Windows Server 2012 Essentials RWA - Add Terminal Servers

Posted on 2014-01-29
Last Modified: 2014-01-30
I just recently migrated from my SBS 2003 server to Essentials 2012.  Things are working out pretty well, but I still have one major hurdle to overcome.

I have two internal Server 2003 servers running Terminal Services, and my 2008R2 has the TS and RDS CAL and is the license manager.  They still work, and the 2008R2 evens passes licenses off to the 2012 RDS Host with RemoteApps I created...but I need an easy way for my end users to connect to the terminal servers.

Other than just telling them to connect to the VPN and using the RDC, is there anyway to get my 2 Windows 2003 servers listed on the RWA Portal?  They can connect to the RDWeb page and type in the server name...but let's pretend my end-users are technologically challenged.


1) I migrated from SBS 2003 to 2012 essentials, works great!
2) I have 2 windows 2003 terminal servers that I remote users need to access through the new portal
3) Users aren't smart enough to remember the computer name they are supposed to connect to...need a very simple solution, like the list used to be on SBS 2003.

Question by:cjake2299
  • 4
LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Olaf De Ceuster
ID: 39820068
If you have a hardware router all you have to do is forward all traffic on a certain port to the internal IP address of the server.
Your users will just use your external DNS name or external IP or DYNDNS name  on port say 3390 to get to server 1 and  external DNS name or external IP or DYNDNS name  on port 3391 to get to server 2.

They would RDP to: 111.222.333.444:3390  (Rdp to external ip on port 3390 and in the router you would port forward all traffic from port 3390 to port 3389 to the internal IP address of one of the servers.

Internally you can just RDP to internal IP address or DNS name of the TS servers
Hope that makes sense?
If does not make sense you should get someone to help you.
Hope that helps,

Author Comment

ID: 39821458
They can RDP just fine, that's not the issue.  I appreciate the help, but I'm trying to enable a feature that was similar on SBS 2003 for the application sharing server, that allowed for remote TS Session to be created through the web browser without the user having to open up the MS Terminal Services Client and connect.  

The Web Browser method is far simpler for the end-users, but the 2012 RDWeb requires the user to type in the name of the server, where the SBS 2003 listed all of the application sharing servers that the user could connect to.
LVL 12

Accepted Solution

Gary Coltharp earned 500 total points
ID: 39821493
I beliebe this article covers what you are asking:

The short answer is, the web page for RDWeb would need to be modified by someone with the expertise to either manually specify the terminal servers or do an AD cutom attribute lookup.

RDWeb simply wasnt designed to work that way.


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Author Comment

ID: 39821647
It looks like modifying the desktop.aspx file for RDWeb and changing the text box to a pre-populated drop-down might be my best choice at this juncture.  I'll give it a try, and if it works I'll share what modifications I made here so others can benefit from it to.

Author Comment

ID: 39822046
Found instructions on modifying the desktops.aspx page to include a drop-down list of servers (but can be used for workstations as well).

Author Closing Comment

ID: 39822057
found another link that provided instructions for modifying the web page.  I use AD to control who can log into which servers, so populating all the servers doesn't affect my the coding was fairly straight forward once I understood what it was I needed.

Not the greatest work around, but I tested it several times and it is already in production and being used, so it was pretty straight forward.

Thanks for the guidance!

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