Get Windows 8 Metro style UI in Windows 7 using Mosaic

Get Windows 8 Metro style UI in Windows 7 using Mosaic

We have earlier posted that you can get Windows 8 metro UI in windows 7 using Omnimo 4 , recently another utility has been released on net named Mosaic which allows you to get Windows 8 style tiles on Windows 7 desktop.
Mosaic (previously known as Metro Home 2) is an application that brings Metro UI to your desktop. It is a set of live widgets that shows some content from the web or from your PC.Mosaic supports WPF and HTML widgets. Currently HTML widgets has some restrictions: they are visible only in fullscreen mode, there are some problems with input.Currently some widgets are just link to something (e.g. video or desktop or control panel) but in future they could get more functions.
Currently Mosaic is in alpha stages and is very unstable, here are the some tips for using it-
  • To open Mosaic menu move mouse cursor to the right border of screen and click. This could not work if your taskbar placed on the right or left or you have more than one monitor.
  • To add widgets open Mosaic menu click on the Widgets… icon and choose widget
  • To remove widget click on widget icon in Widgets menu again
  • By default widgets are shown over your windows and can be covered by them. There is fullscreen mode in the Mosaic options which makes Mosaic to cover whole screen
  • If your widgets covered by windows just click on the right border of screen and they will quickly bring to front
  • Some widgets has options which can be accessed through context menu
  • If widgets animation annoys you, you can disable it in Mosaic options
  • "Me" widget shows your avatar from Windows. You can change it by dr
Download Here



How to install Windows 8 on VMware virtual machine

How to install Windows 8 on VMware virtual machine
We have seen couple of Windows 8 leaks by now and most of you may like to test it.Installing and reinstalling may be a tedious task so today we would like to write a tutorial as how to install Windows 8 on VMware virtual machine which would ease your work.
First of all the minimum system configuration of Windows 8 is similar to Windows 7 so you should atleast have the following configurations-
  • 1 GHz or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
  • 1 GB RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
Here are the steps to install Windows 8 on VMWare Virtual machine-
  • First of all you need to have Windows 8 build which you have to install on virtual machine.
  • Download VMware player from here or from here. After downloading VMWare player just install it.VMWare can be installed on Windows XP,Windows Vista or Windows 7.
  • Select Create a New Virtual Machine option from the list
Create a New Virtual Machine

  • Now choose Installer disk image file (iso) and browse for the Windows 8 image file
Installer disk image

  • In the next menu select Microsoft Windows as operating system and Windows 7 x64 if you are installing Windows 8 x64 or select Windows 7 if installing 32 bit version.
installing Windows 8 x64

  • In the next menu leave the Windows Product key empty and just enter the name and password (optional).
Windows Product key

  • Set the name of the Virtual machine and browse the location where you want to install it ( select where you have average 40 GB free when installing Windows 8 x64)
Virtual machine

  • In the next menu enter the maximum disk-size, prefer to keep it minimum as 40 GB
maximum disk-size

  • In the next menu click on Customize Hardware and modify the memory if installing Windows 8 x64. Keep the memory minimum as 2 GB. You could also change the number of cores depending on your processor.
  • Finally click on Finish button and your Windows 8 installation on Virtual machine would start

Get Windows 8 Tablet UI in Windows 7 using "Omnimo 4"

Get Windows 8 Tablet UI in Windows 7 using "Omnimo 4"
We have seen Microsoft previewing the new Windows 8 UI in D9 and Computex 2011. Today the Deviantart user fediaFedia has released Omnimo 4 for Rainmeter which allows you to transform Windows Vista/Windows 7 to the newly unveiled Windows 8 Tablet UI.
Windows 8 transformation
Omnimo is a multifunctional interactive desktop information center based on rainmeter. This suite will turn your desktop into a productive and attractive workarea , delivering only the information you need. Every interactive tile gives you information at a glance, and can be easily customized to your needs.
Here are the steps to install Omnimo 4 on Windows Vista/Windows 7-
  1. In order to use Omnimo, you need to have Rainmeter 2.0 or higher installed. Some features like Aero Glass, NowPlaying and Twitter functionality require Rainmeter 2.1 BETA. You can get them here
  2. After installing Rainmeter download Omnimo 4 from here
  3. Double click on the Setup.rmskin file, it should install everything automatically and you will be greeted by the Intro.
After installation, select your settings and then the theme+resolution to apply the optimum layout. Don’t worry if your desktop resolution is not included, you can move things around to your liking anyway.

Unlock Windows 8 build 7955 features using RedPill tool

Unlock Windows 8 build 7955 features using RedPill tool
Windows 8 build 7955 has been leaked and folks at MDL forums are unlocking the new features in this build. A MDL forum user has posted a new hack which allows you to unlock couple of features in Build 7955 which includes the pattern login and the Metro UI.
Here are the complete set of features which can be unlocked using RedPill Tool
  • Metro Login
  • New Task Manager
  • Immersive Browser
  • Pattern Login
To unlock the features, the following steps has to be followed-
  1. Run the InstallTakeOwnership registry file. It would add Take Ownership button on the right click.
  2. Take Ownership of system32\slc.dll and system32\systemcpl.dll and rename them to something else
  3. Now simply copy the three dll files from the zip file to system32 folder.
You can download the file from here

windows task manager
Note: Modifying System files is a risky task and should only be performed on test machine. We don’t take any responsibility for the subsequences.

How to Install Windows 8 from USB flash drive

How to Install Windows 8 from USB flash drive

Windows 8 build 7850 has recently been leaked and most of you would like to install it. You can install it by writing the image file to a DVD but here we are going to explain how to install Windows 8 from a USB Flash Drive. We have tested 2 methods and both of them work fine.
First the System Requirements
  • 4GB removable USB flash drive
  • A Windows 8 ISO file
  • Windows XP SP2, Windows Vista, or Windows 7 (32-bit or 64-bit)
Method 1
In this method we would be using the command prompt method to make a bootable USB Flash Drive.
Step 1: Run the DiskPart utility by typing diskpart at the Start menu search box.
Step 2: Run the list disk command to check the status of your drive.
Step 3: Run select disk 1 where the "1" is actually the corresponding number of your USB drive.
Step 4: Run clean.
Step 5: Once the thumb drive is clean,run create partition primary.
Step 6: Make the partition active by entering active
Step 7: Run the command format fs=NTFS quick to format the USB Flash Drive
Step 8: Run the assign command which gives the USB drive a drive letter
Step 9: Extract the Windows 8 ISO file using the WinRAR utility
Step 10: Now copy the contents of the file from extracted ISO file to USB flash drive 
Method 2
This is the simpler method and we would be using Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool to install Windows 8.
Step 1: Download Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool from here and install it.
Step 2: Run the tool and in the SOURCE FILE box, type the name and path of your Windows 8 ISO file, or click BROWSE and select the file from the OPEN dialog box. Click NEXT.
Step 3: Select USB DEVICE to create a copy on a USB flash drive.
Step 4: If you are copying the file to a USB flash drive, select your USB device in the drop-down list and click BEGIN COPYING.
Only 4 steps were required and your bootable USB flash drive would be ready.
Once completed you would see the USB Flash drive with the icon as shown in the image below.
After you have created a Bootable USB flash drive change the BOOT order in BIOS to boot from your USB drive first

Download Windows 8 based theme for Windows 7

Download Windows 8 based theme for Windows 7

As more information about Windows 8 is being leaked, guys have started creating concept wallpapers, themes for the next version of Windows. Even our friends at Windows Valley have created a wonderful Windows 8 based theme for Windows 7. The theme has 4 wallpapers displaying the leaked Windows logo with Microsoft tag line “Be what’s next.”

