Redirect sound audio from remote desktop server to local machine

Follow the steps below to allow redirection of sound from a remote desktop server (terminal server) to local/client machine. This applies in Windows Server 2008R2. – see notes further below if you are using Windows Server 2012R2.

1) Install the “desktop experience” feature in server manager and then start the windows audio service. We have noticed that the server should be rebooted twice after installation of the desktop experience role. We do not install this feature by default as it consumes additional resources. After the reboots, make sure the windows audio service has started – if needed, click on the sound icon in the lower right corner, right click to sounds, follow prompts.

2) Confirm that sound redirection isn’t restricted on the server. Go to RD Session Host Configuration, right click on RDP-tcp and go to properties, go to client settings tab and verify that audio playback is not disabled. – UNCHECK THE BOXES TO ENABLE


3) On the Remote Desktop Connection client on your local machine, under local resources, verify that it says “play on this computer” for remote audio playback.   Check these settings on your client prior to logging into the server.


To price hosted remote desktop servers click the ‘remote desktop link’ above for pricing.



Easier than in 2008R2 as you don’t need to install the Desktop Experience role.

  • Enable the windows audio service by right clicking audio service sound icon in lower right corner of taskbar and go to sounds.  You should see a message that audio service is not running and asking if you wish to enable it – select YES.



  • Close the Sounds windows and log off the server.  During our testing we didn’t have to reboot the server but if it doesn’t work below, try rebooting. 
  • When you login, you have to allow audio redirection in the remote desktop connection client on your local PC before connecting.
  • audio_redirection
  • You can test if this worked by watching the video on our home page and can hear the sound!




Remote Desktop sessions varying speed opening database reports

Windows Server 2008R2 with remote desktop services role (terminal services) and Access database

We recently had a user notice that database reports would open up at different speeds in different remote desktop sessions. After trying many different things, it was determined that printer redirection was causing some sessions to open database reports more slowly than others and the reports would open much faster if printer redirection was unchecked under local resources when making the remote desktop connection.

Printing issues on Terminal Server with Domain Controller role

Applies to Windows Server 2008R2
Microsoft does not recommend installing the Remote Desktop Services role (Terminal Services role) on a domain controller in Windows Server 2008R2. If you have installed both roles, you may notice printing issues whereby documents won’t print to your redirected printer even thought it shows as available. First review the event viewer and look for entries regarding printing and Access is Denied. You may need to change permissions/security on the windowssystem32spoolprinters folder to full access for printing to occur.

See link from for additional information:

How to set up RemoteApp on Server 2012 R2

RemoteApp in Windows Server 2012R2

To use Remote App on Windows Server 2012 R2, the server must be connected to a domain for RemoteApp to work (this was not a requirement in 2008 R2).  See link below, in 2012 R2 (but not 2012), Active Directory can be on the same server as RD Connection Broker. — See this section:  “Single server RDS deployment including Active Directory. We now support running our RD Connection Broker role service on the same physical instance as an Active Directory Domain Controller. In addition, we published guidelines for how RD Session Host could be used without the RD Connection Broker.”

Ways to Distribute RemoteApps in Windows Server 2012 R2: — “Distribution of Remote Apps and Desktops in Windows Server 2012”

1) Distribute using RD Web Access – similar to how it was done in 2008 R2 by going to your site: http://IPofSERVER/rdweb 2008R2Access RemoteApp and Desktop Connection by Using the RD Web Access Web Site 2008R2 Connect to Remote Desktop Web Access

2) Distribute using Web Feed URL in the control panel – In 2008R2, you could create .rdp files using RemoteApp Wizard but that has been replaced in 2012 and the Web Feed method is recommended. — Distribution of Remote Apps and Desktops in Windows Server 2012

Another approach (which isn’t specific to RemoteApp) is to create remote desktop shortcuts – see video on our website – These shortcuts can be made regardless of remote app but users have the ability to edit them.

Additional Links relating to 2012 RDS: – remote desktop services overview for 2012 – Publishing RemoteApps in 2012 – Windows Server 2012 Remote Desktop Services (RDS) on windows server blog

vmware vcenter upgrade with cisco 1000v host disappears

Hopefully this helps people save a lot of time.

If you no longer see your VMware host in vCenter after you upgrade the host and you are using the cisco 1000v make sure your vCenter database has rows for that allow the version of your Host server.  We found that the only hosts that were allowed via the database were the original host version 4.1 thus we could not see the hosts under the 1000v distributed switch screen in vCenter until we added the rows and rebooted vCenter.

You need to add rows to this vCenter database table: VPX_DVS_COMPATIBLE

And you will need to look up the ID to enter in the first column of the above table in this table for the cisco 1000v switch: VPX_DVS

When you first open the VPX_DVS_COMPATIBLE table you will probably only see rows for the old versions of you host like this

ID of distributed switch             Description          Version
######                                             embeddedEsx         4.1+
######                                             esx                                  4.1+

You will need to add rows for the versions you want to be able to connect to your cisco 1000v distributed switch, so copy add the new rows with the versions you need.  The lines will  have the same data as above but with version different versions:5.0+, 5.1+, 5.5+

Example for version esxi 5.1
######                                             embeddedEsx         5.1+
######                                             esx                                  5.1+

We saw a message about a metadata error a few times while trying to upgrade as well as reload hosts.  We upgraded VIBs and VEMs on the host and verified many setting for to many hours before finding a reference to

We thought we did not have the correct licensing for the cisco 1000v, so we thought about changing to the free version of the cisco 1000v.    We upgraded from vCenter 4.1 to vCenter 5.5 which is not recommended when you have the cisco 1000v in the environment.  And the VMware updgrade simply does not update their database to support the newer esxi version thus the hosts do not show up under the distributed switch for the cisco 1000v until you add the rows above to the vCenter database.


