The remote access capabilities in CONS3RT have been utilized by users around the globe with great success, delivering simple, browser based remote desktop like performance with out the need for plugins or tunnels.
If you are having trouble with your remote access sessions, it is likely one of these issues:
- Stale cache/cookie/connection: Sometimes the browser will attempt to “help” and the cached session information interferes with new connections. This can also happen if you current session expires and you attempt a connection without logging in first. Try refreshing the browser window or attempt a connection in incognito/safe/private mode.
- Black Screen after SSH: If you enter your SSH credentials then see a black screen (without a disconnection error) you may have entered the wrong username or password. Please close the Remote Access Connection tab, and click the SSH button to try again, and ensure your credentials are correct.
- Pop-up Blocker: As with all software, web browsers update constantly and these updates occasionally block the CONS3RT remote access window. If you experience a situation where you click an remote access button (RDP, VNC, or SSH) and nothing happens, it is very possible that you need to allow pop-ups for HmC or cons3rt.com in your browser.
- Receiving a VNC Connection Error but still have SSH access: For Red Hat 7 and CentOS 7, x11vnc may be having trouble connecting to the display. You can try restarted the system. If you are unable to restart the system or the restart doesn’t work, you can login via SSH and manually restart the required services by running the following:
- Restart GDM
systemctl restart gdm
- Restart VNC
systemctl restart x11vnc
Poor Performance &/or Dropped Connections
- Application Configuration: The configuration of an asset (e.g. firewall, group policy, ACLs) may close or prevent remote access connections. Review the behavior and configuration of all the assets you applied to your system to ensure not conflicts are created.
- Deployed System Size: If the deployed system is underpowered (too few CPUS, too little RAM), it may struggle to provide a useful desktop experience, regardless if it is in the cloud or local. For example, if all the resources are being used to render a complex 3D model, the remote connection may perform poorly and/or drop. Ensure that deployed systems have sufficient CPU & RAM to support your application and a desktop session simultaneously. Users generally find that 2-4 CPU and 4-8 GB RAM works best for simple Windows RDP and Linux VNC desktop sessions. Click here for instructions to adjust RAM or CPU on your deployed system.
- Multiple Remote Access Connections: Multiple remote access windows can be opened simultaneuosly. However, this is limited by your browser’s settings for number of sessions and connections. In order to optimize performance, it is recommended to have no more than three windows open at a time.
- Session Conflict: The deployed operating system may limit the number of simultaneous sessions and/or same user sessions. For example, Windows will only allow the same user to be logged in once, so the second user kicks off the first; Windows 7 only supports one remote session at a time. If someone else has connected to the box, your new session will kick them off. The CONS3RT Deployment Run page has an indicator if there is someone else connected and will warn you.
- Bandwidth: Limited or restricted bandwith on the user side could affect performance. With that said, this features is utilized everyday over cell phone hotspots with great success. Please check your network speeds (https://hmc.hpc.mil/speedtest).
- User-side Network Issues: Some proxy configurations can interfere with the remote access traffic. Double check that with your network admin that your web proxy has been properly configured. Alternately, allow traffic to go direct to the specific site. An IPS can also interfere if it is configured to strictly limit traffic types.
- Undersized Remote Access Server: As projects grow larger, they may need more resources for their remote access connections. The default for a project typically handles 25-30 simultaneous users without issue. If your team is larger and experiences slowness or disconnects, please submit a support request for larger Remote Access resources. It can be upgraded within an hour.