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Tools: RDCMan advanced configuration

In the previous article we have seen the basic RDCMan configuration, and why/how to use it in a basic configuration.

As you surely have noticed, when you create a group or a server, there are different tabs with different settings. We will see how to configure these in order to make you management easier.

Summary:

I – Default Settings group properties

II – Rdg file properties

III – Group properties

IV – Server properties

 

I – Default settings group properties

The Default settings group is the parent group for every settings you can configure in your rdg file/group/servers.
To access it, click on Tools > Options. On the General tab, click on Default group settings…

tools option

Logon Credentials

In this tab we can configure the credentials that you are going to use to login in your servers. By default, it is configured by your local account name and domain/workgroup.

default setting groups logon credential
You can see the Custom profile is used, if you change this parameters and click on Save it will open a new window, save your parameters in a new profile. We will see later where to modify these profiles.

new profile

Gateway Settings

The Gateway Settings tab is used to configure the TS (Terminal Server) gateway through which you will access the servers.

TS Gateway: computer that connects two networks that use different network protocols. A gateway reformats information from one network so that it is compatible with the other network. It is a type of gateway that enables authorized users to connect to remote computers on a corporate network from any computer with an Internet connection.

By default this setting isn’t activated, if your configuration require one, you can activate it by checking the box Use a TS Gateway server, once done, you will gain access to more configurations.

default setting ts gateway fill

Server name: simply the name/IP of the server used as a TS Gateway.

Bypass for local address: by checking this box, RDP connection will only go through the TS Gateway when you are trying to access servers which are not located in your local network.

Logon method: this is where you configure the way you will be authenticated each time you are connecting to a server. You have three choices:

Ask for password (NTLM): this option will prompt you to enter your password when you try to connect to a server.

Smart Card: this option will ask you to insert your smart card when you try to connect and to enter the credential of this smart card as well.

A Smart Card is a small USB key, credit card sized which allow to provide authorization and authentication in order to have a more secure environment.

Ask me later: this option will prompt you to choose how you want to be authenticated each time you try to connect to a server.

Share Gateway credentials with the remote computer: you may check this box if you are using the same credentials to authenticate to the TS Gateway and to login to the servers, that will avoid you to enter twice the same credentials.

Profile: this is to configure which profile will be used by default. If you want to choose a profile, you need to select the Ask for password (NTLM) logon method.

Connection Settings

default setting group connection setting

Connect to console: by using this option you will automatically be connected to the console session of your servers.

The Console session is the session with the ID=0, which correspond to the session you will see if you are looking at the screen directly plugged to the server.

Start program: this option allow you to configure the path of a program to start when you are connecting to a server through RDP.

Working dir: this option configure the working directory of the program specified above.

Port: here you configure the port used by the RDP connection (3389 by default).

Load balance config: in this option you configure the load balancer used, if there is.

 

Remote Desktop Settings

The Remote Desktop settings tab is the place where you will configure the screen resolution and color definition for your RDP connection.

You may adapt the resolution regarding to the resolution of your own screen.

remote desktop settings

Same as client area: by selection this option you will use the resolution used by the RDCMan window client area after excluding the servers/groups tree.

This option can be very interesting if you often need to switch from different servers and do not require to have a full screen view.

Local Resources

The Local Resources tab configure how the different resources like sound, devices, keyboard will interact between the remote and local computer.

default setting group local resources

Remote sound: this option define what to do when a sound is played on the remote computer:

Bring to this computer: the sound will be played on your computer.

Leave at remote computer: the sound will only be played on the remote computer, so you will not hear it.

Do not play: no sound will be played, either on the local or remote computer.

Sound quality: if you configure your RDP to play sound, you can define the quality of the sound.

Dynamically adjusted: the quality of the sound will be adjusted automatically regarding to your bandwidth or connection speed.

High/Medium quality: it define if you want to have a high or medium quality audio experience through RDP. Keep in mind that the highest the quality is, the more it will use your bandwidth.