Windows 8 theme

You can download the theme from here


What is a Windows 8 PC?

What is a Windows 8 PC?

Though the iPad got the ball rolling, Windows 8 may be the catalyst that finally brings about the "post-PC" era, as Apple likes to call it (and others prefer not to).
While many digirati were attending a conference in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., I was further down the coast in San Diego attending a less glamorous but hardly less important Qualcomm conference. Qualcomm is, after all, the enormously profitable company (with a market cap just shy of $100 billion, rivaling Intel, which is at about $115 billion) that supplies the guts of many of the world's feature phones, smartphones, and, increasingly, tablets.
Chips it designs essentially define the hardware and performance of the phones many people use. Qualcomm's role in the phone industry is analogous to Intel's in the PC industry. (Qualcomm said at the conference that 250 future devices are being designed around its "Snapdragon" processor.)
Which brings us to the future Windows 8 PC. Qualcomm chimed in this week, saying it will build quad-core Snapdragon processors for Windows 8 devices, in addition to the dual-core chips it is beginning to supply now for tablets like HP's upcoming TouchPad.
"This will require high-performing, low-power processors...with features like 3G and 4G wireless wide area network (WWAN) connectivity," Qualcomm said in its Windows 8 statement Wednesday.
When Qualcomm speaks about Windows, people should listen. As Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs is always quick to point out, Qualcomm is the exclusive supplier of processor silicon for all Windows Phone 7 devices.
So, with Qualcomm and others set to supply high-performance ARM processors for Windows 8, what will these Qualcomm-powered Windows 8 devices be exactly? Jacobs gave us a hint this week. "You will see some clamshell looking devices. Some of them will be convertible. Some of them will be just tablets. We're going to see a wide range of stuff going on," he said at press conference on Wednesday.
Though Jacobs was referring to products coming out later this year and early next year, similar design themes will apply to Windows 8 devices.
What will a Windows 8 PC be? A few rough ideas:

  • A 2.5GHz quad-core ARM chip-based Windows 8 tablet?
  • Newfangled Windows 8 tablet-centric hybrid with slider keyboard?
  • Motorola Atrix smartphone-with-laptop-dock kind of device?
  • Tried-and-true clamshell laptop sporting a high-performance ARM chip?
I say all of the above will be a PC, if that's the primary device you do most of your personal computing on, including lots of business productivity apps like Microsoft's Office suite. Along these lines, a comment at one of the technical sessions at the Qualcomm conference stuck with me: many young people in the future may skip the traditional PC all together. They may grow up using a device that bears little resemblance to today's laptop.
Windows 8 interface
For more on Windows 8's interface, see the Microsoft video, Building Windows 8.
(Credit: Micorosft)
Intel will contribute to this, too. Intel's next-generation Haswell chip design--due roughly in the same time frame that Windows 8 appears--will be the company's first system-on-a-chip, or SoC, for mainstream laptops. An SoC is the same kind of all-in-one chip design Qualcomm uses today for feature phones, smartphones, and tablets. And, by the way, it's what Apple uses in its iPhone and iPad.
That means Intel also subscribes to a very different kind of future PC design. And with Qualcomm, Microsoft, Google, and others like Nvidia behind this, Post-PC or not, the PC will look very different for a lot of people.


Question: What is Windows 8?

Question: What is Windows 8?

Microsoft expects to come out with the next version of Windows in 2012.  Rumors are that it will be called Windows 8, although Microsoft says it has not been named yet, that it is just the next Windows.  However Steve Ballmer, the head of Microsoft called it Windows 8 in a speech in Japan recently.
   Microsoft says it will be a friendlier version of windows and use more natural language ways of doing work on it.  They expect to integrate more abilities to let you speak to it and work with it in a more natural way.
   The are expected to put these features in Bing (their search engine that has grown tremendously in the last year or two and is starting to challenge Google) and also integrate the abilities of Bing more in Windows. 
   Many of these big items are what we also see Google doing with their search engine and their browser Chrome and expected in the Chrome operating system  which some expect to challenge windows but will be a operating system that works in the cloud (on the Internet) and is not installed on your computer.  
   Google has had Google Apps out for several years which work on the cloud also, you do not install them, you use them thru your Internet connection.  Likewise Microsoft is moving a version of Office to the cloud to compete and it is call Office 365 and is available in beta.  My experience using it is that it has a low learning curve if you already know Office and that it will offer most items people use.
   The trend is toward storing and running everything on the cloud which means that programs and your data is not stored on your computer but somewhere out there on the Internet.  The two major limitations I see is that if everything is on the cloud and your Internet connection fails you cannot do anything and that if the place with your applications and data has a failure the same problem and second is that  if that location loses their equipment for what ever reason you are dependent on them having done backups and being able to recover quickly.  However the cloud concept is growing.  My online classes are taught using software in Indiana and San Jose California and to a degree I am dependent on both keeping the data back upped and secure although I do backup and download my Angel data regularly, but Cisco does not have that option for  me.
   We are moving thru another shift in computing as the cloud grows in use and toward more natural language devices.  Another exciting time to see what man can do in developing machines.


Are you looking for Windows 8 training?

 Are you looking for Windows 8 training?

Currently, a ultimate chronicle of Microsoft Windows handling complement is Windows 7. Some people had worry regulating this chronicle when it was primary introduced. There were a couple of reasons for such a problem.
One of them is a miss of correct training. The stream version, Windows 7 does have most assistance functions for a ultimate user. Microsoft additionally set up assorted online tutorials as well as videos to assistance users. Nevertheless, most users still face a little problems due to a a little of encryptions, that were used in a handling system.
Windows 8 is approaching to be strictly launched during a center of 2012. Nevertheless, beta contrast will be carried out during a center as well as finish of subsequent year. Right now, there is no central Windows 8 training yet as set up by Microsoft Corporation. The CEO of Microsoft, Steve Ballmer is approaching to give a little discernment in to this destiny chronicle of handling complement subsequent month in 2011.
The primary or formulation theatre of Windows 8 beta contrast is approaching to be expelled somewhere during a center of subsequent year. If we check out a worldwide web then, we might come opposite most materials for Windows 8 training online. The growth phase, that focuses especially upon corrections as well as adjustments, is approaching to be expelled to a open during a finish of subsequent year. It is most appropriate to try your palm during both a stages.
You can be rebuilt to a little border when it comes to regulating a tangible chronicle of Windows 8. This chronicle additionally incorporates Internet Explorer 9 as well as Windows Live Wave 5 in to a handling system. Both Internet Explorer 9 as well as Windows Live Wave 5 have been not upon a marketplace yet. They would be expelled together with Windows 8.
By guidance in allege as most we can, we would not have most worry when a time comes to download as well as operate all these versions. Another great good of Windows 8 training is feedback. After regulating any of a online videos as well as tutorials for training purposes, we can give a little profitable feedback to Microsoft. During a growth stage, feedback would be critical to Microsoft for adjusting any flaws or failures.
In short, there have been a couple of benefits of Windows 8 training online for mechanism users. You can have great operate of tutorials, videos as well as alternative materials to give profitable feedback to Microsoft for mending Windows 8 prior to a estimated central launch in 2012. Since this handling complement additionally includes alternative ultimate versions of software, it is most appropriate to sense as most as probable in allege rsther than than watchful for a final minute.

