How To HTPC

Enabling Concurrent RDP sessions in Windows 7

RDPscreen Having recently started using my HTPC directly on the main television in our home has been a good experience.  It’s given me access to more content than is available on extender and overall a lot more control of my experience in my main viewing area.

One of the issues you come across with this method however is access to non-Media Center functions.  We all know that you can use RDP or Microsoft Live Mesh to remote into your HTPC to perform these tasks but the problem we run into is that it kicks the Media Center session that someone may be running at the time.

Missing Remote, with help from a larger community, has come up with a solution to the issue.  Just like in Windows Vista, it’s possible to enable concurrent Remote Desktop sessions in Windows 7.  This allows you to RDP into your HTPC as one user, while the main user is able to continue using Media Center or any other application they may be running.

While it’s probably a complicated process to do yourself, fellow Media Center MVP, Mike Garcen, has been able to work with the Media Center community to put together a batch file that when run will automatically turn on concurrent sessions.

When I ran the script earlier this morning, everything went off without a hitch.  I ran it through an RDP session and while it of course kicked me due to having to shut down the RDP service, the script continued to run on it’s own and after about 30 seconds I logged back in and had no troubles.  Once everything was done, I turned on my home theater, brought up Media Center on the HTPC then went back to my laptop.  I logged into the RDP session using a different user account and that was it.  I was using the remote desktop on my laptop all while Media Center continued to chug along on the TV.  Perfection.  Now I can go in and edit metadata, move files if needed, basically anything I need.

Head over to the post at Missing Remote to grab the batch file and get started!

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About the author

Adam Thursby

Adam Thursby is the founder and creator of The Digital Media Zone.