Enable Remote Desktop on a Remote Windows Server

Blog, Information Technology, Microsoft, Servers, Software, Windows

Scenario: you just finished installing some brand new servers in your server racks at the data center. You plugged them into your network, updated them with the latest windows updates and figured that you can finish the rest of the configuration while sitting at your desk at the office. Unfortunately you forgot to enable remote desktop and there is no way to get into the new machines.

Doh

Instead of driving all the way back to the data center, you can use these steps to enable remote desktop… remotely.

Steps

First you need to install PsExec from the Microsoft website http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb897553

Extract the zip file, open a command window and cd to the newly extracted directory. (Ex. I extracted to a folder on my desktop called PSTools. Start>Run>Cmd>”cd  C:\Users\Developer\Desktop\PSTools”)

Next you need to run the command listed below. Mofidy the command by changing remoteserver to the IP of the remote server.

psexec \\remoteserver reg add "hklm\system\currentcontrolset\control\terminal server" /f /v fDenyTSConnections /t REG_DWORD /d 0

remoteregistry

This sets the registry value on the remote machine to enable and disable remote desktop connections.

Now we need to add the firewall exceptions to allow us remote access. Again, modify the commands below by changing remoteserver to the IP of the machine.

psexec \\remoteserver netsh firewall set service remoteadmin enable
psexec \\remoteserver netsh firewall set service remotedesktop enable

netshfirewall

After running those two commands, you should be able to remote desktop into that machine.

One thought on “Enable Remote Desktop on a Remote Windows Server

  1. I have been trying to find out on what makes my connection falls out sometimes when I actually enable and check the connection settings. It was always been my problem. I have set-up everything but I guess there’s something I can learn from your post that I might start from beginning of set-up. Thanks!

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