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DS 6.9 Remote control stopped working.

Created: 08 Mar 2013 | 5 comments

Server: DS 6.9 (517) SP5 on Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 Std. SP1

Clients: DAgent 6.9.517 (64 Bit) on Windows 7 pro  6.1.7601 SP1

Problem: DS Remote control won't connect. The RC window stalls on a completely white page with "Waiting for client to accept connection" message, and then eventually times out with "unable to make an image thread connection to the remote machine" error message. Same problem on all clients. 

I don't use the DS Remote control feature daily so I just discovered one day that it no longer worked. I scoured the forums for any help I could find and threw every configuration switch that was suggested on both the server side and the DAgent client side, booting and rebooting for a day and a half trying to find where it was broke. Then, I decided,maybe it was a MS update to the server that caused the problem days ago. I removed the 7  most recent MS updates from 2/27/2013. After a reboot, RC started working again. I then started adding them back one-at-a-time to find the offending update. After each one was installed and a reboot, RC continued to work. Now they are all back in and RC still works. 

I don't think this is a fix because I still can't explain it; maybe the updates were installed in a different order this time or something. I just thought I'd post it here because it may help someone else who is experiencing the same problem save a day and a half of searching.


Operating Systems:

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Gibson99's picture

DS 6.9 remote control has never worked right in win7, and they aren't going to fix it either - they're focusing on 7.x and are probably going to EOL DS6.9 pretty soon.  you probably already know you can't remote in to a win7 machine unless someone's logged in using ds remote.  

also, i've seen it where simply restarting the express service on the ds itself will help.  

we use pcanywhere, but at a previous job we used dameware (now owned by solarwinds) and other remote control tools that work better than DS remote ever could.  even NS 6's carbon copy was at times more reliable than ds remote.  the biggest difference for me using PCA vs DS remote is that when the user gets a UAC prompt or has a window open w/ admin rights (such as regedit), you don't lose control of the kb/mouse in PCA.  in DS remote, you do, rendering it useless.  

all that said - ds remote is one of the only negative things i have to say about 6.9 - other than that i love it, and we actually use ds 6.9 instead of the deployment part of 7.1 because it JUST WORKS.  

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SK's picture

DS 6.9 still has a life and will not be EOL'd soon.  In fact, you will be seeing a 6th service pack released for it this year.  MR3 has already been released, so you may wish to implement that in order to benefit from the latest code.

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KPuffer's picture


Yup, I did the same thing a while back: paid the long dollar and bought the upgrade to 7.1, installed it, choked on it for about a week or two, couldn't stand trying to constantly fix it, downgraded back to 6.9, and sticking with it (as long as possible). I don't use the remote control frequently so it works good enough for my meager purposes right now.

Thanks for the comments and thanks @SK for the encouragement too.

Gibson99's picture

we still use other parts of 7.1 like patch, inventory, reporting, sw portal, and of course PCA, but imaging and initial builds are handled by DS 6.9 here.  

i don't purport to know when DS6.9 will eventually EOL but support has told me that some parts of it already have, such as the web console.  support has also told me that they don't intend to fix DS remote since it would essentially be a complete rewrite to make it work in vista/w7/server08 due to the kernel changes.  of course, i've spoken to support reps who were totally wrong on more than one occasion (and not just at symantec - i'm sure every company has had that problem, including our own internal help desk), so just like anything else you read on the internet, take it with a grain of salt.

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ianatkin's picture

Don'f feel bad. I've heard at Vision in the past that getting DS7 up to scratch was a priority; it was a resource drain supporting both DS6 and 7. It's the only piece in CMS6 which didn't go EOL and the expectation always was that an EOL for it would be imminently annouced. Symantec Support's opinion pretty much mirrored this.

However, DS6 still has a large customer base and it is still a world class product despite it's development hiatus. Symantec are not blind to that.

As SK says, the proof of the pudding that DS6 has not been marked for EOL in in the upcoming SP6 release. My advice with DS6 customers is don't pressured to migrate unless you'll see business benefit by moving to DS7.

Ian Atkin, IT Services, Oxford University, UK

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