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Windows Remote Desktop Audio Not Working

Sunday, January 27th, 2019

Hopefully this post can help you solve an issue if you’re experiencing a situation with no audio while connecting to a Windows 10 VM in Hyper-V, but audio is not passing through via RDP.

A client had a Hyper-V deployment on Server 2012 R2, hosting a Windows 7 Virtual Machine. They were using Remote Desktop via a Windows 10 client computer to connect to the Windows 7 VM. Within the RDP shortcut on the Windows 10 machine, they had several options checked under ‘local resources’, ‘configure remote audio settings’:

  • Remote audio playback, play on this computer was checked
  • Remote audio recording, record on this computer was checked

In addition, within the same RDP shortcut file were the following applied settings (edited with notepad):
audiocapturemode:i:1
audiomode:i:0
audioqualitymode:i:2

From within the Hyper-V host, the VM had ‘allow enhanced session mode’ and ‘use enhanced session mode’ applied for both user and server.

Under these settings and while connecting to the Windows 7 Virtual Machine, audio pass-through via RDP was functional. The Windows 10 machine was able to RDP into the W7 VM and play audio files within the VM that would pass through to the local machine’s speakers.

The problem arose after performing a Windows Update that updated the Windows 7 VM to a Windows 10 VM. The update went smoothly and all application data and user data was preserved during the update process. The client was using the same RDP connection settings to connect to the new Windows 10 VM as described above. However, no audio was passed through the VM to the local machine. In fact, there was a red X shown on the speaker icon from within the VM in the taskbar, and upon hovering over the red X the message displayed was “No audio device” and “Code 45”.

Several troubleshooting steps were attempted, including all the following:

  • Verify on the local windows 10 machine that the following services were running and set to automatic startup: Windows Audio, Remote Desktop Services, Remote Desktop UserMode Port Redirector
  • Verify that all of the same services were running on the Hyper-V host server
  • Look for the ‘Remote Audio’ device from device manager on the Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V host system, which existed.
  • Attempt to uninstall, then re-install the ‘Remote Audio’ device on the Windows 10 VM, which failed.
  • Verify that all updates were applied to both the Hyper-V server and the Windows 10 Virtual Machine, which had no impact on the issue
  • On the server, looked at the Group Policy settings under Computer Configuration, Administrative Templates, Windows Components, Remote Desktop Session Host, Device and Resource Redirection and verified that “Limit audio playback quality” was set to “Enabled” and “Audio Quality” was set to “High”
  • SFC and DISM scans were ran within the Windows 10 VM to verify that no OS files were corrupt

The most unusual aspect of this issue was the fact that, when connecting to the Windows 10 Virtual Machine using the Hyper-V Manager, and using ‘Enhanced Session’, the remote audio played on the VM would work just fine and would transfer through for playback on the local machine. Since audio redirection worked just fine when connecting via the Hyper-V Manager, but not RDP, I was certain that it was a setting pertaining to the RDP that connection that was the source of the problem.

After some additional reading, we first thought that the VM was faulty, as it was initially setup as Generation 1 for Windows 7, whereas most recommend using Generation 2 for Windows 10. However, after several days of tweaking settings and testing, we finally found the true source of the issue.

The fix was found in the group policy “Enable Remote Desktop Protocol 8.0”. This setting was set to “Enabled” under the Windows 7 VM for whatever reason. After the update to Windows 10, the setting remained, and caused the audio redirection to fail. Changing this setting from “Enabled” to “Not Configured” followed by a reboot allowed audio redirection to work again. Finally, audio could be passed from the Windows 10 VM to the local Windows 10 machine for playback.

Please Visit and Follow Our New Google+ Page

Sunday, October 5th, 2014

We’ve created a new Google+ page for our new location in Phoenix, Arizona. You can find it here. Please visit and follow:
https://plus.google.com/+Mypctechs-Phoenix-AZ/posts

Our new page features an animated cover image. If you like it, take a look at our quick tutorial explaining how to create your own:

Making Your Android Mobile Device Safe For Kids

Tuesday, October 9th, 2012

Tablets and Smartphones can be a lot of fun for kids. There are plenty of games to play, websites to look at and apps to experiment with. These devices may also seem like convenient babysitters when you’re busy with work or chores. However, simply handing your mobile device over to your little ones poses several potential problems if you don’t take the time to child-proof it first.

Device Dangers
Giving the kids free reign of tablets or Android phones opens the door for them to access inappropriate web content, rack up accidental credit card charges and possibly even damage your device. Before letting your child play, it’s important to take precautions to ensure that both they and your Smartphone or Android tablet stay safe.