WordPress SEO Tips

WordPress is one of the famous blogging software in the world, its wide variety range of plugins and compatibility support the blogger to turn their blog in to the living things, I suggest everyone to go with WordPress, because of its compatibility for search engine optimization, it supports a number of plugins which can optimize your website for search engines crawlers. This tutorial is all about how-to optimize your WordPress blog for search engines, this is WordPress SEO Tips.
There are many ways you can optimize your WordPress blog, like using plugins tweaking the design and many more. This tutorial covers the entire concepts and make your blog ready for SEO.
wordpress seo Wordpress SEO Tips

WordPress SEO:

  1. Using proper “Title” tags in the page. Your title should look like this…
  2. php wp_title (”); ?>
  3. Meta keywords and descriptions for each post, All in one SEO plugin will take care of this thing.
  4. SEO friendly URL structure, by default your WordPress comes with ?p=104. This type of URL’s not good for search engine bots. The recommended URL structures are..
  5. http://example.com/category/your-article-title/ http://example.com/your-article-title/ http://example.com/2011/02/20/your-article-title/
  6. Use proper redirections for your pages, in case if you have deleted or moved anything, stop the 404′s, that will embarrass the visitors. You can use Redirections plugin to avoid this kind of 404′s and 301 error issues.
  7. Force your visitor to stay for more time, show the related topics to the visitor. You can YARPP plugin.
  8. Use SEO friendly images, use ALT and TITLE tags for all the images in your blog and blog posts. You can use SEO friendly images plugin.
  9. Stop using STOP WORDS in the title and URL. The rule of thumb is saying that, you stop using the words like “is, and, are, but” etc. You can use SEO slugs to avoid the stop words.
  10. Your theme structure is another important thing, means..your post title must have

    tag, try to have one h1 and h2 tags at least.

  11. Add descriptions to your categories, most of the time webmasters ignore this important thing. Add description for every category.
  12. Show your website structure to the visitors and as well as search engines, showing the navigation will improve your SERP rankings more..In order to show the structure and navigation of a post you can use Yoast Breadcrumb.
  13. Noindex, follow your archives and search pages etc, nofollow ancillary links. Here you can use Robots meta plugin.
  14. Compress your images using smushit plugin for faster loading.
  15. Improve your blog speed using W3 Total Cache plugin.
  16. Improve backlinks for your posts using Auto bookmarking submissions plugin.
  17. Make your font style simple and readable for your visitors, don’t use fancy fonts.
I hope you have learned about WordPress SEO, let me know your opinion on this post in the comments section below.

Free Premium WordPress Themes Download

Premium WordPress themes are nowadays more popular, WordPress is one of the favorite blogging software for all the bloggers, because it supports wide variety of features, plugins and themes. To make money, lots of people are selling out many themes with nice look and feel but i don’t want to charge anything to my pretty visitors, these below premium WordPress themes are for free, have it for free but for the token of appreciation please leave a footer link..Please let me know your comments and suggestions.

Free Premium WordPress Themes:

PressMagik Premium WordPress Theme download:

pressmagik premium wordpress theme Free Premium Wordpress Themes Download 

Theme Features:
  • Corporate and Professional Look
  • User Friendly Navigation
  • Included Plugins support.
  • Fully Search Engine Friendly ( After all it is designed by me icon smile Free Premium Wordpress Themes Download )
  • Optimized for all the search engines.
  • Clean Style look and Theme customization options included
  • Faster loading, because most of the content is written in CSS, I mean styles.
  • Automatic Thumbnail creation for blogs posts.
  • Thumbnail Dimensions Configuration via Theme Options
  • Built-in FeedBurner/Twitter/Google Buzz/Facebook Support
  • Threaded comments.
  • Widget ready.
  • Gravatar Ready.
  • Drop-down Menu Navigation
  • Cross-Browsers Compatibility (IE6/7/8, Firefox, Safari…)
  • Image/Text Logo Switcher + Custom Logo Support.
  • Custom Search Included.

Live Demo Download PressMagik WordPress Theme

FantasticMagik Premium WordPress Theme Download:

Fantasticmagik premium wordpress theme Free Premium Wordpress Themes Download 

Theme Features:
  • Corporate and Professional Look
  • User Friendly Navigation
  • Included Plugins support.
  • Fully Search Engine Friendly ( After all it is designed by me )
  • Optimized for all the search engines.
  • Clean Style look and Theme customization options included
  • Faster loading, because most of the content is written in CSS, I mean styles.
  • Automatic Thumbnail creation for blogs posts.
  • Thumbnail Dimensions Configuration via Theme Options
  • Built-in FeedBurner/Twitter/Google Buzz/Facebook Support
  • Threaded comments.
  • Widget ready.
  • Gravatar Ready.
  • Drop-down Menu Navigation
  • Cross-Browsers Compatibility (IE6/7/8, Firefox, Safari…)
  • Image/Text Logo Switcher + Custom Logo Support.
  • Custom Search Included.

Live Demo Download Fantastic Magik WordPress Theme

Please let me know your feedback about this post…

powerpoint for kids

powerpoint for kids

Let's face it. PowerPoint is cool. If you do it right, it can spice up your speech or classroom presentation. PowerPoint can help your classmates understand your main ideas, not to mention impress your teacher.

