Opening up an application on a local PC from a Remote Desktop application

We have an MS Access application that sits on a hosted server, with users accessing the application via Windows RDP.  This works fine, but I was wondering if I could run an application on the users local PC.  For example, have a button on the Access application that opens up Outlook on their local PC.
Andy BrownDeveloperAsked:
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Andrew LeniartEE Senior Editor & Independent IT ConsultantCommented:
have a button on the Access application that opens up Outlook on their local PC.

That's not possible to do when using Windows RDP to my knowledge Andy.
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Éric MoreauSenior .Net ConsultantCommented:
The session opened in RDP is a kind of sandbox. Other than the features allowed by the RDP envelop (like copy and paste, print locally) the session has no interaction with the local computer (and vice versa)
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Andrew LeniartEE Senior Editor & Independent IT ConsultantCommented:
I concur. As I said, it's just not possible to do what the author wants to achieve, unfortunately.
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Jim Dettman (Microsoft MVP/ EE MVE)President / OwnerCommented:
<< For example, have a button on the Access application that opens up Outlook on their local PC.>>

   There are a few ways you can do that.    PSExec.exe  is one such.   That would allow you to execute another program easily enough.   But you'd have no capability to interact with it.

   Another would be to setup an RPC calls, but that would take some doing.

Jim.
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Gustav BrockCIOCommented:
It is. But you need to create a dll that runs on the remote side and, when called, opens a custom RDP channel.

Albert Kallal  has done this (not with us at EE) but that is custom code he probably is not able to pass.
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Andy BrownDeveloperAuthor Commented:
OK - just a thought.  Users have a local folder that the RDP can see (it's how they add files to the server).  If I created a batch file on the fly - could I run it from the RDP?
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Andy BrownDeveloperAuthor Commented:
Thanks guys - I'll take a look at those over the next day.
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Gustav BrockCIOCommented:
Yes. The Shell command is for that.
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ITguy565Commented:
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Andy BrownDeveloperAuthor Commented:
That's certainly worth a look - thank you.
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Jim Dettman (Microsoft MVP/ EE MVE)President / OwnerCommented:
Note that remote apps is nothing more than a RDP shortcut to a specific app.   I don't see how it would help with running something locally.

Jim.
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it_saigeDeveloperCommented:
As Jim and Gustav have both stated, yes you can run local applications from an RDP session.  The least-effort-required-way is to use PSExec.  The only requirement is determining the target machine.  While I personally have never used a Custom RDP Channel, I did develop a client/server bridge which would do the following.

A service is installed on the local client which act's as a listener and launcher (has to impersonate the local active user session to ensure that the application is launched with the user's local rights).  This service is non-interactive with the desktop but used named pipes to communicate with a desktop application.

When an RDP session is started by the client, a client application starts in the RDP session which set's up a communications pipe.  I used a standard TCP/IP connection but did not make it to be NAT savvy.  This limits the communications to the local network.

At this point, the RDP client is then responsible for launching the local application on demand.

-saige-
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Andy BrownDeveloperAuthor Commented:
Thank you, everyone, for the advice/suggestions.  Jim's suggestion might be the one, but upon further thought - I'm going to try to avoid doing anything on the local PC as it may cause more support headaches than I need.

Thank you all once again - a superb effort (as always).

Andy
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