Remote recording: to be able to record what is displayed on the screen.

Do not record: no record option is available.

Record from this computer: you will record what is displayed on the screen from your local computer.

Windows key combo: this option define how you want to configure the uses of the key combo (like CTRL + ALT + DEL, or Windows + E) when you are using RDP connection.

On the local computer: the key combo will be executed on the local computer only, not on the remote computer.

On the remote computer: the key combo will be executed on the remote computer only, not the local one.

In full screen mode only: with this option, the key combo will be executed on the remote computer only when you are in full screen configuration, otherwise it will execute them in the local computer.

Redirect options: this option is useful to define which local devices can be used in the remote computer, like printers, local drives, smart cards, etc.

 

Security Settings

This tab concerns the behavior for the remote desktop authentication.

default setting group security setting

Connect and don’t warn if authentication fails: if the remote computer authentication fails you will keep connecting to it, without any warning. This is the least secure setting.

Do not connect if authentication fails: if authentication fails, you will not be able to connect to the remote computer. This one is the more secure setting.

Warn if authentication fails: by using this setting, you will get a warning message before being able to connect to the remote computer. This is the default setting.

 

Display Settings

This tab allow you to configure the display configuration for the thumbnails (the miniature which display every servers in your rdg file).

default setting group display settings

These are the thumbnails

rdcman thumbsnail

Scale docked/undocked remote desktop to fit window: you can check these boxes if you want the remote desktop to fit the rdcman window whenever they are docked or undocked.

Preview session in thumbnail: this option will display the session on the thumbnail for every servers you are connected to.

Interactive Session: you can interact in the session by using the thumbnails. Not very convenient if the thumbnails are too small.

Show disconnected thumbnails: check or uncheck this option if you want to show or not the thumbnails for disconnected servers. If you are managing a lot of servers, disabling this option can be a good idea in order to make your rdcman window clearer.

Encryption Settings

This tab is used to configure how you will encrypt your password.

default setting group encryption setting

Password encryption: choose how to encrypt your password.

Logged on user’s credentials: it will use the users credentials.

Certificate: it will use a certificate or a smart card.

certificate

 

Profile Management

It is in this tab that we will configure the different profile used in our rdg file. This can be useful if you have more than one person using the same rdg or if you need to configure specific profile for different groups/servers.

From here you can see the existing profiles.

Edit an existing profile

edit profile

Add a new one

add profile

Or delete a profile.

 

II – RDG file properties

If you right click on your rdg file and go in Properties you will see the same tabs as seen previously, except that here there is a box Inherit from parent. If you check this box in those tabs, their setting will be the same as the Default group settings we have seen before.

rdg file logon credential

If you uncheck it, then you can modify the settings at your will.

rdg file inherit uncheck

III – Group properties

When you right click on a group and go to Properties, you will see some tabs which are still the same as the previous ones.

There is a slight difference here: you can choose from which parent you want a group to inherit configuration.

For example, I have my group China which will inherit from my rdg file configuration:

rdg file logon credential same china

So we can see the setting will be the same:

china group logon inherit

But, if for any reasons I want my group Tianjin to not inherit from the China group but the France group, I will modify its parent in the setting:

tianjin group same logon france

And I will disable the inheritance and change a setting in my France group, like the logon credential:

france group change logon

And then, we can see my Tianjin group automatically inheriting the same setting:

tianjin group same logon france

By disabling inheritance, you can configure independently groups which require different settings.

When you change the parent for a group or a server you will it moved under the new parent in the rdcman tree.

IV – Servers properties

For the servers properties, it works exactly the same way. The only difference it will be the option VM console connect that you can configure independently for each servers if you want to use the console session.

 

Here we are, we have done an overview of RDCMan configuration, how it works. I hope it has been useful for you 🙂

Don’t hesitate to post comments if you have questions or anything else !