Always Monitor
The most obvious way to prevent youngsters from doing or seeing something they shouldn’t is to keep an eye on them. You never want to put your child in front of any electronic device without supervision, be it the television, the computer or your Android tablet. Monitoring your son or daughter’s activity lets you catch problems before they happen and gives you opportunities to teach them what is and isn’t acceptable when it comes to technology.

Keep Content Kid-Friendly
There’s a lot of content out there that you don’t want your children seeing. Fortunately there are many apps available to help you filter out anything objectionable. Mobicip is a kid-friendly browser that uses the same standards that schools do to filter out inappropriate web content. Norton Safety Minder lets you keep an eye on web activity as well as block certain sites. Other apps such as PlaySafe, Kids Place and ChildrenTV give you various tools to manage which apps, games and other content your children are allowed to access when they use your Samsung tablet or other device.

Lock Down Purchases
Accidental purchases, both of full apps and of items within apps, can result in credit card charges that you aren’t prepared for. iPhones include a setting that allows you to turn off in-app purchases, but currently the only way to prevent accidental charges on an Android phone is to block access to apps that may include them. The Famigo Sandbox app gives you a way to do this by allowing you to control which apps your youngsters use as well as minimizing access to other device functions such as text messaging.

Get a Protective Case
Whether it’s grippy or squishy, chunky or sleek, padded or gel-like, get a case for your device before handing it off to your child. Protection is more important than style. Little hands often lack coordination and are therefore more apt to drop things, including expensive electronics. Cases can even become part of the fun. Make your device look like a little person, wrap it in a high-density foam grip or nest it inside a squashy pillow. Whatever type of case you choose, you’ll know your Smartphone or Android tablet is safe and sound.

Before you let your little ones use your Android phone, Samsung tablet or other mobile device, make sure that you’ve taken the appropriate steps to make it safe. Cushion it with a case, install kid-friendly apps and keep an eye on your children as they play to ensure that they have a positive, fun experience.

 

Time for a New Smart Phone?

Thursday, October 4th, 2012

Although I’ve been looking forward to “upgrading” my Android phone to a newer model, I’ve also been somewhat hesitant. I’ve known people who experienced nightmare scenarios when migrating to a new phone, encountering huge challenges during the transition that have kept them offline for days. When you depend on your phone to get your job done, the thought of being without it for any period of time can be scary. There are programs on the market designed to help you move your apps and data, but even with the assistance of an app it is easy for something to go wrong.

With a little preparation, it is possible to move to the new phone and minimize troubles. My goal is to help eliminate some of the worries you might have about transitioning to a new phone by sharing my recent experience.

The day when my new phone arrived, I took it out of the box and plugged it in to complete the charge on the battery. I figure by the time I’m ready, I’ll have a full charge on my new phone.

In the meantime, I looked at the installed applications on my old now old phone. I mostly used my home screens to first write down the names of the critical apps that were being used on a regular basis. My goal was to back up the settings and data for those apps so I could easily move them to the new phone. My list of critical apps included applications such as Car Expense tracking, Notetaking, Email, and Maps. Then there was a second list for the apps I use occasionally, which I made in order to determine if I could eliminate any apps that I no longer needed. Finally, I made a list of the apps I’ve paid for. I wanted to make sure I was able to get these applications activated on the new phone without any hassles.

It is crucial to know your email address, password and server connection settings if you have company or other email you access aside from Gmail. You’ll also want to make sure you have your Gmail account usernames and passwords before you continue. I went through the settings menu of my old phone and recorded the details for any accounts that I found listed. For any accounts that were shown, I double checked all of my notes to make sure I had to correct passwords. Of critical importance is the primary Google account registered on the phone. If you don’t know what the password is on this account you’ll want to try recovery methods before transitioning to the new phone.

Next, I wanted to get a complete backup of my data. The first thing I did was go through my critical apps and looked in the settings for each one to see if any had a built in export function, some of these apps did provide a way to export data from the app to a file on the SD card. Next, I wanted to backup my contacts. Most phones store contacts not only in Gmail and Hotmail, but also on the phone itself. To make sure I had all my contacts stored, I used the app Backup Assistant Plus to perform a backup of the local contacts on my phone.

I then took a USB cable and attached the cable to my phone and to a computer. With the old phone in data transfer mode, I was able to access the contents of the internal phone memory and the SD card from my computer. Via the USB connection from my PC I selected all of the files and folders from the phone’s memory and copied them to a temporary directory on my computer.

