How to Remotely Manage Windows Server 2016

How to Remotely Manage Windows Server 2016

In this article, I have explored the possible ways you can use to remotely manage your Windows Server 2016 on network. 

I assume you want to manage your servers from another Windows Server. If you want to manage from windows client such as windows 10, download and install Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT). When you install RSAT on your Windows 10, you can then use server manager and management consoles to manage your server remotely. I’ll cover this topic in next article. I also assume your servers are joined with domain.

Following are four methods you can use to remotely manage Windows Server 2016. Make sure to start PowerShell with elevated privileges (Run as Administrator) and then run the commands listed in this article.

PowerShell

Prerequisites

Execute the following command on remote computer you want to access

Enable-PSRemoting -Force

Enable-PSRemoting, when runs on remote computer, configures it to receive the commands. It specifically does the following:

  • Starts the WinRM service
  • Sets the WinRM service to automatically start during the next boot of computer system
  • Enables all session configurations
  • Changes the security descriptor of all session configurations to allows remote access
  • Enables a firewall exception for WS-management

Step-By-Step

Execute the following commands on your local computer

$cred = Get-Credential

Enter-PSSession -Credential $cred -ComputerName <NetBIOS name of Remote computer>

Enter-PSSession creates a session with remote computer so you can run the commands by typing on a PowerShell console of your local computer.

Server Manager

Prerequisites

Execute the following PowerShell cmdlet on remote computer to enable remote management. You can also manually enable from server manager dashboard.

Configure-SMremoting -enable 

Step-By-Step

  1. Open server manager dashboard
  2. Click ‘Add other servers to manage’
  3. You can add a computer from both active directory, and DNS. For this article, choose Active Directory. Provide the full name or partial name and click Find Now
  4. Click the arrow button to move to selected server and click OK
  5. Click ‘All Servers’ located in the right pane of server manager dashboard. Right-click the newly added computer and start managing it

With server manager, you can perform the following task:

  1. Add roles and feature on your remote computer
  2. Restart remote computer
  3. Create a remote desktop connection and PowerShell session with remote computer
  4. Create and schedule a task, view events, create local users and groups, manage disks, start and stop services on remote computer. 

Management Consoles

Step-By-Step

  1. Start an MMC snap-in such as computer management. Click windows icon on your keyboard and then click Windows Administrative Tools
  2. Locate Computer Management and then double-click it to open
  3. Right-click Computer Management (Local) and then click Connect to another computer
  4. Choose ‘Another computer’ and provide NetBIOS or IP address of the remote computer. Click OK and start managing your computer

Remote Desktop

Prerequisites

Execute the following PowerShell cmdlet on remote computer

Set-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server' -Name fDenyTSConnections -Value 0

Set-ItemProperty, when runs allows a desktop connection to the remote computer 

If your windows firewall is turned on remote computer, execute the following command on PowerShell to allow remote desktop connection. 

Get-NetFirewallRule -DisplayGroup "Remote Desktop" | Set-NetFirewallRule -Enabled True

Step-By-Step

Follow these steps to remotely manage computer using desktop services. If you are remoting to windows core server, perform an additional step and run the following on computer you want to manage.remotely.

cscript C:\Windows\System32\Scregedit.wsf /ar 0  
  1. Click windows icon and R from the keyboard. Type mstsc and click OK
  2. Type an IP address or NetBIOS name of the remote server
  3. Click Connect and provide credentials of the remote server. Click OK and start managing your computer

I have listed four methods with their steps you can use to manage Windows Server 2016. If have any suggestion, please feel free to let me know in comments.

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