Track User and Computer Sessions on Windows Server.

You can use Computer Management to track all connections to shared resources on a Windows Server 2008 R2 system. Whenever a user or computer connects to a shared resource, Windows Server 2008 R2 lists a connection in the Sessions node.

To view connections to shared resources, type net session at a command prompt or follow these steps:
1. In Computer Management, connect to the computer on which you created the shared resource.
2. In the console tree, expand System Tools, expand Shared Folders, and then select Sessions. You can now view connections to shares for users and computers.

The columns for the Sessions node provide the following important information about user and computer connections:
User The names of users or computers connected to shared resources. Computer names are shown with a $ suffix to differentiate them from users.
Computer The name of the computer being used.
Type The type of network connection being used.
# Open Files The number of files the user is actively working with. For more detailed information, access the Open Files node.
Connected Time The time that has elapsed since the connection was established.
Idle Time The time that has elapsed since the connection was last used.
Guest Whether the user is logged on as a guest.

Black screen when I connect to my Windows server via RDP

Why do I get a black screen when I connect to my Windows server via RDP (Remote Desktop)?

This issue is a known Windows bug that occurs when the primary drive ( C: ) runs out of available free space. When this happens, Windows often overwrites control panel color settings for the desktop and login screen, resulting in the “blacked out” login screen and/or desktop.

When the login screen is black, you can often still access the normal Windows desktop, you just have to alt/tab through the various login screens:

When you first connect via RDP, there are two blanks you can tab through, the top one being the username (which should be Administrator,or, whatever you have set as your admin name), then, when you tab again, you will be in the password field. After entering the username and password, you should be able to Tab/Enter, and gain access to the system. If the system was just recently rebooted without warning, another screen (black) will pop up, asking why the server was rebooted. You can type anything here, and tab/enter again.

Troubleshoot startup problems in Windows Server 2003.

A successful Windows startup includes of the following four phases:

1. Initial phase
2. Boot loader phase
3. Kernel phase
4. Logon phase

If a problem occurs during one of these phases, Windows may not start correctly and you may experience one of the following problems:

The computer stops responding (hangs).
You receive an error message.

If a startup problem occurs after you click Microsoft Windows Server 2003 from boot loader menu, files that the operating system needs may be missing or damaged.

Windows provides a variety of options that you can use to troubleshoot this issue, including Safe mode, the Recovery Console, and an Automated System Recovery. You may opt for the below listed options to recover your windows:

• The Last Known Good Configuration.

• Start the Computer in Safe Mode.

• Use Event Viewer to Identify the Cause of the Startup Problem.

• Use System Information to Identify the Cause of the Startup Problem.

• View the Safe Mode Boot Log File.

• Use Device Manager to Identify the Cause of the Startup Problem.

• Use System Configuration Utility (msconfig.exe).

• Isolate Problems by Using System Startup Options.

• Troubleshoot the System.ini File.

• Use the Microsoft Windows Recovery Console.

• Confirm That Your Hard Disk or File System Is Not Damaged.

• Use Automated System Recovery.

• Create an ASR Disk Set by Using Backup.

• Repair Your Installation of Windows.

• Use the Microsoft Product Support Services Web Site to Find a Solution.

Windows Password Reset

Instructions:

• 1 Insert the BartPE disk.

•2 Restart your PC. Immediately start tapping “F8” or “Delete” until you get the BIOS screen. It will have a black background with white text.

•3 Highlight the “Boot” option with your arrow keys and press “Enter.” Select “Disc Drive” as the boot option and then press “F10.”

•4 Press “Yes” if it asks you to confirm the selection and then press “Enter” to reboot the PC.

•5 Click on the “Go” button when BartPE appears on the screen.

•6 Click on “Programs” > “Password Renew” > “Select Target Windows.”

•7 Select “My Computer” > “C” > “Windows” > “Renew Existing User Password” > “Administrator.” This instructs the program to reset the Admin password.

•8 Enter in a new Administrator password. Click on “Install” to set it. Remember this password and store it in a safe location.

•9 Press the “Eject” button on your disc drive and take out the disc.

•10 Restart your Windows Operating System computer. Your password is now reset.

Troubleshoot DNS

1. Check for network connectivity.

2. Verify your DNS server IP addresses are correct and in order.

3. Ping the IP address of the host you are trying to get to (if it is known).

4. Find out what DNS server is being used with nslookup.

5. Check your DNS suffix.

6. Make sure that your DNS settings are configured to pull the DNS IP from the DHCP server.

7. Release and renew your DHCP Server IP address (and DNS information).

8. Check the DNS Server and restart services or reboot if necessary.

9. Reboot your small office / home DNS router.

10. Contact your ISP.

Summary:

DNS resolution is a critical piece of our network infrastructure and it must work properly for our network applications to function.