With a complete list of email accounts, passwords for apps, registration codes, and a backup of my contacts and data in hand I phoned Verizon to activate my new phone. Give yourself some time for this part since customer service can be a lengthy process. In my case, it took about half an hour on the phone with them before everything was finalized. The time of day you call will greatly determine your wait time for a representative to assist.

Finally, the new phone had been activated and restarted. At this point I successfully activated my Gmail using the same primary username and password as was used on the old phone. Next, after activation I launched to the desktop of my new phone and opened Google Play from the settings menu. Depending on your phone, you may see the same app named Android Market or Google Play. Here, you can select which Account to sync with. This is usually your primary Google account. You then select” My Apps” and then reveal “ALL”. This list has everything you’ve installed on your phone, including free and paid apps. It should now be possible to re-download and install apps that you previously paid for.

Once I re-installed all my paid apps, the final challenge was determining how to restore my data. I attached the new phone to my computer with a USB cable and placed it into the correct mode to communicate with my PC. Once again I could see drives mapped for my phone’s memory and SD card. This step required a little creativity because I had to determine on a case by case basis which apps I needed to migrate data for and how I could import the data to my phone. Once I identified what I needed to transfer, I copied over to the SD card on the new phone data from the temporary directory I made earlier. For apps that previously allowed me to export data on my old phone, I imported the data from within the app using the file that was created from the export operation.

My next step was to restore my contacts which I did using the features of Backup Assistant Pus. And finally, I double checked that my new phone and all apps on the phone were running the latest versions. While not the easiest process in the world, I was up and running in less than two hours. Not bad for a fast new phone with all of the same programs and features I’d come to enjoy.

So, don’t be fearful of getting that upgrade! If you find yourself needing to replace your next smart device it’s possible to do it yourself. Just be sure to take down as much information as you can and make a good backup copy of everything using several methods. Alternatively, if you would like help from someone experienced or would like someone to do it for you, please feel free to give me a call.

GoDaddy Web Servers Hacked

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

GoDaddy, an Arizona web hosting company, experienced severe outages yesterday. The massive Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) began late Monday morning, and the GoDaddy.com site itself went offline. Twitter user Anonymous Own3r, a member of the Anonymous hacktivist group, is claiming sole responsibility for the attack. According to the twitter account, Anonymous Own3r is an official member and security leader of the famous hacktavist group Anonymous, and claims the move is a reaction to the company’s support of the U.S. government’s efforts “to censor and control the Internet,” through its support of the Stop Online Privacy Act (SOPA).

GoDaddy is currently the largest domain registrant in the world, and is four times the size of its nearest competitor. GoDaddy reportedly manages more than 48 million domain names and serves more than 9.3 million customers. The outage affected not only those sites hosted by GoDaddy, but also those registered with the company which includes thousands of websites, big and small. Reports also show the FBI and DOJ, the Recording Industry of America, Motion Picture Association of America, Universal Music and BMI.com websites were also attacked by this movement. The hacking group is trying to claim retribution for anti-piracy efforts by both the government and the entertainment industry.

Who is Anonymous you might ask…..
Anonymous is a loosely associated hacktivist group. It originated in 2003 on the website 4chan.com, an image sharing website where a large number of online community users simultaneously exist as a “digitized global brain”. It is also generally considered a term used for members of certain Internet subcultures, where their actual identities are not known. In its early phase, the concept had been adopted by a spread out online community acting anonymously in a coordinated manner against a loosely self-agreed goal, and was primarily focused on entertainment. In 2008, they began increasingly associating with collaborative, international hacktivism. Although it’s not necessarily tied to a single online entity, many websites are strongly associated with Anonymous. This includes popular imageboards such as 4chan, their associated wikisEncyclopedia Dramatica, and a number of other forums.

Anonymous has claimed involvement in a number of cyber-attacks in the past including attacks against the Pentagon, News Corp, Monsanto, Visa, MasterCard, PayPal, GM, and other Government websites. They have even threatened to destroy Facebook. Their coordinated community is not only involved in cyber-attacks, it has also partly organized activist movements such as Occupy Wallstreet, and have been responsible for tracking down wanted criminals that lead police to an arrest.

A recent statement by Anonymous read: “We will continue to attack those who embrace censorship. You will not be able to hide your ludicrous ways to control us”. So now the question is: Who will be the next target of Anonymous, and how long before we see another attack?


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