However, many people "clutter it up" by putting everything, including the kitchen sink, into their PowerPoint presentations. Instead of clutter, aim for creativity and simplicity.  
Keep It Simple Sam (KISS)
    • If you are new to PowerPoint, the easiest way to start is to open up the PowerPoint program and click on one of the design templates. The templates have a predetermined color scheme and font size. You simply plug in your text and artwork. Once you have some experience using the program, you can branch out on your own. You can customize your color scheme, the type and speed of the transitions between slides, and even insert custom animation. Spend some time exploring the program and experimenting before you put together your actual presentation.
      Once you understand the basics of your PowerPoint program, there are a few guidelines to keep in mind. Pick a simple, easy-to-read font style and use it throughout your entire presentation. Make sure the font size is large enough to be seen easily by the people sitting in the back of the room. Choose a light-colored background and a dark color for your text. Incorporate lots of "white space" on each slide. White space is simply empty space.
      Most people try to put too much stuff (text and/or pictures) on each slide. Audiences don't like this. They feel overwhelmed and begin to "tune out." Each slide should contain only one idea and the supporting points for that idea. Think of it as the "1 x 1" rule. For example, don't put the stages of photosynthesis and the factors influencing photosynthesis on one slide. Split it into two separate slides. This allows for lots of white space, and you have room to make the font size large.
      Use bullets or dashes and short phrases for your text instead of complete sentences. For example, say, "Three Branches of Government: -Executive,
      -Legislative, -Judicial." Don't say, "There Are Three Branches of Government."
      Use a chart or a graph to display statistics (numerical facts). People understand pictures better than words. Again, one chart per slide is best.

    Art and Images

    • Now it is time to get creative. The artwork that accompanies your text is important. The 1 x 1 rule is helpful here too. Make sure your pictures have a purpose and are not simply decorative. Do they clarify the text? Do they match the style of the text and the tone of your presentation? For example, don't use cartoon clip art in a serious presentation. You can also add music or sound effects if they don't detract from your message.
      There are lots of places to find photos and video clips. However, make sure they are "royalty free." Royalty free means you have permission to use the photo or clip and you don't have to worry about committing plagiarism. Here are just a few sites where you can obtain royalty free images: photos.com, istockphoto.com and openstockphotography.org. You can find other similar sites by doing an Internet search for "royalty free images."
      If you keep it simple and unleash your creativity, you can create PowerPoint presentations that really pack a punch.

How to Add Looping Video Backgrounds to PowerPoint

There has been a lot of discussion about how to add moving video and video backgrounds for use in a PowerPoint presentation. Many PowerPoint users want to be able to incorporate a video background into their presentation and add text and/or graphics over the video background. The problem is that PowerPoint doesn't come out of the box with a way to do this. So users must learn how to do this on their own using some video encoding techniques as well as using a third-party plugin that allows the integration of video backgrounds into PowerPoint. The following are four easy steps for adding video backgrounds to PowerPoint.

    Moderately Easy

Things You'll Need

    PowerPoint Software
    Looping Video Background(s)
    Digital Encoding Software
    Crystal Graphics PowerPlugs: Video Backgrounds Plugin

        1. Convert your video background video clip(s) to a format supported by PowerPoint: AVI, MPEG and WMV are all supported by PowerPoint. Typically if you purchased a video background from one of the leading video background websites, the file(s) will be delivered in QuickTime format. You'll need to convert the QuickTime file (or whatever format you purchased and/or downloaded) to one that works within PowerPoint. We recommend Windows Media files (WMV) because it is made and supported by Microsoft, who also makes PowerPoint.
        2. Use Microsoft's Windows Media Encoder or Flip4mac.com WMV Studio to convert your QuickTime file(s) to WMV

        You will need to use video encoding software to convert your original video background file (i.e., QuickTime) to a format that is supported by PowerPoint (i.e., WMV). Here are two leading video encoding software programs that can do the job for you:

        Microsoft's Windows Media Encoder

        Flip4mac.com WMV Studio for Mac
        3. Create your new WMV video background clip(s) using these specifications:

        Using your video encoding software of choice, choose the encoding settings based on the following specifications (generally the following specs will offer the most reliable and smooth playback within PowerPoint):

        640 x 480 resolution, 4:3 (Currently this offers the most stable playback. If using 16:9 source material you'll need to convert the 16:9 video to 4:3 letterbox when converting to 640x480).

        15 fps (frames per second)

        Medium to High Video Quality

        Test different settings to get the quality and performance you're looking for. The settings you choose will depend on the speed of your computer.
        4. Use a video background player plugin to import and play your WMV video background clips within PowerPoint.

        There are two leading options to choose from in the marketplace for PowerPoint® video background plugins. Each allows users to import WMV video (and other formats) into PowerPoint® and add text over the video.

        The last step (and the "secret" one many users don't know about) is purchasing and installing a third-party plugin that allows the video background to be added as a layer within a PowerPoint® presentation.


Configuring NAT on Linux Hosts

Configuring NAT on Linux Hosts
Unfortunately, VMware Server on Linux currently lacks a user friendly equivalent of the Windows Manage Virtual Networks tool, instead requiring the manual editing of the /etc/vmware/vmnet8/nat/nat.conf file (keeping in mind that the vmnet8 name will need to be changed if the settings are to be configured for a custom created virtual network).
The nat.conf file contains a number of different sections, each allowing a different aspect of the NAT device to be configured:


  • ip - The IP address of the NAT device on the virtual network. By default this will be .2 where the is the subnet address assigned to the virtual network (for example,
  • netmask - The subnet mask to be used for the NAT device.
  • configport - The port to be used for accessing information about the NAT device. By default this directive is commented out with a # character for security purposes and is supposedly only for use by VMware Inc's technical support staff.
  • device - The VMnet virtual network switch to which the NAT device is attached.
  • activeFTP - A value of 1 indicates that active FTP sessions (i.e connections initiated by remote FTP servers) are supported. A setting of 0 limits connections to passive sessions.


  • timeout - The amount of time, in seconds, to keep UDP mapping for the NAT device. This is essentially the amount of time for which the NAT device remembers which virtual machine initiated a specific UDP based connection with an external system. If the external system responds after the timeout period has elapsed, the NAT will no longer know to which virtual machine the data should be forwarded, and the UDP packet will be discarded.


The [incomingtcp] section of the nat.conf file is used to configure TCP port forwarding. This essentially involves mapping an incoming TCP port on the host to the IP address and TCP port of a virtual machine. For example, to map data coming into TCP port 8080 on the host to port 80 on a virtual machine with an IP address of, the following directive would need to be entered into the [incomingtcp] section of the configuration file:
8080 =
As many TCP port forwarding directives as necessary may added to this section of the NAT configuration file.


The [incomingudp] section of the nat.conf file is used to configure UDP port forwarding. Similar to the [incomingtcp]] section, this essentially involves mapping an incoming UDP port on the host to the IP address and UDP port of a virtual machine. For example, to map data coming into UDP port 8081 on the host to port 8082 on a virtual machine with an IP address of, the following directive would need to be entered into the [incomingudp] section of the configuration file:
8081 =
As many port UDP forwarding directives as necessary may added to this section of the NAT configuration file.

