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How do I allow Multiple RDP Sessions?

Posted on 2008-06-12
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
When we are logged on to the 2008 Server and remote session is started the server session is logged off and the same goes if 2 of us are using RDP.  In windows server 2003 we could have the server logged on and have multiple sessions of RDP without kicking each other off.   I have played with the Group Policy for Terminal Services but have had no luck.
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Question by:ocontoco
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by:adamroman
ID: 21771026
go to start>programs>administrative tools>terminal services>terminal services configuration

Under general settings change "restrict each user to a single session" to NO
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tigermatt earned 125 total points
ID: 21771542
You have several locations where you may need to change a setting in order to allow multiple remote desktop sessions.

The most likely location will be in Group Policy - I suggest you run rsop.msc on the server, then browse to the following container and check whether the policy is applied (or not). After running rsop.msc from the "Search" box on the start menu, go to Computer Configuration, Administrative Templates, Windows Components, Terminal Services and check whether the "Restrict Terminal Services users to a single remote session" setting is Enabled. If it is, note down the policy in which it is enabled, then open that Group Policy and remove the policy.

Alternatively, the other location in which this may be configured is the Terminal Services Manager. This isn't the location I would suspect this is configured - and isn't really the best location for setting it - but to check and possibly remove it, do the following:

Open Terminal Services Configuration. In the console tree, click Server Settings. In the details pane, right-click Restrict each user to one session, and then click Properties. Uncheck the Restrict each user to one session check box, and then click OK.

There's a guide on Technet at http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver/en/library/da5367e2-b506-48e9-8533-f38c28ceb6611033.mspx?mfr=true.

Please remember that the user sessions functionality and Terminal Services is completely revamped in Windows Server 2008. The /console switch which could be used with previous versions of Windows to access the console through RDP will now no longer work, since session 0 is now no longer accessible and interactive for users to actually use (it is just for services to login as). To replace the /console switch is the /admin switch - running mstsc /admin will connect you to the physical console of the server, and when running Terminal Services in Administration Mode (the default, if you have not purchased Terminal Services licenses), you are limited to a maximum of 2 sessions INCLUDING the console. http://blogs.msdn.com/nickmac/archive/2007/11/28/mstsc-console-switch-in-windows-server-2008-and-windows-vista-sp1.aspx

-tigermatt
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by:Netman66
ID: 21771647
There is a Group Policy element that is not defined by default that may be of some use for you.

In the Default Domain Controller Policy:

Computer Config>Admin Templates>Windows Components>Terminal Services>Connections :: Deny logoff of an Administrator logged into the console session.

Enable this policy element.
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Author Comment

by:ocontoco
ID: 21772557
tigermatt - Got a question for you are you saying that if we didnt purchase a TS Licensing that we can only have 2 sessions including the console?  Which means only one rdp session is allowed - correct?
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by:Netman66
ID: 21772630
Yes, only 2 connections are allow for RDP in Admin mode.

In Application mode, you pay per TS CAL.

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by:ocontoco
ID: 21772885
I've used the Group Policies for Terminal Services is there way to restrict RDP session from being able to disconnect the console session?  I have enabled the Deny logoff of Administrator but its not working correctly because it still gives the rdp session user the ability to force the log off.
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by:tigermatt
ID: 21772906
Run an rsop.msc from the Search box on the Start Menu, examine the output and ensure the policy is actually being applied.

AS for the licensing - you can only have a maximum of 2 user logins (including the console) if you use Terminal Services in Remote Administration mode. As I said above this differs from Server 2003, where you could have 3 logins - console and two RDP.

-tigermatt
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by:ocontoco
ID: 21772925
I have done this already and it is set.  Could this be because the consule and the rdp session are using the adminstrator login?
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by:tigermatt
ID: 21772934
Ah, that is probably why. If you try another user then I doubt it will happen.
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by:ocontoco
ID: 21772968
I  just test this and this is not true I use my actual user which is a domain admin and it still let me disconnect the adminstrators session.
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by:tigermatt
ID: 21773180
I think it's because you have Administrator rights over the server (since you're a Domain Admin) you are still able to force the user to log off. The GPO isn't going to apply to an Administrator because they have elevated rights to just log off another logged in user using another method if necessary.

From what I can see that GPO is only actually going to apply to non-Administrator user accounts.
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