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Modify logon (CTRL-ALT-DEL) screen on Windows Server 2003 R2

Hi folks,

I am catching hell trying to modify the logon (CTRL-ALT-DEL) screen on my Windows Server 2003 R2.  Like others who have asked a similar question, I want to place our unit logo on the screen but I cannot find the default bitmap for "R2".  I am already familiar with the standard procedures for modifying your msgina.dll file and creating a registry entry named ginadll but looking through all of the bitmaps there isn't one for R2.  I can find the "Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition" but without knowing where MS is pulling the R2 logon screen from I am stuck.  Also, adding third party software is out of the question (other than a Resource Hacker) so I am hoping there's a way.

Thanks,
Doug
 
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douglas_moxley
Asked:
douglas_moxley
1 Solution
 
brent_caskeyCommented:
I think that the file that you are looking for is r2brand.dll in c:\windows\system32.

I am checking on this myself to see if I can modify it.
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douglas_moxleyAuthor Commented:
Oh Crap!  That file did contain the logon screen I wanted so modified a copy and pointed my GINADLL registry entry to the file and got locked the hell out!  I was remoting into the server from home so hopefully I can login tomorrow morning at work and fix it.  Apparently the r2brand.dll file doesn't contain all the necessary entries to login with.  Now I am going to be thinking about it all night until I can get in first thing in the morning..
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brent_caskeyCommented:
I just figured it out.

First, you need to modify the r2brand.dll file with Resource Hacker and save it to r2brand2.dll. (This is the easy part - but, remember to keep the same dimensions on the bitmap).

Then, you need to replace the file (which is a bit of a trick with Windows File Protection)

Steps to replace the r2brand.dll file:
1.   copy the r2brand2.dll file into the following 2 folders:
      c:\windows\system32
      c:\windows\system32\dllcache

2.   Next, goto task manager and kill the explorer.exe process

3.   Select the application tab, New task (run) > Browse
      (Not sure if killing explorer.exe is necessary, but it worked for me)

4.   Now we need to change the files (You have to do the dllcache folder first)
      Browse to the c:\windows\system32\dllcache folder and rename the extension on r2brand.dll to .bak
      Rename the r2brand2.dll to r2brand.dll

5.   Then, Browse to the c:\windows\system32 folder and rename the extension on r2brand.dll to .bak
      Rename the r2brand2.dll to r2brand.dll

6.   You will get a message about entering Windows CD / Windows File Protection
      (It noticed we changed something....)

7.   Cancel out of Windows File Protection screen and reboot.
      The logoff screen will show the new logo but, when the computer actually logs off, you see the default one.

8.   When the server comes up though, you will see your new logo.

Let me know how it goes.

(I got locked out of my server too the first time - I was using a Virtual PC with Undo Disks though)
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brent_caskeyCommented:
With the method above, you do not need to do anything with the GINADLL file.

Forgot to mention that...
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douglas_moxleyAuthor Commented:
Brent,

Man, that is some fine work and I'll give it a shot and let you know.  The only scary thing is today my Terminal Server license disappeared on the server, which is the box I did the procedure on, and I had to work with someone in India to issue a new key so I could get the TS up and running.  It's just too coincidental so the small change I made completely hosed up the license.

Thanks again,
Doug
 
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douglas_moxleyAuthor Commented:
Hi Brent,

I cannot get past step 5:

5.   Then, Browse to the c:\windows\system32 folder and rename the extension on r2brand.dll to .bak
      Rename the r2brand2.dll to r2brand.dll

Regardless of what I do I cannot rename the r2brand2.dll to r2brand.dll because it states the file already exists, even though I renamed it everywhere it existed in the prior step.  Even though I kill explorer.exe and restarted the application, somewhere in memory it is holding onto that filename.  I renamed r2brand.dll to r2brand.bak in step 4 and after restarting the explorer.exe program the r2brand.dll file reappears.  For what it's worth, my machine was upgraded so my default folder is WINNT, vice Windows.

Thanks again,
Doug
 
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brent_caskeyCommented:
Are you restarting explorer after step 4 - if so, do not do this... You will need to do both renames while explorer.exe is off.
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brent_caskeyCommented:
If you are on a terminal server, you may need to stop ALL explorer.exe services - So make sure that your users are not logged in.
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brent_caskeyCommented:
The only other thing that I did (which didnt work by itself) was set the following registry key value and reboot:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SOFTWARE\ Microsoft\ Windows NT\ CurrentVersion\ Winlogon

SFCDisable (REG_DWORD) ***(set to 1)***

0 = enabled (default).
1 = disabled, prompt at boot to re-enable (debugger required).
2 = disabled at next boot only, no prompt to re-enable (debugger required).
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douglas_moxleyAuthor Commented:
Hi Brent,

Couldn't get past item 6 because I kept receiving the renaming error vice the Windows File Protection warning.  Ended up having to do it from the console using safe mode - command prompt option.  I truly want to thank you for all of the effort you put into this.  It really makes the logon screen look much better!

Thanks again,
Doug
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andyrobjohnsCommented:
Hello all,

Sorry to bring up and old thread but...

... a far easier way is to replace any references to r2brand.dll in the registry (I found 4 on my 2003 R2 server) with the custom file name for your modified r2brand.dll file! This is what I do for msgina.dll as well and use the GinaDLL string to point to the custom file.

Saves a lot of the messing about with File Protection and what not.

Andy
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TAOSACommented:
Andy,

That's a great idea and I will give it a try as I have a few more servers to modify.  I've closed my douglas_moxley account and now use the one from work.

Thanks!
Doug
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