How to Shut Down Windows 10 via Remote Desktop (RDP)

The issue with shutting down a PC or server via Remote Desktop on Windows 8 (and 8.1) applies to Windows 10 as well.

Why Microsoft has chosen to make it so difficult is hard for me to understand, but perhaps their own engineers have sausage fingers and keep switching off instead of logging off their servers remotely? Or could it possibly be related to the HP engineer that accidentally formatted all the servers of Australian bank client CommBank? Probably the former, but the CommBank incident is an interesting read for any System Center admins :-)

So, on to the issue at hand: maybe this looks familiar to you? I am referring to the shutdown icon menu only showing “Disconnect” as an option, so please ignore all the tiles.

Shutdown Windows 10 via RDP 01

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Script to Re-Map Windows Shares

I had some problems with the Windows Shares becoming unavailable at odd times, just randomly now and then. This meant I could no longer list and open my media files from my LG Home Theater or my Raspberry Pi.

I discovered that restarting a few services associated with Windows Folder Sharing solved the problem without the need to reboot.

This is a quick little script that I use to re-map my shared folders in Windows, including the disk shares (i.e. d$, e$) every night:

net stop LanmanServer /y
net start LanManServer
net start Browser
net start HomeGroupListener

Copy these lines in to a text-file using Notepad and save the file as “Sharemap.bat”, for example.

To set up an automatic scheduled job to run the script, open Task Scheduler (Start -> Run -> taskschd.msc) and set up a basic task: Right-click the folder area on the left and select “Create basic task”.

For the actions pane, select “Start a program” and point to the Sharemap.bat script.

For the triggers, you can set it to run every night at 5 in the morning or something similar.

If you’re using TrueCrypt and need to make disk shares (d$, e$ etc) map up after TrueCrypt mapping has taken place, create a trigger and set it to run “At log on”, with a delay that’s long enough to allow you to mount the TrueCrypt volumes before it runs (5-10 minutes maybe).

Alternatively, you can simply create a shortcut to “sharemap.bat” or save the file directly to your desktop and run it manually as needed.

How it works:
Stopping the LanmanServer service automatically stops the child services Browser and HomeGroupListener as well, automagically – so we only need to start those services, or at least I chose to do it that way to be on the safe side.

These network services are responsible for making Windows Shares available on the network, so it is sometimes necessary to restart them if there are any issues with finding shares, especially disk shares that are not automatically mapped by Windows, caused perhaps by delayed mounting from TrueCrypt or similar applications.

Lightpack: Ambient Backlighting for your PC

The LightpackA few guys from different corners of the world have gotten together and created the Lightpack – an affordable ambient backlighting system, much like Philips’ Ambilight.

The drawback compared to Philips’ system, is that the Lightpack requires software to be installed on a computer to run.

The FAQ states that they are working to get support for up to two Lightpacks in sync via the included Prismatik software, to enable multi-display and better large (50″+) diagonal displays support.

Click here to check out the gang’s Kickstarter for more info on the Lightpack.

Personally, I think it’s both fairly cheap and looks like a neat package. Since I’ve been waiting for something like this for my PC for a while, I’m now officially a backer!

How to mount OwnCloud as a network drive in Windows 7 using WebDAV

Owncloud logo

Enabling Simple File Sharing over HTTPS and/or HTTP is a requirement for mounting OwnCloud as a disk in Windows.

OwnCloud supports mounting using WebDAV, however Windows 7 doesn’t have Simple File Sharing enabled out of the box. This is a requirement for WebDAV to work.

I struggled a bit to find the info on how to do this, but when I finally got it down, why not share the knowledge, right?

So here’s a quick guide to making this work on Windows 7 and how to mount your OwnCloud instance as a disk drive:

1. Run REGEDIT (use the Windows key + R to open the run dialog box, type REGEDIT and press enter).

2. Navigate to the key:


3. In Parameters, there should be keys like “ClientDebug“, “LocalServertimeout” etc…:
Right click and select “New DWORD (32-bit) value” (or simply “New DWORD value” if on 32-bit Windows 7).

4. Name the key “BasicAuthLevel“:
If your OwnCloud is using HTTPS, give the key the value of “1” to enable Simple File Sharing over HTTPS.
If your OwnCloud is using HTTP, give the key the value of “2” to enable Simple File Sharing over both regular HTTP and HTTPS.

5. Reboot! (May sometimes work without reboot.)

6. Run CMD to open a command prompt. (Use the Windows key + R to open the run dialog box, type CMD and press enter).

7. Run the command as shown below, where Z is used as the letter for the disk. If Z is occupied, choose another letter:

net use Z: \\myowncloud.instance.tld\remote.php\webdav /user:yourusername yourpassword /PERSISTENT:YES

In the command line above, replace “yourusername” and “password” with your username and password, used to connect to your OwnCloud instance. Also replace myowncloud.instande.tld with the url to your OwnCloud instance. This may be different depending on your setup, but it is the same address as you would type into the web browser.

The PERSISTENT:YES setting will ensure that Windows attempts to reconnect the disk on next logon.

If your OwnCloud instance is in a subfolder, for example “owncloud”, then the syntax could be:

net use Z: \\coolwebsite.tld\owncloud\remote.php\webdav /user:JohnMan76 p@ssw0rd /PERSISTENT:YES

Alternate syntaxes:

net use Z: /user:JohnMan76 p@ssw0rd /PERSISTENT:YES
net use Z: /user:JohnMan76 p@ssw0rd /PERSISTENT:YES

Battlefield 4: First Official Gameplay Trailer

The first Battlefield 4 trailer has been made public on Youtube. It’s a 17 minute long single-player gameplay video titled “Fishing in Baku”.



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