Remote Desktop Connection – Console (RDP)

Remote Desktop Connection – Console (RDP)

I use Remote Desktop (RDP) to connect to Windows servers and workstations every day(XP, 2000, 2003, 2008, Vista and Windows 7).

However I only occasionally need to connect to the console on the remote computer.
And every time I do I have to look up how to do it again because I can’t remember the syntax.  Like today.

So when I looked it up today I just decided to copy the Shortcut I had on my Quick Launch bar and have a second button to connect to the console.

  • First, I right clicked on the shortcut,  clicked “Copy Shortcut”,  this put a new shortcut on my Quick Launch bar but it will work where ever you have a shortcut,  including the Start Menu.
  • Then, I right clicked the new shortcut and went to properties and change the name to “Remote Desktop Connection (2)” to “Remote Desktop Connection – Console” and added this switch to the end of the target field ” /console”  so it looks something like
    …….mstsc.exe /console”
  • Then, I clicked Change Icon on the properties and I picked from the list of icons so the it looked different on the icon menu.

Problem solved,  It only took 2 minutes and I can quickly connect to the console via Remote Desktop easily now.  (of course this blog took another 10 minutes)

 

Print jobs on Remote Desktop wont delete from print queue

Print jobs on Remote Desktop wont delete from print queue

A remote user was logging into their server to do some work from afar.

When they went to print their work some sort of connection problem occurred and when they reconnected they  had two local printers in their “Printers and Faxes” window with different sessions,  one with a print job (from the disconnected session) and one with no print jobs (from the current session).
When attempting to print again the job would not print and they would disconnect and try again only to find that they now have 3 printers (2 from disconnected session).  This went on for a while they tried to delete the print jobs from the queue but the job never deleted,  it just stayed in the status of “Deleting” or “Deleting – Paused”.  Eventually they ended up with 6 of these printers each with one print job (I am sure they could have put more jobs in a print queue if they really wanted to).
This is the point at which I came in to clear up the issue.
I knew we had to clear out the print queue or that printer would never work.
Here are the steps we had to go through  in order to fix it,

  1. Stop the “Print Spooler” Service. You can do this two ways
    1. From the Command Prompt (Start -> Run -> Type ‘cmd’ -> Click ‘OK’)
      This opens a Command Line Interface,  type “net stop spooler”
    2. Open the Services Console (Start -> Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Services)
      Select “Print Spooler” from the list of Services by double clicking and then click “Stop”
  2. Delete all print jobs.  You can also do this two ways
    1. In the open Command Prompt window type del c:windowssystem32spoolprinters*
      Type ‘y’ if it asks you if you are sure
    2. In your Windows Explorer window goto C:windowssystem32spoolprinters
      Delete all files
  3. Restart the print spooler. Either:
    1. In the open Command Prompt window type “net start spooler”
    2. Click the “Start” button on the open “Print Spooler” Service Properties window

 

There you have it.  For those of you that know how you can create a batch file which will quickly do all of this

net stop spooler
sleep for 5
del /Q /F c:windowssystem32spoolprinters*
net start spooler

The “/Q” switch tells the “del” command to delete the files without prompting if it is “ok to delete on global wildcard”
The “/F” switch tells the “del” command to delete the files even if they are marked read only

To get this batch file to work you will need to get the “sleep” program to pause for a few seconds after the service stops so that the system can release the lock it has on the files.  If you do not have the sleep  program you may find that running the batch file the first time errors out saying it can not access the file.  But run it a second time and it works.

DPM Error 337: Manually Set Name of Allowed DPM Server on Client

DPM Error 337: Manually Set Name of Allowed DPM Server on Client

When installing a Protection Agent from DPM 2007 on a server on a Windows 2003 Domain I ran into a wacky problem where the DPM Administration Console errored out during Install.

A server errored out with a 337 error.

You cannot install the protection agent on MYSERVER because access to the computer has been denied.

The Microsoft Documentation says that the recommended action is “Do the following to troubleshoot this issue: ”

1) If another DPM server is currently protecting MYSERVER use that DPM server to uninstall the protection agent from MYSERVER. Then, use this DPM server to install the protection agent on MYSERVER.

2) Verify that the time on the DPM server and the selected computer is synchronized with the domain controller. At a command prompt, type “net time /set” to synchronize the time with the domain controller.

