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Determine Whether User Connected Through Remote Desktop on the Command-Line

Using the Windows "qwinsta" command-line tool, you can determine whether your user account (or someone else's account if you have admin privileges) is currently actively connected to a Windows server through Remote Desktop. This method is handy for automated processing (batch scripts) or monitoring server state. I'm sure there are other uses for this ability, please share your ideas. Below are examples of connection status.

In this first example, the user is logged on and actively connected to the server through Remote Desktop. Note "rdp-tcp#744" under "SESSIONNAME" and "Active" under "STATE".

 SESSIONNAME       USERNAME                 ID  STATE   TYPE        DEVICE
>rdp-tcp#744 kansas 10 Active rdpwd

In this next example, the user is logged on to the server, but has disconnected the Remote Desktop. Noticed that the field under "SESSIONNAME" is empty and that the "STATE" shows "Disc", which stands for disconnected.

 SESSIONNAME       USERNAME                 ID  STATE   TYPE        DEVICE
> kansas 10 Disc rdpwd

In this third example, the user has connected once again through Remote Desktop. "qwinsta" shows a new "SESSIONNAME" and "STATE" is set back to "Active" again.

 SESSIONNAME       USERNAME                 ID  STATE   TYPE        DEVICE
>rdp-tcp#745 kansas 10 Active rdpwd

It'd be fairly simple to write a batch script that monitors this connection and determine whether the user logged on or connected. Once the script determined that much, it's fairly easy to perform an automated action based on that knowledge.

Chieh Cheng
Fri, 23 Apr 2010 19:08:26 +0000

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