VMware Server NAT Configuration

VMware Server NAT Configuration
Network Address Translation (NAT) is a mechanism whereby a number of different computers, typically on a private internal network, are represented by a single external IP address. When one of the clients on the private network communicates with a remote system it does so through a NAT device which modifies the data to make it appear that it has been sent from the shared NAT IP address. When the remote system responds, the NAT device directs the response to the original client that initiated the connection.
In physical network environments, NAT serves two primary purposes. Firstly, it helps to conserve the limited number of class A and B IPv4 IP addresses. Using NAT, an entire enterprise with many thousands of computer systems can operate on the internet using up only one unique public IP address by assigning private IP addresses to the internal clients and using NAT to have them all represented by a single external IP address. Secondly, in the general belief that the less a potential intruder knows about an internal network the better, NAT also provides an additional level of security by hiding the internal IP addresses of computer systems behind the external IP address.
In the context of VMware Server, a NAT based virtual network allows an entire private network to be created within the VMware Server environment, all participants of which are represented by a single IP address, i.e that of the host computer.

How VMware Server based NAT Works 
Both the NAT device and any virtual machines connected to the default NAT virtual network use the vmnet8 virtual network switch. Also attached to this virtual switch is the VMware internal DHCP server which can be used to assign dynamic IP addresses, gateway and DNS information to the virtual machines on the NAT based network.
When a virtual machine sends a packet, the NAT device changes the source address (that of the virtual machine) to the address of the host computer before transmitting it to its intended destination. When the recipient responds, the NAT device modifies the packet so that it is addressed to the IP address of the virtual machine which initiated the connection, and subsequently forwards it to that system on the virtual network.
Unless some form of port forwarding is configured on the NAT device (a topic which is discussed later in this chapter), it is not possible for an external client to initiate a network connection with a virtual machine running inside a VMware Server NAT based virtual network.
Configuring NAT on Windows VMware Hosts
The VMware Server NAT device may be configured on Windows hosts using the Virtual Network Editor tool, which is accessed by selecting Start -> All Programs -> VMware Server -> Manage Virtual Networks. Once loaded, clicking on the NAT tab displays the NAT configuration screen as illustrated in the following figure:

The NAT page of the VMware Virtual Network Editor tool

The main NAT page is divided into sections. The top section, titled NAT, displays the IP address and netmask of the NAT device. To add NAT to other virtual networks, select the network from the VMnet host menu. If the selected virtual network is currently bridged a warning dialog will appear seeking confirmation of the change. The option of adding a DHCP server to a virtual network is also provided so that virtual machines on the network can obtain dynamic IP addresses and other information such as gateway and DNS details. If NAT is to be disabled entirely, change this menu to the Disabled option.
The NAT service panel displays the current status of the NAT device and provides the ability to stop, start or restart the device. Additional NAT settings are configured on a per virtual network basis, and are accessed by selecting the desired virtual network and clicking the Edit... button:

The VMware Virtual Network Editor NAT settings dialog

The NAT Settings dialog allows a number of options to be configured for the selected virtual network:
  • Gateway IP address - The IP address of the NAT device on the virtual network.
  • UDP Timeout -The amount of time, in seconds, to retain UDP mapping within the NAT device. The UDP timeout is essentially the amount of time for which the NAT device remembers which virtual machine initiated a specific UDP based connection to an external system. If the external system responds after the timeout period has elapsed, the NAT will no longer know to which virtual machine the data should be forwarded, and the UDP packet will be discarded.
  • Config port - The TCP/IP port used for accessing information about the NAT device.
  • Active FTP - Governs whether the NAT device allows Passive or Active FTP sessions.
  • Port Forwarding - The Port Forwarding button allows network traffic arriving on a particular TCP or UDP port on the host system to be forwarded to a specific port on a specific virtual machine within the NAT based virtual network. Since an external client cannot ordinarily initiate a connection with a virtual machine in NAT based virtual network, port forwarding is useful in situations where, for example, a virtual machine is required to act as web or FTP server. As illustrated in the following figure, the Port Forwarding dialog is divided into two sections, one for UDP and the other for TCP. In each case, buttons are provided to Add, Remove and View port forwarding rules:

Configuring VMware Server NAT port forwarding

To configure a port forwarding rule, click on one of the two Add... buttons (depending on whether the forwarding is to apply to UDP or TCP traffic) and enter the Host port on which arriving traffic is to be forwarded, together with the IP address and port of the destination virtual machine. In addition, an optional description of the port forwarding rule may be entered into the Description field. Once configured, any traffic arriving on the specified port of the host system will be forwarded to the specific port of the designated virtual machine.
  • DNS - When clicked, the DNS... button allows DNS servers to be configured for use with the NAT device as illustrated in the following figure:

Configuring DNS settings for the VMware Server NAT device

In addition to specifying the IP address of one or more DNS servers, the Policy for handling multiple DNS servers may also be altered. Options include Burst where a request is sent simultaneously to three servers and the first response is accepted, Order where requests are sent one by one to each server and Rotate where requests are rotated through the available servers. When Autodetect is selected, VMware Server automatically identifies available name servers without the need for the servers to be specifically configured. In addition, the number of retries and length of time the NAT device should attempt to connect to a DNS server may be configured via the Timeout and Retries values.
  • Allow any OUI - The MAC address of a network device is comprised of 6-bytes of information. The first three bytes are referred to as the Organizationally Unique Identifier (OUI) and uniquely identify the issuer of the MAC address of the device. The last three bytes uniquely identify the device within the context of the OUI. Manually changing the OUI portion of a virtual machine's MAC address can prevent connection to the NAT device. In the event of such a problem, ensure that the Allow any OUI option is selected.
  • Netbios - The Netbios section of the NAT Settings dialog allows the timeout and retry values for the NetBIOS Name Service (NBNS) and NetBIOS Datagram Service (NBDS) to be specified if these services are being used on the network. 

Accessing the VMware Infrastructure Web Access Interface

Accessing the VMware Infrastructure Web Access Interface
To access the VMware Infrastructure Web Access interface, either use one of the shortcuts configured during the installation process, or manually launch a browser and enter either http://hostname:8222 or https://hostname:8333 (where hostname is the name of the system running VMware Server). VI Web Access will load into the browser window and prompt for a user name and password. Enter an administrative username and password and click Log In to display a screen similar to the one shown in the following figure:

