Adding Computer to Windows Domain and Logging In with Domain Account over VPN

I have done this enough times, but just for documentation sake.

So, you get a cool new OS (Windows 8 Release Preview maybe?) and you repave your machine. You want to add to your domain over VPN and then login with your domain creds. Now, you must have an account that has access to add computers to the domain, of course, but this is what you do.

Why would you want to do this? Well, if you are telecommuter, it might be something you run into. If you want to redo your machine at night and not waste time during the workday, is another reason. If anything, it isn’t that complicated, but it could be confusing if you have never done it before. If you have a basic understanding of windows networking and Active Directory you should be able to get what is going on here.

1. Repave your machine!
2. Set up machine with new name
3. Install VPN, connect to your network.
4. Add your machine to your domain as you would when on the LAN network.
5. DO NOT REBOOT. I repeat, DO NOT REBOOT. Even though Windows wants you to!
6. Go to user management and add the domain user you want to login as to the local admin group.
7. Now, feel free to reboot.
8. Drink a beer.
9. When the login screen comes up, login as your local machine account that you setup when you repaved your machine.
10. Connect to VPN.
11. “Switch Account” back to login screen (VPN is still connected!)
12. Login as the domain account from step #6.
13. Profit.


Cisco VPN – Launch a Hidden Constant PING Window on Connect

The other day I blogged about getting Cisco VPN to stay connect in Vista. The fix was a constant ping. It is all good but then you have this CMD window open all day in your taskbar, just taking up space, etc.

I decided to workaround it.

I created a .vbs (Visual Basic Script) called pingserver.vbs and put this in it:

Set WshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
cmd = "ping servername -t"
Return = WshShell.Run(cmd, 0, True)
set WshShell = Nothing

(replace servername with your name of the server you want to constant ping)

Then in Cisco VPN. Options Menu->Application Launcher. Check "enable" and browse to your VBS. Then when you connect it will run that VBS file, and you will have a hidden constant ping going to your server. Nice..



Cisco VPN Client on Microsoft Vista – Connection Issues?

If you are using the Cisco VPN Client on Vista (if you can even get it installed, you need one of the latest versions) Then you probably have ran into connection issues. "Connection Reset By Peer" or "Failed to Enable Virtual Adapter" or "User Authentication Failed" etc etc. I recently redid my Vista box and was just having major issues with the Cisco VPN Client. It would connect for 3 minutes, disconnect. 8 minutes, disconnect. 2 Hours, disconnect. I couldn’t stay connected for any period of time. A possible fix?

Set up a constant ping. To a server or device on the network you are connecting to. I have been connected non-stop for 2-3 days now without issue. This was just not happening before.

start->run->cmd> ping <ip or server name> -t

and just let it run in the background, it seems to keep the VPN Client connected!


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