Hacking Windows 7 Media Center

Enable Concurrent User Sessions in Windows 7

by @ 8:30 am on February 1st, 2009 in programs, windows 7 with 27 Comments

Nothing kills a Media Center user like having to pull out the old keyboard and mouse just to sit in front of the TV and run some updates or install new software.  Many have turned to a feature in Windows known as Remote Desktop Connection. This feature, though only included in some versions of Windows, provides an easy way to connect to your Media Center form your everyday desktop PC.

Windows7 Remote Desktop Connection

Unfortunately, as long as you are logged into the Media Center no one else can use it.  This means that even though you may feel a little more comfortable the family still loses out on movie time. The solution is Concurrent User Sessions, allowing the Media Center to remain on the TV while letting another user in behind the scenes.

Thanks to the fine folks at Missing Remote  and friends, getting your Windows 7 machine to allow concurrent user sessions is as easy a running a simple command line program.  Just download the program here then right-click install.cmd to “Run as Administrator.” That should be all there is too it.

There are also a few command line options which can be run from either an elevated command prompt (type cmd into the start box and press ctrl-shift-enter) or a shortcut run as administrator. To enable blank passwords use “–blank”, “-multi” to enable multiple sessions per user.

Thanks to Missing Remote, Pinobigbird, untermensch and cocoa, we can now sit in the comfort of our well worn desk chairs to work on Media Center without disturbing the family (and incurring the wrath of significant others). Find the original article from Missing Remote right here.

27 Comments


pieter
Comment #411 from pieter [Reply]

thank god, this is a lifesaver. thanks

Comment left April 22, 2009 at 3:20 pm Permanent Link

Neil
Comment #491 from Neil [Reply]

Not working on the rc (build 7100) for me.

The install.cmd file from the above download won’t run on any build higher than 7000.

I tried it manualy and the termsrv.dll is not working…

Anyone found a version for the release candidate?

Comment left April 30, 2009 at 1:31 pm Permanent Link

andyd75
Comment #1576 from andyd75 [Reply]

can’t get it to work with build 7137 – even after editing the batch file

Comment left June 11, 2009 at 5:11 am Permanent Link

andyd75
Comment #1651 from andyd75 [Reply]

I seem to have it working with build 7127 now by changing 2 lines in the .cmd file. i assume this will work with further builds.

Comment left June 16, 2009 at 4:38 am Permanent Link
@Reply #1655 from Michael Healy [Reply]

Which lines needed to be changed? In case others are having the same trouble.

Comment left June 16, 2009 at 7:59 am Permanent Link

andyd75
Comment #1680 from andyd75 [Reply]

the lines which refer to the version number. but while it appeared to update correctly it still asks me to kill the current user off.

Comment left June 17, 2009 at 8:11 am Permanent Link

riqjuan
Comment #2255 from riqjuan [Reply]

Michael, Missing Remote have updated the steps for this tweak yet again in light of RTM release yesterday.

Just an FYI :D

Comment left July 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm Permanent Link

Carlos
Comment #2719 from Carlos [Reply]

Hey Guys,

Has anyone tested this when also Media Center Extenders are part of the setup? I remember when I tried something like this on Vista (a few months ago), none of my extenders couldn’t connect to MC, so I had to revert it back…

Comment left August 16, 2009 at 9:24 am Permanent Link

tim
Comment #4029 from tim [Reply]

i’ve ran this on w7 x64 RTM (v7600) and suceeded.

just edit the first few lines of the install.cmd file (notepad), and replace 7100 with 7600.

Comment left October 16, 2009 at 12:54 pm Permanent Link

Jimsie
Comment #13846 from Jimsie [Reply]

Can confirm working with build 7600, Edit install file and change build number, Thanks for a great hack :)

Comment left July 17, 2010 at 7:09 am Permanent Link

Tim
Comment #23653 from Tim [Reply]

Please help to understand how to activate multiple sessions for one user (it said that needs to type in multi) but type in when? can you give more detailed explanation please )))

Comment left November 19, 2010 at 6:42 am Permanent Link

jianwu
Comment #25717 from jianwu [Reply]

It works. Thanks.

Comment left December 12, 2010 at 3:57 pm Permanent Link

missingxtension
Comment #26307 from missingxtension [Reply]

If you want multiple sessions for single account.
You would
run install.cmd -multi
But of course you cant just right click and run administrator if you if you want multi enabled.
Just go to start menu search for cmd right click on it and run as administrator.
Be sure to put the install.cmd in the desktop.
On the command windows opens in admin mode type
cd Desktop
so that you can change directory to the desktop.
on in the desktop just type
install.cmd -multi
basic cmd commands.
cd (change directory)
cd \ (change to c: root)
cd .. (go back one level, folder)
dir (list folder contents)
tab (autopleter) eg. type de then press tab it will complete with a match in the dirrectory, that would be “Desktop”.

Comment left December 17, 2010 at 7:06 pm Permanent Link

sandip
Comment #27399 from sandip [Reply]

It worked for me… I need to change the build-id to 7600. I did multi-user one too. However I don’t know how can I do multiple login of same user from different places ?
When I do remote login with same user. I see who logged in on my Media Center console, gets back to thelogin screen. I was expecting both user should have the same display like vnc ?

Comment left December 26, 2010 at 2:44 pm Permanent Link

JonnyMD
@Reply #28119 from JonnyMD [Reply]

Sandip,
That is the KEY difference b/n VNC and RDP.

Comment left January 2, 2011 at 9:02 pm Permanent Link

David Palmer
Comment #29636 from David Palmer [Reply]

What is the procedure to change the build ID to 7600 or whatever?