The VMware Infrastructure Web Access Interface on Windows


Performing a Command Prompt VMware Server Installation

Performing a Command Prompt VMware Server Installation
The preceding section of this chapter described the VMware Server 2.0 installation process using the graphical wizard. As previously mentioned, the wizard installs all networking options by default. For greater control over this aspect of the installation, it is necessary to resort to installing VMware Server from the command prompt. Before proceeding with the steps in this section, however, it is important to note that the installation process will perform an automatic and unprompted restart of the operating system once the installation is complete. For this reason, it is important to save all work and exit any running applications before beginning a command line based VMware Server installation.
The first step of this process is to unpack the installation image to a temporary location (for example C:\tmp\vmware). This is achieved using the following command line:
VMware-server-2.x.x-xxxxxx.exe /a /s /v TARGETDIR="C:\tmp\vmware" /qn
Once the installation files have been extracted the installation can be performed using the Windows msiexec tool. The syntax for this command is as follows:
msiexec /i "TempPath\VMware Server.msi" [INSTALLDIR="InstallPath"] ADDLOCAL=ALL [REMOVE=feature, feature] [property="value"] /qn
In the above syntax outline, the command line arguments in square brackets are optional and TempPath is the temporary location into which the installation files were extracted in the preceding step (C:\tmp\vmware in the case of this example). If VMware Server is to be installed in a location other than the default (\Program Files\VMware\VMware Server), specify the desired alternate location using the INSTALLDIR= directive.
The optional property="value" directives allow options such as the serial number and whether a desktop shortcut should be created to be passed through to the installer. For example, the following command passes through the serial number and requests a desktop shortcut for access to the VI Web Access interface:
Of particular importance is the optional REMOVE= directive which is used to define which networking features are to be omitted during the installation process. Options available include Network, DHCP and NAT. If the virtual machines are to have no network access the REMOVE=Network directive should be specified. Similarly, to install VMware Server without the NAT support, but with host only and bridge support, the following command would need to be executed when installing VMware Server:
msiexec /i "c:\tmp\vmware\VMware Server.msi" ADDLOCAL=ALL REMOVE=NAT /qn
This form of installation is also referred to as silent installation. Do not be alarmed, therefore, if nothing appears to be happening once the command is executed. The installation is performed in the background without any user interaction. Once the installation is complete, the installer will automatically restart the computer, at which point VMware Server will be ready for use.

Installing VMware Server 2.0 on Windows using the Wizard

Installing VMware Server 2.0 on Windows using the Wizard 

The downloaded Windows installation file will have a name similar to VMware-server-2.x.x-xxxxxx.exe where the 'x' characters represent the current VMware Server 2.0 release and build numbers. Installation may be performed either using a graphical wizard or by issuing commands at a command prompt. The disadvantage of the wizard approach is that it does not provide the ability to control which networking features are configured, instead installing them all by default. For more control over the installation of networking options, or to create an automated installation procedure, use the command prompt installation approach covered in the next section of this chapter.
To initiate the wizard based installation process, navigate to the location of the downloaded installer either using Windows Explorer or at the command prompt and execute the file. After a short delay while the installer unpacks the files necessary to proceed, the Installation Wizard for VMware Server welcome screen will appear. On this screen, click Next, read and accept the license agreement and click Next once again. On the Destination Folder screen either accept the default location into which VMware Server is to be installed (typically \Program Files\VMware\VMware Server\) or use the Change button to specify an alternate location. The next screen contains the server configuration settings as illustrated in the following figure:

Configuring VMware Server 2.0 server settings during a Windows installation

As illustrated above, this screen is preconfigured with the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) of the local server and also the default ports for accessing the VMware Infrastructure Web interface using a web browser. Unless there is a need to change these settings (perhaps because the ports are used by another application or firewall settings mandate use of different ports) leave these settings at their default values. Also present on this screen is a setting to enable the option for virtual machines to be started or stopped automatically when the Windows system starts up and shuts down.
Once the server settings are complete, click Next to proceed to the Configure Shortcuts screen. Options are available to place shortcuts to VMware on the desktop, start menu and quick launch bar. On the next screen, click Install to initiate the installation process. This process may take some time depending on the speed and current work load of the server on which the installation is taking place. Once the installation is complete, the Registration Information page will appear. On this page, enter the user name, company information and the serial number provided when the VMware Software was initially downloaded:

Registering VMware Server 2.0 on Windows

If the serial number is not entered at this point it will need to be configured through the VI Web Access interface before any virtual machines can be created. With the installation completed, click Finish to dismiss the installation wizard. Before VMware Server can be used it will likely be necessary to reboot the Windows system. When prompted to do so, exit all currently running applications and click on the Yes button. Alternatively, click No and perform the restart at a more convenient time.




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Installing VMware Server 2.0

Once the VMware Server 2.0 archive has been downloaded in either compressed tar or RPM format the next step is to unpack the software so that the installation process may begin. In the case of the tar archive, this may be unpacked in a terminal window by changing directory to a suitable sub-directory and using the following command (keeping in mind that the file name may differ from that used below):
tar xvfz VMware-server-2.0.0-110949.i386.tar.gz
The above command will unpack the VMware Server 2.0.0 files into a sub-directory named vmware-server-distrib. Change to this directory and run the vmware-install.pl script as follows as super-user:
Prior to performing the installation, the above command will prompt for the locations where the software is to be installed. In each case, a default location will be suggested enclosed in square brackets. The default locations are recommended unless there is a compelling need to install elsewhere. Once the files have been copied, the script will then prompt to start the vmware-config.pl script to configure VMware Server ready for use. At this point proceed to the section below entitled Configuring VMware Server 2.0.
The RPM package may be unpacked using the following command, noting once again that the actual file name may differ from that used below. This task must be performed as super-user by using either the su - or sudo commands:
rpm -Uhv VMware-server-2.0.0-110949.i386.rpm 
This command will install the VMware Server 2.0 files in the appropriate locations on the system (primarily in /etc/vmware, /usr/bin and /usr/lib/vmware).

Configuring VMware Server 2.0

Once the software has been installed from either the tar archive or the RPM package, VMware Server needs to be configured. This is achieved using the vmware-config.pl script. In the case of installation from tar archive, this may have been invoked already by the vmware-install.pl script. In the case of an RPM based installation it will need to be launched manually. By default, vmware-config.pl is installed in /usr/bin so either ensure that this is included in the PATH environment variable, or enter the full path at the command prompt:
When first invoked, vmware-config.pl will attempt to shut down any currently running VMware Server processes. If VMware Server was not previously running, a number of these attempts will be reported as having failed. Such messages may be safely ignored at this point. The configuration script will subsequently display a lengthy end user license agreement (EULA) which must be agreed to before the configuration can proceed. Press the space bar to page through the agreement, or press 'q' to skip the text and enter 'yes' to accept the terms of the agreement.
Once the license agreement has been accepted the configuration script will attempt to load three pre-built VMware Server 2.0 kernel modules (vmmon, vmci and vsock) into the running kernel. If no pre-built modules are available for the current kernel, the script will prompt for the location of the system's kernel sources and C compiler and attempt to build compatible modules. If suitable pre-built modules are available output similar to the following will be displayed:
The bld-2.6.18-8.el5-i686smp-RHEL5 - vmmon module loads perfectly into the 
running kernel.

The bld-2.6.18-8.el5-i686smp-RHEL5 - vmci module loads perfectly into the 
running kernel.

