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How many remote connections can be made in windows server 2008. I want to work with 2 my friends on a same machine. But windows server 2008 forces, second user to logout when 3rd user try to login.

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migrated from Nov 3 '09 at 15:35

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I've added the additional text from your other question and voted to close the other one as the duplicate. – squillman Nov 3 '09 at 15:43
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Just two if running the default "admin mode" for terminal services.

You can stretch it a couple ways, neither considered "legit" though...

1) Install VNC server and have third user use VNC client to connect.

2) Use the /admin switch with your RDP client to have the third user get the console.

Just for suggesting those I'll probably have black helicopters over my house later today...

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I can't believe it took this long for someone to mention VNC... – RainyRat Nov 3 '09 at 15:56
A lot of people won't suggest VNC because if someone connects to the console to install an app(some will require this) they'll be contending with the VNC user. – sparks Nov 3 '09 at 17:17
Yes, we tend to exclusively use either RDP or VNC (depending on the server) for that reason. – RainyRat Nov 3 '09 at 21:34

It sounds like by remote connections, you mean remote desktop. In this case, Remote Desktop in Administration mode is limited to 2 connections at a time. Should you want to use more than this, then you will need Application mode, which requires you to have a Terminal Services Licence server and a Client Access Licence for each user who wishes to connect to it, which cost money.

An unsupported work around to get 3 connections is to connect to the console, the actual view you get if you were to sit in front of the server and connect a monitor and keyboard. Using this method is not a fantastic idea as it will log off anyone who is actually accessing the server at the console. Should you wish to use this method the command to do so is:

mstsc /v addressOfServer /admin
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Without using terminal services and a license server I believe you're limited to 2 simultaneous users connecting to your server. To get a third connection you need to use the console session which can be connected to by starting the rdp client from run with:

mstsc /console  (pre version 6, works with server 2003 not 2008)
mstsc /v addressOfServer /admin  (post version 6, server 2008)

You could use hyper-v or windows virtual server and each have your own instance to play with, or you could setup/buy the proper licensing to have all 3 of you connected at the same time. Although having 3 people connected to a server isn't the best idea if you're all going to be installing software possibly at the same time anyway.

If you're students I would recommend the virtual server for each of you approach and look into getting licensing for it for free at

Edit: After reading Sam's Answer and looking into it a bit more it looks like VNC is possibly the only way to connect to the console session on 2008. I haven't tried myself to verify it, but the impression I received from the technet blogs is that the new /admin flag will connect you to an administrative session but not necessarily the console.

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The console switch has been replaced by /admin in the new versions of the RDP client (6.0 or later) – Sam Nov 3 '09 at 17:27
I think its actually 6.1 or later (6.0 still had it with both working). I also think that it stops working with anything later than 2003/XP. The "session 0" cannot be connected to in vista/win7/server 2008. Trying to find more on that since I don't have much for Server 2008 servers created yet. – sparks Nov 3 '09 at 18:04
sorry, your correct, it is 6.1 or later – Sam Nov 4 '09 at 12:49

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