Remote Web Workspace Really Wont Work! (RWW Squared)

For those of you not familiar with it, Windows Server 2003 Small Business Server offers a really slick feature that enables small business users to harness the power of terminal services cheaply and effectively without the need of any fancy port forwarding on the firewall or a terminal server. The technology is often called RWW and it basically sets up and forwards users to their own computer in the workplace just by logging on to a secure website.  For the most part it is great – until it just doesn’t work.

The service isn’t without it’s problems. First of all, numerous changes to Internet Explorer over the years in response to the thousands of vulnerabilities and security threats have basically made it impossible for the computer challenged to get RWW working without some IT assistance. The program, realistically, requires you to add your corporate site to IEs trusted sites list, enable the disable-by-default (and very much hidden active-x control which shows up as a little gear on the lower right hand corner of IE), and actually log in one time to hold these settings. Moreover, it seems every round of MS Updates seems to knock these settings back to their defaults leaving users frustrated and grumpy.

But these are minor inconveniences when compared to a problem to which my good friend and knowledgeable colleague, Devon put me on.

In fact, under certain circumstances, Remote Web Workplace won’t work at all despite having the active-x control  (supposedly) enabled and installed, the site added to the safe sites list and having a valid certificate installed.  There is a problem at a deeper level that has to be addressed on some installations of Windows XP SP3.  Oddly, enough the active-x control doesn’t even show up at all, so there is no way to re-enable nor any indication that it actually isn’t enabled.

While this problem can actually manifest itself in many ways, the one that my colleague specifically ran into was using RWW.

The error message he received was

“This Web site requires the Terminal Services Client, which does not appear to be installed on this System. Install the latest client and ensure that you have the most recent Windows Updates before continuing.”

The fix, if needed, involves a little registry hack and then re-registering one dll file. It is rather simple and is only actually needed is this particular line in the registry appears. If the following line doesn’t appear in the registry, then your issue may not be related to this and I would suggest going over the basics again.

Anyway, here’s the fix:

1. Remove the following registry key if it exists.


2. Close Internet Explorer and try it again.

IF it still doesn’t work, then re-register mstscax.dll file in the following manner

  1. Exit Internet Explorer.
  2. Click Start, click Run, and the type or copy and paste the following text in the Open box, and click OK:

    %windir%\system32\regsvr32 mstscax.dll

  3. At the confirmation prompt, click OK.
  4. Restart Internet Explorer, and try to connect to your small business server.

And that’s all there is to it.

If you would like more detailed information, the whole fix and all of the manifestations of the issue can be found at;EN-US;951607


I sure hope that this saves at least  one of you a lot of frustration and time. I can imagine how infuriating this would be!!!! Now RWW Really Will Work!!!!!!

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