ITSC Virtual Computer Barn

Remote Desktop Connection

Desktop Pools

Click icon below to logon

Barn Software
Logon Help
  1. At the logon prompt, enter HKUST\your-itsc-account for user name, e.g.
  2. First time logon will take longer. Please be patient.

About

ITSC Virtual Computer Barn let user access to Computer Barn software and Satellite Printers from anywhere at anytime by connecting to virtualised barn desktops over network.

What is Virtual Desktop?

Barn virtual desktops are Windows platform run on servers in data center. User may access the desktops and software there from his/her own PC/notebook. Advantages include high availability, power saving, easy of access and lower management cost.

User Guide

 

System Requirements

The HKUST VDI setup supports the following operating systems and browser,

  • Operating System
    • Windows XP with Service Pack 3
    • Windows Vista with Service Pack 1 or above
    • Windows 7
    • Windows 8
  • Windows Components
    • Internet Explorer 7.0 or above
    • Remote Desktop Connection 6.1 or above, 7.1 for best user experience.

For best user experience, Windows XP and Vista users are strongly recommended to upgrade to Remote Desktop Connection 7.0. Please refer to Appendix A for details.

 

Quick Start

  1. Open Internet Explorer and browse to http://virtualbarn.ust.hk. Please note that Internet Explorer is the only supported browser at the moment.
  2. If the Information Bar appears, click on it and then click Run Add-on or Run ActiveX Control to launch the Remote Desktop Services Web Access Control.
  3. Click on the desktop pool icon to logon.
  4. Click Connect on the Remote Desktop Connection dialog
  5. Input the ITSC network account name ( eg. hkust\cctest ) and password again.
 

Can I save files on barn virtual desktop?

User may store working files on the desktop of the virtual machine. These files, along with user's application settings, will be stored on a file share and made available when user logs on to any virtual barn desktops.

Each user can have up to about 300MB of working space. These storage space is for temporary use and has no backup. There is no way to recover deleted files. Users are advised to keep master copies of their files elsewhere. All working space will be removed on the last day of each academic year.

 

How to print to local printer in virtual machine?

The local printer is appended with "(redirected 2)" as shown below:

If you cannot find your local printer on the virtual machine, please see FAQ.

 

Desktop Pools

At the moment, there is one desktop pool available,

  • Barn Software
    Windows 7 32-bit edition with all barn applications except Stata, VMPlayer and VirtualBox
 

Session Timeout Policy

  1. Idle timeout limit: 15 minutes
  2. After idle for 13 minutes, there will be a warning dialog about idle timeout.

    If there is no user input for 15 minutes, then the session will be automatically disconnected.

  3. Time limit for disconnected session: 15 minutes
  4. After you disconnect the session, you can connect to the same session (without log off) if you connect again within 15 minutes. On the other hand, if you do not connect again within 15 minutes, the session will be terminated (log off) and you will be connect to a different session next time.

 

Appendix A. Upgrade to Remote Desktop Connection 7.0

With the introduction of Windows 7, Microsoft upgrades Remote Desktop Connection to 7.0 that brings important performance improvement and feature updates. Microsoft also makes the changes available to Windows XP and Vista users through the RDC 7.0 upgrade. We highly recommend our users to install this update to get the best user experience.

To install the update, use the following links,

Windows XP users please turn on Network Level Authentication with steps below,

  1. Create a System Restore point.
  2. Click Start, click Run, type regedit, and then press ENTER.
  3. In the navigation pane, locate and then click the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa
  4. In the details pane, right-click Security Packages, and then click Modify.
  5. Click on the Value Data box to deselect highlighted items.
  6. In the Value data box, Type tspkg. Leave any data that is specific to other SSPs, and then click OK.
  7. In the navigation pane, locate and then click the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SecurityProviders
  8. In the details pane, right-click SecurityProviders, and then click Modify.
  9. Click on the Value Data box to deselect highlighted items.
  10. In the Value data box, type , credssp.dll. Leave any data that is specific to other SSPs, and then click OK.
  11. Exit Registry Editor.
  12. Restart the computer.
Further Information

Frequently Asked Questions

General

  1. What is the system requirement for connecting to virtual desktop pools?
  2. I cannot find the local hard drive on the virtual machine.
  3. I cannot find the local printer on the virtual machine.
  4. What is the requirement for easy printing?

Connection

  1. How to connect to virtual desktop pools?

Help

  1. Why I cannot login even if I enter the correct password?
  2. Why I got the ActiveX control not installed or not error after logon to the VDI website?

General

1. What is the system requirement for connecting to virtual desktop pools?

Please refer to the User Guide.

2. I cannot find the local hard drive on the virtual machine.

  1. After login and click on the virtual machine, click Details in the Remote Desktop Connection dialog
  2. Ensure the checkbox of Drives is checked and then click Connect
  3. Then you will see your local hard drive in the virtual machine

3. I cannot find the local printer on the virtual machine.

  1. After login and click on the virtual machine, click Details in the Remote Desktop Connection dialog
  2. Ensure the checkbox of Printers is checked and then click Connect
  3. Then you will see your local printer in the virtual machine
  4. If you still cannot find the local printer, please check to see your computer meet the requirement for easy printing .

4. What is the requirement for easy printing?

  • If you are using Windows XP with Service Pack 2 or below, then you have to install
    1. .NET Framework 3.5
    2. Remote Desktop Connection 6.1 or above (recommended to install Remote Desktop Connection 7)
  • If you are using Windows XP with Service Pack 3 or above, then you have to install only .NET Framework 3.5
  • If you are using Windows Vista, then you have to install
    1. .NET Framework 3.5
    2. Remote Desktop Connection 6.1 or above (recommended to install Remote Desktop Connection 7)
  • If you are using Windows 7, then you do not have to install anything

Connection

1. How to connect to virtual desktop pools?

Please follow the Quick Start section of the User Guide.

Help

1. Why I cannot login even if I enter the correct password?

Make sure you have added the prefix "hkust\" to the logon name, e.g. hkust\cctestpg.

If the preset logon account name is wrong (i.e. "vdi\" prefix), click Use another acount and input the correct one.


2. Why I got the "ActiveX control not installed or not" error after logon to the VDI website?

If you are using Windows XP SP2 or below or Windows Vista without SP1, please upgrade to Windows XP SP3 or Vista SP1.

If you find the Manage Add-Ons icon at the status bar of the browser, the Terminal Service Client Control is disabled.

To enable the control,

  • Double-click the icon to launch the Manage Add-ons dialog.
  • Click to highlight the Microsoft Terminal Services Client Control and then click Enable.
  • Repeat with another entry of the control.
  • Click OK.

If the above tips don't help, please follow the >User Guide to upgrade to Remote Desktop Connection 7.0.