Comment left January 15, 2011 at 6:13 am Permanent Link

Miles
Comment #29765 from Miles [Reply]

how to enable this with Windows 7 x64 Sp1?

Comment left January 16, 2011 at 3:40 pm Permanent Link

trafsta
Comment #29877 from trafsta [Reply]

And Windows 7 x86 SP1 too please!

Comment left January 17, 2011 at 4:37 pm Permanent Link
Comment #45537 from J Wilson [Reply]

With all these comments and the article above it was not too clear, so I have listed what worked for me for Windows SP1:

1. Make sure you download the latest Win7SP1 version of the file called W7-SP1-Beta-RDP.zip located at http://www.missingremote.com/guide/sites/default/files/W7-SP1-Beta-RDP.zip

2. For this example, assume you unzip the file to c:\#install

3. If you have run this before rename the file C:\Windows\System32\termsrv.dll.bak to C:\Windows\System32\termsrv.dll.org or anything else different than the .bak extension.

4. Make sure the build number in your installCMD file matches that of your PC, to determine your build number type the following in a CMD prompt

REG QUERY “HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion” /v “CSDBuildNumber”

5. You will get a response similar to this

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion
CSDBuildNumber REG_SZ 1130

6. It is the 1130 that you are looking for, so now edit the INSTALL.CMD file that you unzipped from W7-SP1-Beta-RDP.zip and edit the 6th line

@ECHO OFF
SETLOCAL ENABLEDELAYEDEXPANSION
SET WINVER=Windows 7 Build 7601
SET SET_PRODUCTNAME=”Windows 7″
SET SET_CURRENTBUILD=”7601″
SET SET_CSDBUILDNUMBER=”178″

7.You would change this from

SET SET_CSDBUILDNUMBER=”178″

8. to the following

SET SET_CSDBUILDNUMBER=”1130″

9.So it would look like this (I removed blank lines for clarity but you don’t need to)

@ECHO OFF
SETLOCAL ENABLEDELAYEDEXPANSION
SET WINVER=Windows 7 Build 7601
SET SET_PRODUCTNAME=”Windows 7″
SET SET_CURRENTBUILD=”7601″
SET SET_CSDBUILDNUMBER=”1130″

10. Now you are ready to run the INSTALL.CMD file, which you must “run as administrator”

11. This is the typical output you will get

==================================================================================

Source Folder is C:\#install\, Windows is 64-bit

Taking ownership of C:\Windows\System32\termsrv.dll

SUCCESS: The file (or folder): “C:\Windows\System32\termsrv.dll” now owned by the administrators group.
Granting Administrators rights
processed file: C:\Windows\System32\termsrv.dll
Successfully processed 1 files; Failed processing 0 files
Stopping Remote Desktop Services
The following services are dependent on the Remote Desktop Services service.
Stopping the Remote Desktop Services service will also stop these services.

Remote Desktop Services UserMode Port Redirector

The Remote Desktop Services UserMode Port Redirector service is stopping..
The Remote Desktop Services UserMode Port Redirector service was stopped successfully.

The Remote Desktop Services service is stopping.
The Remote Desktop Services service was stopped successfully.

1 file(s) copied.
Copying “C:\#install\64_termsrv.dll” to “C:\Windows\System32\termsrv.dll”
1 file(s) copied.
Enabling RDP
The operation completed successfully.
Setting fSingleSessionPerUser to 1
The operation completed successfully.
Setting LimitBlankPasswordUser to 1
The operation completed successfully.
Configuring Remote Desktop in Windows Firewall

Updated 1 rule(s).
Ok.

Starting Remote Desktop Services
The Remote Desktop Services service is starting.
The Remote Desktop Services service was started successfully.

Pausing 5 seconds to give service time to start listening
Checking if Service is listening on port 3389
TCP 0.0.0.0:3389 pcname:0 LISTENING
TCP [::]:3389 pcname:0 LISTENING
Service is listening
Done
Press any key to continue . . .

==================================================================================

12. That’s it, now you can connect from a remote machine whilst you are logged on.

13. Enjoy

14. Follow my link if you would like to earn a second income online by setting up an online shop but without holding stock.

Comment left July 14, 2011 at 4:26 am Permanent Link

dj
Comment #45684 from dj [Reply]

i tried this but when i try to login it gove an error that the user has to part of the remote desktop user group. now how do i do this?

Comment left July 21, 2011 at 7:32 pm Permanent Link

Basawaraj
Comment #45690 from Basawaraj [Reply]

Thank you so much J Wilson for detailed descriptions, it worked…..:)

DJ, Make a user which is used to connect to remote system a member of Administrator group or RDP group then it will work.

Comment left July 22, 2011 at 10:12 am Permanent Link
Comment #46728 from Isaac [Reply]

Hi, this software recently stopped working when I updated Windows 7. It only seems to support Build 7100, do you know when the concurrent user sessions script will support the latest update?

Thanks

Comment left August 18, 2011 at 5:49 am Permanent Link

jayTcold
Comment #48278 from jayTcold [Reply]

Major +1, works like a champ!

Hi Issac – I’m running x64 Build 7601 and using the latest posted version of the CMD file:

http://www.mediafire.com/?ubttrlqavne9f3a

Comment left October 4, 2011 at 8:36 pm Permanent Link

Danny HENG
Comment #64374 from Danny HENG [Reply]

J Wilson +1!!

It’s working fine on win 7 Ent 64bit :)

http://www.missingremote.com/guide/sites/default/files/W7-SP1-Beta-RDP.zip

Comment left March 2, 2012 at 1:53 am Permanent Link

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