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Edit proxy settings in Tools, Internet options on a remote computer (from my pc)

Posted on 2009-02-08
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Hi

is it possible to connect to Tools, Internet options, connections, LAN settings for a remote computer? e.g. access these settings for another computer from my pc
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Question by:Mandev23
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Expert Comment

by:Steve
ID: 23582839
there are a few ways of accessing those options..

A) remote control the machine in question by either using Remote Desktop Protocol, or something like VNC / Dameware.

or..

B) If PC is member of Network domain you could change those settings via GroupPolicy and automatically apply them next time that machine logs into the network
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23582862
hi
i'm aware of your options, however ive made a script which a user can click on to disable/enable the proxy, however for some reason when the proxy is disabled next time they log on it doesnt over ride the setting and put the proxy back in place, unless its because im testing via the VPN at the moment...
i want to ensure the user goes via the proxy the next time they log on, just in case they forget to double click the enable proxy bat file..
what about throught my computer, manage??
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Expert Comment

by:global_expert_advice
ID: 23582873
hi,
Yes there are many ways...but will be bit complicated for you to handle or manage.
In short what i understood from you is you want to access other computer from your pc..
well i know one service provider which is quite good, but chargeable... you can see at
www.copilot.com and do a trial test there...
as i'm using this to manage all my clients world wide and giving them prompt service or pc maintenance sitting in my office...
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23582892
i dont think i'll get the opportunity to go down a chargable route for this... but it looks good.
Is there any other way? while i'm on the LAN

i just want to make sure users are not sneekly avoiding not going via the proxy when they should be. quick question, shouldnt GPO over ride the settings anyway?? - during my tests it doesnt seem to be
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Expert Comment

by:Steve
ID: 23582994
why not just setup a transparent proxy then on your router..

eg redirect all port 80 outbound traffic to your proxy server to be served ? that way you dont have to worry about your users..

for example :
http://www.grape-info.com/doc/cisco/router/contents/example-tproxy.html
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23583121
i didnt know about this, what about administrators, will they be affected??

..but shouldnt Group policy over ride any settings when you log in?
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Expert Comment

by:Steve
ID: 23583236
Yes.. transparent proxying will affect everyone.. unless of course you have static IP addresses and can exclude administrators IP's from the redirect..

and yes.. group policy will also override any proxy settings on PC's once they log in (only will affect the members of that policy though, not administrators unless they are members too)..

so there are a couple of options really..
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23583240
the group policy over ride didnt work, or maybe because im testing over the VPN?
i used the script to disable the proxy, disconnected from the VPN and connected back in, and the proxy was still disabled.... ?
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585382
psexec \\remotePC -c -d csript yourscript.vbs

Download PSExec

Use System-Wide Proxy Settings
http://www.pctools.com/guides/registry/detail/1147/

Proxy Server Configuration
http://www.pctools.com/guides/registry/detail/292/

Internet Explorer Control Panel Restrictions (Part 2)*
http://www.pctools.com/guides/registry/detail/797/

*Note the value for ConnectionsTab
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585389
You can further use the bottom reg key in your script to disable the connections button....

The other links are informational. And PSExec will not work for the currently logged in user, unless you are using Computer settings, instead of User settings....

Did you try and Force the GPO by gpupdate on the clients?
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23585458
john

ive downloaded tweak manager, what now?
how do i use this PSExec...? is it connected to Tweak Manager?
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585479
PsExec v1.94
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb897553.aspx

Standalone app from MS (formerly Sysinternals). It is a remote process launcher.It works under the security context of the user launching it locally, and takes those rights to the target PC for authentication. So accessing a locally logged in user wont help, unless you are using Machine Settings......

And I wasnt referring to Tweak Manager, I was referring to those links to incorporate just the IE Connections Tab restrictions in a login script, or custom GPO...

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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23585520
wow, PsExec looks awesome!
does this need to be installed on every pc or..?
so this enables access to remote PC's, and configs etc from my computer???

could i get to tools, internet options, lan settings??  :-)
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585545
No, run from just yours, but your user needs rights to each target....

If you want to load a registry script from yours, or launch any file for that matter, using the -c switch will copy it from your pc, granted it is in the same location as PSEXEC.

For example, if you wanted to merge a HKCU\Software\YourApp reg file to the client, saved as YourApp.Reg....

psexec \\remotepc -c -d yourapp.reg

Heres teh kicker... It will merge it to the user's registry that you launched it with, not the logged on user. Thast why it has to be machine settings....

can even use a .txt file of pcnames to target.....The -d switch tells it not to wait for the app to close on the first machine before moving on to the next one in the list........

psexec @c:\pcnames.txt -c -d yourapp.reg

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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23585570
so for example this script:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings]

"ProxyEnable"=dword:00000001
"ProxyServer"=w2k3rti03:8080

i save it as enable.reg and execute it into the remote pc??  :-)

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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585580
It wont hit the logged in user though...

The one below would make the Connections button inaccessible, so thay cant click it to change it......



Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\
Control Panel] 
"ConnectionsTab"=dword:00000001

Open in new window

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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585589
Try this....



Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings] 
"ProxyEnable"=dword:00000001
"ProxyServer"=w2k3rti03:8080
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings]
"Security_HKLM_only"=dword:00000001

Open in new window

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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585593
Keep in mind, the Proxy Server settings should ideally be enforced by GPO.You can use the Connections Tab reg file to further lock it down..... Can even create a custom GPO for it....
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585596
And make sure to save all .reg files to the location you are launching psexec from, or else youll need to copy it to the local clients...
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23585626
1. copy the reg file to the same folder where psexec is?
2. you are right about using GPO, maybe because im on the VPN, the proxy wouldnt over-ride again once i disabled it using the script.. i'll test this tommorrow..

whats that additional line for you added in the script?

would this do it:
C:\pstools>psexec \\remotepc -c -d enable.reg     . ..... using your script?

i suppose i could test it now on the VPN, server to server or something??
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585641
Save enable.reg to the pstools directory, and it should work fine....
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23585660
i'll definately test this tommorrow..  excellent tool...

do you mind if i keep this question open till tommorrow...
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23585711
sure....
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23588757
John

i exectued this in cmd shell
C:\PsTools>psexec.exe \\w2k3rti03 -c -d remote_IE.reg

this is the contents of the remote_IE.reg which is located in the PsTools folder:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings]
"ProxyEnable"=dword:00000001
"ProxyServer"=w2k3rti03:8080
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings]
"Security_HKLM_only"=dword:00000001


However this is the eror i got:
C:\PsTools>psexec \\w2k3rti03 -c -d remote_IE.reg

PsExec v1.94 - Execute processes remotely
Copyright (C) 2001-2008 Mark Russinovich
Sysinternals - www.sysinternals.com


PsExec could not start remote_IE.reg on w2k3rti03:
The system cannot find the file specified.

C:\PsTools>psexec.exe \\w2k3rti03 -c -d remote_IE.reg

PsExec v1.94 - Execute processes remotely
Copyright (C) 2001-2008 Mark Russinovich
Sysinternals - www.sysinternals.com


PsExec could not start remote_IE.reg on w2k3rti03:
The system cannot find the file specified.

C:\PsTools>
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23597531
Is remote_IE.reg in your local c:\pstools directory?
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23598325
hi,
yes its in the same directory as C:\PsTools

is the script correct? the location of the script require the full UNC path?
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23608486
Copy that file to the remote c:\windows\system32 directory for giggles please....

And the purpose of the -c switch tells it to copy the program over automatically...

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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23608497
Wait a sec....

Put the .reg file on an open network share reachable by all users....

psexec \\w2k3rti03 reg add \\server\share\remote_IE.reg /f

.reg files need ackoledgement to run, prolly why it is failing....

Might be able to do it in a batch file if the unc path doesnt work....
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23609336
hi
I tried this:
C:\PsTools>psexec \\w2k3rti03 \\w2k3rti02\database\remote_IE.reg /f

w2k3rti03 being the server i want to enable the proxy on & \\w2k3rti02\database is where the remote_IE.reg file is sitting on a share

But i got the same error:
PsExec could not start \\w2k3rti02\database\remote_IE.reg on w2k3rti03:
The system cannot find the file specified.

- hope i got the syntax right??
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23611278
psexec \\w2k3rti03 reg add "\\server\share\remote_IE.reg" /f

In case there are spaces in the unc path...
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23611298
hello there

thanks for getting back to me:
this is what i got:

C:\PsTools>psexec \\w2k3rti03 reg add "\\w2k3rti02\database\remote_IE.reg" /f

PsExec v1.94 - Execute processes remotely
Copyright (C) 2001-2008 Mark Russinovich
Sysinternals - www.sysinternals.com

ERROR: Invalid key name.
Type "REG ADD /?" for usage.
reg exited on w2k3rti03 with error code 1.
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23614674
paste the contents of the .reg file here please....

Might need to put it in DOS format....
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23615171
hi
this is the .reg file which is sitting in a network share:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings]
"ProxyEnable"=dword:00000001
"ProxyServer"=w2k3rti03:8080
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings]
"Security_HKLM_only"=dword:00000001

i hope we can get this working, it would really help ....
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Accepted Solution

by:
johnb6767 earned 2000 total points
ID: 23615676
Save the following as IEReg.bat

Lets revert to the local copy over instead of the UNC path....

psexec.exe \\w2k3rti03 -c -d IEReg.bat

Make sure the batch file sets everything properly though on a clean machine first though, before trying remotely...

This should work better than the reg add command.....



@echo off
reg add "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings" /v ProxyEnable /t reg_dword /d 00000001 /f
reg add "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings" /v ProxyServer /t reg_sz /d "w2k3rti03:8080" /f
reg add "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings" /d "Security_HKLM_only" /t reg_dword /v 00000001 /f
exit

Open in new window

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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23616029
it seems to have executed but i'm trying it on a remote Vista PC at the moment, I dont have a windows XP machine switched on at the moment, it hasnt enabled the proxy on the pc?? will it work with vista?

C:\PsTools>psexec.exe \\pcName -c -d IEReg.bat

PsExec v1.94 - Execute processes remotely
Copyright (C) 2001-2008 Mark Russinovich
Sysinternals - www.sysinternals.com

IEReg.bat started on rtiuk033 with process ID 1208.

are we doing it using HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE or local user? is the 0000001 correct?
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Expert Comment

by:johnb6767
ID: 23616362
Those are for IE6 primarily, will have to see for Vista...... HKLM is the route we were going for I believe.....
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23616528
john
got it to work;

changed the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE value to current user
IE7 doesnt have INTERNET SETTINGS IN HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE

.. its done it!
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Expert Comment

by:Steve
ID: 23616631
its not going to work though if the user is using firefox or opera...
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Author Comment

by:Mandev23
ID: 23616761
oh right, looks like i do need to use local machine then?
but local machine values are different, where is internet settings/proxy settings etc. in local machine
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