaskManager_Details_Columns

Task Manager – Details (with more columns)

TaskManager_Details

In the screen above, you want to review the Elevated column and make sure it says Yes for the burner applications you ‘re investigating.

Ensure Burn Application Runs in Elevated Mode

One way to ensure that an Application always run in “elevated mode” is to do the following:

To mark an application to always run as an administrator, do the following:

Configure Applications to Always Run as an Administrator
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/ff431742.aspx

  • On the Start menu, locate the program that you want to always run as an administrator.
  • Right-click the application’s shortcut, and then click Properties.
  • In the Properties dialog box, click the Compatibility tab.
  • Do one of the following:
  • To apply the setting to the currently logged-on user, select the Run This Program As An Administrator check box, and then click OK.
  • To apply the setting to all users on the computer and regardless of which shortcut is used to start the application, click Change Setting For All Users to display the Properties dialog box for the application’s .exe file, select the Run This Program As An Administrator check box, and then click OK twice.

Technical: Microsoft – OS – Windows Server 2012 – Regain Windows GUI\Shell

Technical: Microsoft – OS – Windows Server 2012 – Regain Windows GUI\Shell

Background

The web is full of advises, but some of them are a bit in-complete.

On Friday evening, I downloaded and installed SharePoint 2010 Foundation Services.

Woke up to play around with it on Saturday.  Everything look good, but as I started to feel my way around with stsadm I started having problems.

Specifically what problems, well the big one, the Configuration Administration Web page was coming up empty.

I thought of trying to employ “SharePoint Diagnostic Studio 2010 (SPDiag 3.0) (SharePoint Server 2010)” downloadable from http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh144782(v=office.14).aspx.

As the diagnostic tool needs a 64-bit box I needed to have it run on the Windows 2012 Server itself.

But, more problems! Something of the sort that the SharePoint diagnostics targets PowerShell v2, while on the other hand Window 2012 now comes installed with PowerShell v3.

Messed up my Server Box

I tried everything to try to get my Windows 2012 to cooperate, but no help came.  So finally took that one advice that says to uninstall PowerShell 3.0.

BTW, PowerShell and other tools are now productized as Windows Management Framework.

In the middle of uninstall, Microsoft warned me plenty as to which products are dependent on MS Windows Management Framework.  But, it was 3.00 AM Sunday morning and I really needed to see if uninstalling PowerShell 3.0 will help.

So went ahead and threw caution to the wind.  The uninstall of Windows Management Framework took a long time.

The machine rebooted and uninstall continued.

Another reboot occurred and upon coming back no GUI.

Fix

Searched the net and advises ranged from using Sconfig to PowerShell to re-install the GUI.

Fix – Sconfig

I tried Sconfig as documented in http://www.howtogeek.com/111967/how-to-turn-the-gui-off-and-on-in-windows-server-2012/.  But, on my screen the option to “Restore Graphical User Interface” is not showing up.

SConfig

It is possible, that the option to “Restore Graphical User Interface” is not showing up as I did not use this tool to remove the GUI and thus the toolkit is not really identifying the system as completely lacking the GUI.

Fix – PowerShell

Unfortunately, I had uninstalled PowerShell and the executable is no longer active on my computer.

Fix – DSIM

And, another option was to use dsim.

Dsim stands for “Deployment Image Servicing and Management”.

To use it per our purpose, please issue the following commands:



dism /online /enable-feature /featurename:servercore-fullserver /all 
dism /online /enable-feature /featurename:Server-Gui-Shell /all
dism /online /enable-feature /featurename:Server-Gui-Mgmt /all

Each command should be entered on its own.  And, please wait for each command to process and complete, before entering the next.

You will be asked if you want to restart upon each component completion, but please respond as “No” until you have completed the last command.

Addendum:

Audio (2013.10.07)

On Monday (10/7/2013), I found out that I can no longer hear YouTube. The speakers icon at the far bottom right corner of my desktop was on point and suggested that the “Audio Service might not be running.

Checked through the Services Applet and confirmed that the “Windows Audio” Service is indeed configured for manual start-up. Changed it back to “Automatic”.

Wireless Devices (2013.10.09)

On Wednesday (10/9/2013) confirmed that the wireless networking device is conclusively offline.

To bring it back up, you can use DISM or Powershell.

DISM:

From command line, issue:


dism /online /Enable-Feature /all /FeatureName:WirelessNetworking

Powershell:

Start powershell.exe and issue this command:

add-windowsfeature wireless-newtworking

 

References

Microsoft – Windows – Server – 2012 – Burning CD (DVD Writer does not show up)

 

This is one of those things you found out before, but during the week between Christmas and New Year you ‘re bound to forget everything.

So here we go you ‘re trying to burn music on MS Windows 2012 Server Edition and no matter which burning software you have loaded, none of them can see your precious internal DVD Writer.

And, so you un-plug your external DVD Writer (from another computer) and plug it in through the USB port.  But, still no writer.

Then you remember that MS Windows 2012 is a bit locked down.  So you exit the Application and re-start the Application as an Administrator.

BTW, here is a quick list of free CD Audio Burning software that works with you favorite OS:

BTW, CDBurnerXP worked a bit better as my image was 80 MB and the CD was only 78 MB and none of the Applications would force feed 80 MB to 78 MB.

But, CDBurnerXP has the over-burn option.

Addendum

Addendum – 2014.02.06

I posted a bit more diagnostic and remediation steps based on an email conversation I had with Ivan Cotton.

Microsoft – Windows – Server – 2012 – Burning CD\Audio (DVD Writer does not show up)  [2014.02.04]

https://danieladeniji.wordpress.com/2014/02/06/microsoft-windows-server-2012-burning-cdaudio-dvd-writer-does-not-show-up-2014-02-04/