June 12, 2024

RE: Remote Assistance article followup

Ron Crumbaker posted a great article that included a script to launch an unsolicited Remote Assistance session. Using his script as a guide, I went to work integrating Remote Assistance into some other tools that I wrote, but I ran into some issues with the Windows Firewall and Group Policy in testing.Checking the Remote Assistance exception only does part of what is necessary for Remote Assistance. The following are also required:

  • 135:TCP:*:Enabled:RPC (Port 135)

  • %WINDIR%SYSTEM32Sessmgr.exe:*:Enabled:Remote Assistance

  • %WINDIR%PCHealthHelpCtrBinariesHelpsvc.exe:*:Enabled:Offer Remote Assistance

  • %WINDIR%PCHealthHelpCtrBinariesHelpctr.exe:*:Enabled:Remote Assistance – Windows Messenger and Voice

Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 301527 explains the process in detail, at least from the Windows Firewall perspective. Also, for enterprise level administration, it would be desirable to set up the Helper options in Group Policy.

Offer Remote Assistance is disabled by default. If you want to allow experts to remotely control your computer you must enable Offer Remote Assistance using Group Policy. To do this, open the Group Policy editor on the computer to which you will be connecting and enable support for Offer Remote Assistance. The Group Policy setting can be found in Local Computer PolicyAdministrative TemplatesSystemRemote Assistance. Select Offer Remote Assistance Setting and then select Enabled. The user who will be giving assistance must be a member of the Local Administrators Group on the receiving machine or added as a Helper in the Offer Remote Assistance Group Policy Setting.To add User and Groups to Group Policy:1. Go to Offer Remote Assistance Group Policy, and in the Helpers area, click Show. 2. Click Add and then enter the Domainuser account.

More details are here in question 2. I hope this saves you some time!

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Jason Benway

Christ follower, husband, father, IT geek, and Xbox gamer

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