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Automatic Login to Win 2000 Server

Posted on 2002-05-06
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Last Modified: 2010-04-13
How do I configure a Windows 2000 Server such that it will automatically login using a particular user account? For Windows 2000 Professional, I can do that with "Users and Passwords" in the Control Panel, but this is not available in Windows 2000 Server. Thanks.
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Question by:yongsing
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EricWestbo earned 50 total points
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According to technet, this option is not available for Windows 2000 Server or Advanced Server by design... however, the info on how to do it in Pro (control panel and registry) *is* available:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;q234562


If you're comfortable with backing up and tweaking your registry a bit, this might be the place to start.

hope this steers you in the right direction...

/ew





WARNING : Using Registry Editor incorrectly can cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that problems resulting from the incorrect use of Registry Editor can be solved. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.
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by:yongsing
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The article only described about automatic login in Win2000 professional. So there's no way for automatic login in Win2000 server?
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by:braddn
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Eric is correct. This is by design. You cannot automatically login to W2k Server/Adv Server.

One thing you might not know however is that you do NOT need to login to your server in order for it to function properly and perform all of it's tasks. For example, if you reboot your exchange 2000 server and it comes back up to the "Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to login" screen you do NOT need to login for Exchange to function properly. Same with all of your services - all of them will function properly.

Not sure if thats what your worried about or if there were other issues that you were concerned with.

Thanks!
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by:ThaiTran
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You can use the link that EricWewstbo gave you.  It will work on Windows 2000 server as well.  We did it on our site and it's been working very well.
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by:sfavilla
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what about using TweakUI.  We use it here with no problems.
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by:sfavilla
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what about using TweakUI.  We use it here with no problems.
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by:EricWestbo
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Yongsing,
  Again this is by design... major security issue to have your server auto logon.  And Braddn is also correct in that you do not need to logon in order for the services to run.

Glad we could help!

/ew
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by:yongsing
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The server needs to run a Java program when it starts up. This is a program I put in the "Startup" menu. If it's not logged in, I don't think that it will run.

Also, I have some tasks under the "Scheduled Tasks" which needs to be run periodically. These tasks are set to run under a particular user account. Without logging in, I don't think that they will be run.

The server will eventually have an Uninterruptible Power Supply. However, in the event of a prolonged power failure, the UPS will not be able to supply the needed power, and the server will be completely shut off. When power is restored, I want the server to boot up and function as normal.

I like sfavilla's suggestion of using TweakUI. I have used it before on Windows NT, but I didn't know that it works just as well on Windows 2000. I would prefer using this program than meddling with the registry.
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by:yongsing
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sfavilla, how do you install TweakUI 1.33 on Windows 2000 Server? There is a tweakui.inf file that needs to be run from the Control Panel. I tried all means but can't get it to install.
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by:EricWestbo
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Yongsing....

With W2K you can pretty much configure everything that Tweak will allow you to configure.  Admin has nearly complete control, so why introduce additional layers here?

I don't have server installed on this machine, but if you check out the link I originally gave you (for W2K pro) and use it as a guideline, I believe you may find what you are looking for.

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;q234562

Again, According to technet, the option to auto boot is not available for Windows 2000 Server or Advanced Server BY DESIGN... however, the information on how to do it in PRO is available & MAY be helpful to you in configuring your server.

In an "expert" capacity, I'd have to advise against trying to auto logon w/server, as you'll be bypassing a security feature designed to protect your system.  That's not to say it can't be done...


/ew
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by:EricWestbo
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Yongsing...

Thinking a little further into how to resolve your issue, have you tried running this script as a Startup Script?  That may allow you to run it prior to logon, which would alleviate the need to auto logon.

Group Policy > Computer Configuration > Windows Settings > Scripts (Startup/Shutdown)


some info:

- http://www.microsoft.com/technet/treeview/default.asp?url=/TechNet/columns/tips/2kscript.asp

- http://support.microsoft.com/directory/article.asp?ID=KB;EN-US;Q243486&


hope this helps!

/ew
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by:braddn
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Eric's definitely got the idea. Also, can't programs be run as a service? If this java program were setup to run as a service that would solve all your problems.
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by:yongsing
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I'll accept this solution. Thanks for your help, guys.
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by:mozkill
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why not use the Windows resource kit?  It has a utility for adding a program as a service, which you can then configure to run at system startup.

By the way, i tried the solutions given above in a new VMWare session, and the registry hack did not work.  Perhaps service pack 3 has changed something?
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