The Real (and Virtual) Adventures of Nathan the IT Guy

Oct 21 2008   5:54PM GMT

Servers and Outgoing VPN’s

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

I ran into this one today. The client has a Windows Server 2003 R2 Server. They needed to enable a VPN connection to another company for data transfers etc. Upon disconnecting they figured nothing was wrong. A call came in that stated the remote users could no longer RDP into the server. The first thing I wanted to find out is if the host site had internet, so I opened up RDP and tried to connect, nothing, okay I figured internet was down. I called the client and got them to test the internet, it was fine… Next step I took was to get onto the server somehow, RDP was down, luckily we have remote software that can connect through SSL from anywhere to anywhere. I got connected to the server, checked for errors in event viewer, and there were no errors whatsoever. I checked the firewall, RDP port was still forwarded, ran ipconfig /all, and the local IP was the same. I did however notice that the VPN connection still had an IP address, which I thought was strange. I checked network connections and noticed that the VPN Connection was disconnected. Since I had no direct way to stop a connected(but really disconnected) VPN, I figured I would click connect. It connected fine. I then disconnected from it again and all of a sudden RDP was back!Moral of the story is, if you use a VPN to an external company for whatever reason, disconnect but also make sure you test with any remote users, as you may have inadvertently cut them off! NS

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