3) If the computer is a domain controller, verify that the primary domain controller (the PDC Emulator) is running Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 1 (SP1), and that Active Directory has completed replication between the domain controllers since the Windows Server 2003 SP1 installation.

So I start debugging with item 1.  Since I am not the first Administrator to work on this installation AND there is another DPM server located elsewhere on the network which was recenctly installed,  it seems possible that something odd was done with this computer wpointed to another DPM Server.

First I try uninstalling the client locally on the system and I log into the server to remove the program using Add/Remove Programs,  however the Add/Remove Programs listing is completely blank.  I do a bunch of research on this and eventually  I determine that the Unistall information must somehow be corrupt,  the system needs a OS restore or something.  I cant afford this and will plan to do this another day.   I start browsing around in the Program Files directory for the DPM Client to try and find an uninstall program or something and I happen upon an executable that looks interesting.  I open a command prompt and run the program to find out what it does.

#> cd C:Program FilesMicrosoft Data Protection ManagerDPMbin
#> setDPMServer.exe /?

This shows me how to run this program

#> SetDPMServer -dpmservername < servername>

So I run it with the name of my DPM server

#> SetDPMServer -dpmservername MYSERVER

And it clearly does something giving me the following information.

Configuring dpm server settings and firewall settings for dpm server =[MYSERVER]
Configuring dpm server settings and firewall settings for dpm server =[W2K.DOMAIN.COMMYSERVER]
Configuration completed successfully!!!

Now I head back over to my DPM server and run the install again from the Management Tab of the DPM 2007 Administrator Console.  And would you beleive it?  It installed perfectly.  So there are two things I need to get in order to address the other issues on my network (find out why Add / Remove Programs is not coming up,  find out if anyone is trying to protect some of the computers using another DPM server on the network).
The thing I never found out was if it could have been items 2 or 3 where there is a time sync problem between the AD controller and the server.  It might have been better to start with the easy fixes described in those steps since that would have been easier and would have ruled it in our out.

Until then though this will work; Mystery Solved!

DPM Error 307: Manually Uninstalling Microsoft System Center DPM Protection Agent

DPM Error 307: Manually Uninstalling Microsoft System Center DPM Protection Agent

When installing an Protection Agent from DPM 2007 on a server on a Windows 2003 Domain I ran into a wacky problem.

A server errored out with a 307 error.

The protection agent operation failed because DPM detected an unknown DPM protection agent on MYSERVER.

The Microsoft Documentation says that the recommended action is to:

Use Add or Remove Programs in Control Panel to uninstall the protection agent from MYSERVER, then reinstall the protection agent and perform the operation again.

So I log into the server to remove the program using Add/Remove Programs, however the Add/Remove Programs listing is completely blank. I do a bunch of research on this and eventually I determine that the Uninstall information must somehow be corrupt, the system needs a OS restore or something. I cant afford this and will plan to do this another day. In the mean time I need to get this program uninstalled so I can reinstall the DPM Agent on this server.

I couldn’t find an MSI or anything to use to uninstall it but I found a post describing where in the registry to find uninstall program locations is for certain programs.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowCurrentVersionUninstall

Well, there is supposed to be an entry here for each of the programs that are installed on your system, but there was not one for the DPM agent, I did find all sorts of UID type entries and I looked through them and low and behold, I found an entry for Microsoft System Center DPM Protection Agent (the name of the agent was in the ‘DisplayName’ string key) I then copied the string in the ‘UninstallString’ key

MsiExec.exe /I{D58FCD22-5818-412B-93C3-D03CF3D6A2CE}
Note: do not run this on your system, the UID above should correspond to your system

pasted it into a command prompt window and it then ran the uninstall program for “Microsoft System Center DPM Protection Agent” and prompted for a reboot.

I rebooted and the system came back up, out of curiosity I went back into the registry and I could not find the entry in the registry any more. I am not going to do more investigation into at this point however it makes me think that the items that show in this registry folder with a UID instead of a program name are somehow corrupted even though this one ran okay. I looked on my windows XP workstation (which Add/Remove Programs works on) and I have dozens of UID entries in this registry area so I am sure that this is not the cause of the “corrupted” Add/Remove programs issue.

Anyway, thats it, the “corrupt” DPM protection agent was removed and so I was able to rerun the install process from the DPM 2007 Administrator Console again. It succeeded without issue and now I can backup my server.

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