Here are some of the steps we take to upgrade hosts:

Disconnected host from vDS in networking tab in vCenter

Go to host view in vcenter, configuration, security settings, enable SSH manually start

Then you can putty into the host

Deleted VEM/VIB from host  (vem-remove –d); then exit; stop SSH service in vcenter   (need to do this because when tried to upgrade without deleting VIB it gave error that VIB was conflicting and installer would not continue – no force migrate option like when went from 4.1 to 5.0)

Shut down host and use DVD to upgrade it to 5.5  (use upgrade, preserve datastore option)

Reconnect host in vcenter

Add Host to vDS in networking — This process automatically scanned host and invoked VUM to install VDS module on host, installed & remediated – all automatically!

Then went back to Host and VUM, scanned again, and installed 18 patches, which required a reboot

Exit Maintenance mode

Windows server how to change Public network to Private network

If you are cross connecting two servers or using a private internal network to connect your servers you will want to have the network identified as private.

Making network connection for backend connection / private IPs show as private instead of public.  Then you can change the firewall permissions on the private networks to allow access for applications like SQL server.

If you are using a backend connection to cross-connect two servers, you may want the network connection to show as a private connection and have different firewall rules than with your public connection. We have found that in Windows Server, when a default gateway isn’t entered for a backend connection, the network will display as “unidentified network” and windows will automatically define it as a public network for firewall profile purposes.


Windows Server 2008 R2 – One workaround is to change the default in Windows so that unidentified networks default to the private profile. Under Administrative Tools, Local Security, Policy, Security Settings, Network List Manager Policies, then on the right hand side you can change Unidentified Networks to Private.


Windows Server 2012 R2
Administrative Tools –> Local Security Policy –> Network List Manager Policies –> (in right window)  Unidentified Networks (double click).   Here you can change the location type to “Public” or “Private” and you can change the user permissions to allow them to change the type.

You should update your web.config now WordPress Permalinks

Are you trying to use Permalinks with WordPress to have a nice page name rather than www.domain…com/?p=3 and you see the message toward the top of your page that says “You should update your web.config now”?

You might be thinking what is a web.config. This means that you are running your WordPress site on a windows server like Windows 2012R2 server and the WordPress Admin can not add the code to the web.config file which is on your server under the default install folder for WordPress.

First you need to locate your web.config file.

  • You should find it in the default root where you installed WordPress. This folder will also have the folders “wp-admin”, “wp-content” and “wp-includes”
  • You can search your server for the web.config file. Note you may have more than one. So make sure this folder has these folders “wp-admin”, “wp-content” and “wp-includes”.

If you can’t access your file system to locate this file then you can’t user permalinks. If you are hosting with godaddy you want to use a Linux server. If you are using a dedicated server you should be fine running WordPress on a Windows Server. I know of several successful sites.

Once you find your web.config file you want to open it. You can open it in WordPad or Visual Studio if you have it loaded.

You need to add the code shown below and you can add it just below the line.

				<rule name="Main Rule" stopProcessing="true">
					<match url=".*" />
					<conditions logicalGrouping="MatchAll">
						<add input="{REQUEST_FILENAME}" matchType="IsFile" negate="true" />
						<add input="{REQUEST_FILENAME}" matchType="IsDirectory" negate="true" />
					<action type="Rewrite" url="index.php" />

Now Save your changes to the web.config file.

And now your web.config probably looks very much like the following.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
				<rule name="Main Rule" stopProcessing="true">
					<match url=".*" />
					<conditions logicalGrouping="MatchAll">
						<add input="{REQUEST_FILENAME}" matchType="IsFile" negate="true" />
						<add input="{REQUEST_FILENAME}" matchType="IsDirectory" negate="true" />
					<action type="Rewrite" url="index.php" />
			<remove fileExtension=".svg" />
			<mimeMap fileExtension=".svg" mimeType="image/svg+xml" />
                <remove value="index.aspx" />
                <add value="index.php" />

Credit for the code goes to Jeff Clark NOTE his code does not have the correct double quotes for the web.config file found

iDRAC error Secure Connection Failed

iDRAC6 error “Secure Connection Failed” when trying to access several iDRAC cards.

If you access several iDRAC cards for remote administration of your Dell servers you may have seen the dreaded “Secure Connection Failed” message.

If you are using Firefox and have been clicking the “Add Exception” when accessing an iDRAC card over a https:// which doesn’t have a SSL cert loaded you can do the following to fix the issue.


…. Go to the IP or domain of the iDRAC card.
When you see the page saying “This Connection is Untrusted”
Click the “Add Exception” button at the bottom. This opens a window. If you uncheck the box at the bottom of the add security exceptions screen that says “permanently store this exception” so that it isn’t permanently stored.

Then you can go to both drac IPs using firefox without issue as long as you close & restart the browser between using each drac IP (but you can’t have both drac IPs open at one time in firefox).

Don’t permanently save iDRAC IP exceptions anymore. (note: I did clear out the exceptions and Dell idrac certificate from the past at à Firefox, options, options, advanced tab, certificates, view certificates, server tab (deleted IP address) and authorities tab (deleted Dell idrac default certification).


Can I delete files in the WERReportQueue folder on Windows Server 2008R2

If you have noticed that your windows server has a lot of files in the folder ProgramDataMicrosoftWindowsWERReportQueue you can delete them to free up space on your drive.

It is recommended using “Disk Cleanup” to free up the space.

To disable the files from accumulating you can turn Windows Error Reporting off.

On a Windows 2008R2 server open “Server Manager”
Open “Resources and Support”
Click “Configure Windows Error Reporting”
In the “Windows Error Reporting Configuration” box
Select “I don’t want to participate, and don’t ask me again”


See the steps from Microsoft below