The bld-2.6.18-8.el5-i686smp-RHEL5 - vsock module loads perfectly into the 
running kernel.
Having identified (or compiled) and loaded the appropriate kernel modules the vmware-config.pl script proceeds to the network configuration phase.
If the virtual guest systems running within the VMware Server environment are not required to have any form of network connectivity, enter n when prompted, otherwise enter y to configure networking options. VMware Server 2.0 provides support for three types of virtual networking, so before selecting the network options to be made available to guest systems, it is worth taking a little time to understand each of these options:
  • Bridged networking — Although the guest systems use the physical network connections on the host system, each guest is treated as an independent client on the network. As such it will obtain an IP address from the network's DHCP server, or will require a static IP address to be manually configured if DHCP is not used. Guest systems using bridged networking will be able to communicate directly with both the host and other clients on the network to which the host is connected.
  • Network Address Translation (NAT) — Virtual guests share the IP and MAC address of the host system. Guests will be able to communicate with other clients on the network to which the host is connected, but will appear to those clients as the host system, rather than as individual network clients. This approach allows multiple virtual machines to operating using a single IP address.
  • Host‐only networking - Creates a private sub-net within the host for the guest systems. Guests configured with host-only networking can communicate directly only with the host system and other guests which are also members of the host-only network. The guest systems cannot, however, communicate with the network to which the host is connected.
It is important to note that at this point we are simply deciding what networking options will be available to the guest systems. Just because an option is selected now, it does not mean that any of the virtual guests have to be configured to use it. Similarly, if at a later date a networking option is required which was not selected at this point it may be enabled simply by re-running the vmware-config.pl script and selecting the missing option.
In the case of Bridged network support, the configuration script will prompt for a name for the network and, in the case of hosts with multiple Ethernet adapters, the adapter to be used for the bridge. Note that even though an Ethernet adapter is used for the bridge it will still be available for continued use by the host.
As with Bridged network support, the NAT option requires that a name be assigned. The script will subsequently provide the option to probe the network to locate an unused private subnet address range. Either choose the probe option, or enter a known available subnet for the NAT addressing scheme. Once selected, virtual guests will communicate with each other using these private subnet addresses, but will communicate with the external network using the IP address of the host.
Host-only networking will similarly require a name and an unused private subnet which may be entered manually or automatically identified by the configuration script. Once the network configuration process is complete, vmware-config.pl will load the VMware Server network kernel module (vmnet) into the running kernel of the host operating system.
The next step of the configuration involves defining how the VMware Server management console (also referred to as VMware Infrastructure Web Access) will be accessed, both for local and remote administration purposes. The first option to configure is the port through which the VMware Server environment will be accessed from remote systems using VMware management applications (in other words, non-browser based applications). The default port for this purpose is port 902. The HTTP and secure HTTPS access ports also need to be specified for use when accessing the management console via web browsers. By default these are 8222 and 8333 respectively. Therefore, if the host system has an IP address of, then the management interface would be accessed securely by entering in a browser URL field. Different ports may, of course, be specified if required, although regardless of the ports used, it will be necessary to make sure these ports are open on any firewalls protecting the host if remote administration is to be performed.
Next is the designation of a user to act as the administrator of the VMware Server environment. When prompted, enter 'y' to configure a different administrator and provide the name of the user to be given administrative access to the VMware Server system. This user's name and system password will subsequently be used to gain access to the management console.
Once the administrator has been assigned, specify the location for the virtual machine files and, finally, enter the serial number, of the form XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX recorded at the beginning of this chapter to unlock the VMware Server software.
With VMware Server configured, follow the instructions to install the optional VMware VIX API packages, if required, using the defaults offered.
Finally, vmware-config.pl will start up the VMware Server 2.0 services, presenting output similar to the following (depending on which network options were selected):
Starting VMware services:
   Virtual machine monitor                                 [  OK  ]
   Virtual machine communication interface                 [  OK  ]
   VM communication interface socket family:               [  OK  ]
   Virtual ethernet                                        [  OK  ]
   Bridged networking on /dev/vmnet0                       [  OK  ]
   Host-only networking on /dev/vmnet1 (background)        [  OK  ]
   DHCP server on /dev/vmnet1                              [  OK  ]
   Host-only networking on /dev/vmnet8 (background)        [  OK  ]
   DHCP server on /dev/vmnet8                              [  OK  ]
   NAT service on /dev/vmnet8                              [  OK  ]
   VMware Server Authentication Daemon (background)        [  OK  ]
   Shared Memory Available                                 [  OK  ]
Starting VMware management services:
   VMware Server Host Agent (background)                   [  OK  ]
   VMware Virtual Infrastructure Web Access
Starting VMware autostart virtual machines:
   Virtual machines                                        [  OK  ]

The configuration of VMware Server 2.0.0 build-110949 for Linux for this 
running kernel completed successfully.

windows server 2008 remote desktop

windows server 2008 remote desktop
Windows Server 2008 is, as the name suggests, a server operating system. In the real world this means that systems running Windows Server 2008 will most likely be located in large rack systems in a server room. As such, it is highly unlikely that system administrators are going to want to have to physically visit each of these servers to perform routine administrative tasks such as system configuration and monitoring. A far preferable scenario involves these administrators remotely logging into the servers from their own desktop systems to perform administrative tasks. Fortunately Windows Server 2008 provides precisely this functionality through Remote Desktop and the remote administration features of the Machine Management Console (MMC). In this chapter we will look at the steps necessary to remotely administer Windows Server 2008 systems using Remote Desktop.

What is Remote Desktop?

Remote Desktop allows the graphical interface of a remote Windows system to be displayed over a network onto a local system. In addition, keyboard and mouse events on the local system are transmitted to the remote system enabling the local user to perform tasks on the remote system as if they were physically sitting at the remote system. Conversely, resources (such as printers and disk drives) on the local system can be made available to the remote system for the duration of the connection. This remote control can be established in a number of ways, including over wide area networks (WAN), local area networks (LAN) or over the internet.
In the case of Windows Server 2008, this service is provided by Terminal Services running on the remote systems and the Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) client on the local system.
Terminal Services run in two different modes, Administration and Virtual Session. Remote Desktop for Administration provides full administration functionality to the remote administrator (including access to the console session and visibility of notification messages). Remote Desktop for Administration is the equivalent to working directly at the remote system's console. In virtual session mode the user is subject to some limitations such as the ability to install applications and view console notification messages.
Windows Server 2008 imposes some administrator logon restrictions. Specifically, a maximum of two administrators may be logged on at any one time, either two logged on remotely, or one local and one remote administrator. This assumes, however, that different accounts are being used to log on. In other words, the same user may not log on locally and remotely simultaneously.

Enabling Remote Desktop Administration on the Remote Server

As mentioned previously, remote desktop functionality on the server is provided by Terminal Services. It is important to note, however, that Terminal Services do not have to be explicitly enabled on the server in order to support Remote Desktop Administration. In fact, all that needs to be done is to enable Remote Desktop Administration. This is configured by opening the Control Panel from the Start menu and selecting the System icon (if the Control Panel is in Control Panel Home mode this is located under System and Maintenance). In the Task section in the top left hand corner of the System page select Remote settings to display the following properties window:

The Windows Server 2008 Remote Desktop Properties Dialog

The Remote properties dialog provides a number of options. The default setting is to disallow remote connections to the computer system. The second option allows remote desktop connections from any version of the Remote Desktop client. The third, and most secure option, will only allow connections from Remote Desktop clients with Network Level Authentication support. This typically will only allow access to systems providing secure network authentication such as Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.
If the Windows Firewall is active, the act of enabling Remote Desktop administration also results in the creation of a firewall exception allowing Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) traffic to pass through on TCP port 3389. This default port can be changed by changing this setting in the Registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\TerminalServer\WinStations\RDP-tcp\PortNumber. The easiest way to locate this registry key value is to execute regedit from the Run window or a command prompt, select Edit - > Find and enter RDP-tcp.

