Adding RDP to the SBS Mgmt Console

This comes from the ‘You can still teach me something new’ department …

First, some background info … On my workstation, I have several shortcut icons to initiate RDP connections to various workstations and servers (via mstsc.exe). When connecting to servers, I often create these shortcut links using the /v option to specificy the server name, and the /console option in order to connect to the actual console session of the server, rather than opening a second session. Something like this:

mstsc.exe /v:sbsserver /console

Recently a post from a fellow MVP suggested that I’m not the only one who may have forgotten that the Windows 2003 Admin Toolkit contains a Remote Desktop MMC addin.

You can download the latest version of the W2003 Admin Tools -SP1 from here: W2003 Admin Tools 

N.B.: if you have the original version of the tool kit installed, you will need to uninstall it first, before installing the SP1 version. Don’t forget that you can also install the W2003 toolkit on your XP workstation, as well as onto your SBS server.

After installing it, go to Start > Programs > Administrative Tools, and look for Remote Desktop MMC link. I think it’s pretty self explanatory from there. What’s really great is that you can instantaneously move from one remote session to the next.

Now … for the really good news.

If you install this on your SBS server, with just a few more clicks, you can add this RDP mmc to your SBS Server Mgmt console. Here’s how to do it (with a tip of the hat to Steven Teiger) for his help):

1. From your SBS server, drill down C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\SmallBusinessServer\Administration, locate the file ‘itprosbsconsole.msc’, go to the properties for this file, and clear (uncheck) the read-only box.

2. Next, click Start > Run, and type ‘mmc’.  From the MMC window, click on File > Open, and drill down and open up the same ‘itprosbsconsole.msc’ file.

3. The Server Mgmt console will open up. When it does, click on File > Add/Remove Snap-in

4. Double click on ‘Home Page’, then click ‘Add…’, then scroll down and add the ‘Remote Desktops’ MMC.

P.S. If you are running ISA 2004, you can go ahead at this time and also add the ISA 2004 Server Mgmt MMC as well.


3 thoughts on “Adding RDP to the SBS Mgmt Console

  1. Something weird. I followed these instructions to add a couple of snap-ins to the Server Management console, like Update Services 3.0 and Terminal Server Management, but when I launch the console using the SBS-supplied shortcut, “C:\Program Files\Microsoft Windows Small Business Server\Administration\LaunchConsole.exe”, it still pulls up the console in its old configuration.

    If I rename itprosbsconsole.msc, the LaunchConsole.exe app still somehow pulls up the old console… ?!

  2. Darnit, nevermind, I found it. If I had inspected your article more closely, I would have realized that the itprosbsconsole.msc in the Program Files tree is the main copy. You clearly say in the article to look in the All Users profile. DUH!

    Thanks for a good tip. I’ve been wanting to add other snap-ins to this console for a long time.

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