Remote Desktop is a cool feature in Windows Server 2003 that allows you to log on to a machine and work on it as if you were sitting on the front of that machine (in the Windows 2000 Advanced Server Edition, this feature is called Terminal Services in Remote Administration mode). Remote Desktop is a lifeguard-like role for repairing server failures remotely. But what if you forgot to enable this feature before you shipped the server to the field? If the server is in front of you, it is easy to enable Remote Desktop: Just log on as an administrator, open System in Control Panel, select the Remote tab, and then select the checkbox in Remote Desktop to allow users to connect to this computer remotely.
Unfortunately, you can't use the system utility on a remote machine to enable Remote Desktop (although you use Computer Management to connect the console to a remote computer, right-click the root node and select properties to access some of the Properties tab pages of the system on the remote computer, but the Remote tab page is inaccessible. As shown in Figure 1. Here the remote computer is named SRV220).
The workaround is as follows:
Sit down and log on to your Windows XP workstation as an administrator and start Registry Editor (Start-> Run->regedit-> OK). Then select the Connect Network registry entry in the File menu (Figure 2).
The Select Computer dialog box opens, either by browsing the Active Directory to locate the remote server or by typing its name in the text box (Figure 3).
Click OK, and a node representing the remote machine appears in Registry Editor (Figure 4).
Now browse HKLM on the server and find the following registry key (Figure 5):
Under the Terminal Server key, you will find a REG_DWORD-type key value called Fdenytsconnection. Double-click the key value to open the Edit DWORD Value dialog box and change 1 (disable Remote Desktop) to 0 (Enable Remote Desktop) (see Figure 6).
The remote machine needs to be rebooted for the change to take effect. So open a command prompt window and type the following command: Shutdown-m \srv220-r
The Remote Desktop should be enabled after the remote machine reboots. To verify from your workstation, open the start-> "All Programs"-> "attachment"-> "communications"-> "Remote Desktop Connection", in the Remote Desktop Connection login box, enter the remote server name, and so on when prompted to enter your administrator password, you can log into the remote server.