Controlling Remote Desktop Access

The default configuration for Remote Desktop is to allow all members of the Administration group to connect remotely. Active Directory also contains a Remote Desktop Users group to which users may be added to provide Remote Desktop access privileges. To provide users with remote desktop access, open the Control Panel -> System and Maintenance -> System -> Remote settings and click on the Select Users button to invoke the Remote Desktop Users dialog illustrated in the following figure:

Selecting Windows Server 2008 Remote Desktop UsersNote that users with administrative privileges do not need to be added to this list; by default they already have Remote Desktop access. To add additional users click on the Add... button to display the Select Users dialog. Enter the name of the user in the text box entitled Enter object names to select and click on Check names to list names that match the name entered. Select the appropriate name from the list. The following example shows user Bill on server winserver-2:

Selecting a user for remote access

Click on OK to apply the change. The new user will now appear in the list of users with Remote Desktop access on the Remote Users screen. Click OK to close this screen and click on Apply in the System Settings screen. The specified user will now have remote desktop access to the system.

Remote Desktop Group Policy

A vast array of configuration options for Terminal Services is available through the Group Policy settings. To access these values start the Group Policy Object Editor (open the Start menu and enter gpedit.msc into the Search box). In the Group Object Policy Editor navigate to Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Terminal Services or User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Terminal Services to access the range of policy settings available.
Policy options include, amongst other options, items such as control over resource redirection (printers, audio etc), setting session time limits and security settings. A complete overview of all the settings is beyond the scope of this book but almost without exception the various settings are largely self-explanatory.

Starting the Remote Desktop Client

With the appropriate configuration tasks completed on the remote system the next step is to launch the Remote Desktop Client on the local system. The client can be run in either administration mode which provides full integration with the console of the remote server, or virtual session mode which provides some administrative privileges but does not provide console access or allow applications to be installed.
To invoke the Remote Desktop Client in virtual session mode either select Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> Remote Desktop Connection or enter the following in the Run dialog or at a command prompt:
To start the Remote Desktop Client in administrator mode run the following command:
mstsc /admin
In either case the following initial screen will appear requesting details of computer to which the client is to connect:

Specifying the Remote Computer

This can either be an IP address or a computer name. If previous connections have been established the User name field will be populated with the user name used in the preceding session. If you need to log in as a different user this option will be provided on the next screen which appears after the Connect button is pressed:

Windows Serevr 2008 Remote Desktop Security Screen

In this screen enter the password for the selected user (note that remote desktop access is only available for user accounts which are password protected). If a user other than the one displayed is required, simply click on the Use another account link and enter the necessary details. Click on OK to establish the connection. After a short delay the remote desktop will appear on the local computer screen.

Remote Desktop Client Configuration Options

The Options>> button displayed on the initial screen of the Remote Desktop Client provides six tabs, each containing a range of configuration options:
  • General - Allows login credentials to be configured and session information to be saved.
  • Display - Configures the resolution and color settings to be used when displaying the remote desktop on the local system.
  • Local Resources - Specifies which local resources (sound, disk drives, printers etc) are to be made accessible to the remote system during the Remote Desktop session. This page also provides options to control the situations under which special key combinations such as Ctrl-Alt-Del are interpreted by the local or remote systems.
  • Programs - Allows specified programs to be automatically invoked each time a remote sessions is established.
  • Experience - Controls which desktop features are enabled or disabled for the Remote Desktop session. For example, over a slow dial-up connection it is unwise to have the desktop background displayed and font smoothing enabled. Either select the connection type and speed to see recommended settings, or use Custom to configure your own settings. This particular screen also provides the option to have the connection automatically re-established in the event that a session is dropped.
  • Advanced - Enables and disables remote server verification. This ensures that the remote server to which you are connected is indeed the server you wanted. Also available are TS Gateway settings. By default the Remote Desktop Client is configured to automatically detect TS Gateway settings.

Remote Session Tracking

With Remote Desktop access implemented it is often useful to find out at times who is logged into a system. This can be achieved using the quser command-line tool. To obtain details of logged in users on a local system simply run quser at a command prompt or in a Run dialog:
C:Users\Administrator> quser
 administrator                             1  Disc         3:18  7/11/2008 12:36 PM
 bill                  rdp-tcp#0           2  Active          .  7/14/2008 9:11 AM
 nas                   console             3  Active      none   7/11/2008 12:58 PM

To obtain information for a remote system simply run quser with the /server: command-line option. For example:
C:\Users\Administrator> quser /server:winserver-2
 administrator                             1  Disc         3:22  7/11/2008 12:36 PM
 bill                  rdp-tcp#0           2  Active          .  7/14/2008 9:11 AM
 nas                   console             3  Active      none   7/11/2008 12:58 PM

Logging out from a Remote Desktop Session

When the Remote Desktop Client is exited by pressing the 'X' on the control panel the remote session continues to run on the server even though no client is connected. Next time the user connects the desktop session will appear exactly as it was left before.
To end the session select Start in the remote desktop session, click on the right arrow button in the bottom right hand corner of the menu and select Log Off. This will close down the remote desktop session and close the remote desktop client.

Running Multiple Remote Desktops

Multiple concurrent remote desktops can be run and managed within a single window using the MMC Remote Desktops snap-in. This may either be snapped into the MMC or launched from the command-line or a Run dialog by typing:
Once launched, right click on the Remote desktops item in the tree in the left hand panel and select Add a new connection from the menu. Once selected the Add New Connection dialog will appear as follows:

Adding a new connection to the Remote Desktops snap-in

In this dialog enter the IP address or computer name of the remote system together with the User name and the name to be assigned to this connection (this is essentially the name by which this connection will be listed and administered inside the Remote Desktops snap-in). For an administrative session (as opposed to a virtual session) set the Connect with /admin box. Click OK to add the session to the snap-in. Once added, the session will appear in the left hand panel under Remote Desktops. Repeat these steps to add connections to any additional remote systems required.
To establish a remote desktop connection, right click on the name of the session from the left hand panel and select Connect from the menu. The remote session will appear in the window. To start another session simply right click on the session name and once again select Connect. To switch between sessions simply click on the name of the session in the left hand panel and the corresponding desktop will be displayed. The following figure illustrates two sessions running in Remote Desktops:

Multiple remote desktops running in the Windows Server 2008 Remote Desktops Snap-in

To change configuration options for each session right click on the desired session in the left hand panel and select Properties. This panel has a number of tabs which enable credentials, screen size and program start properties to be defined.

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