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DirectAccess


GavinCampbell
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I just came across this article about DirectAccess support in 2012E and also noticed it was mentioned a couple times in the forums.

 

http://blogs.technet.com/b/uspartner_ts2team/archive/2012/12/18/windows-server-2012-essentials-includes-directaccess.aspx

 

Does anyone have any experience with DirectAccess? Is it really as good as it sounds. Thinking of setting it up on a few computers so i have full and easy access to my home environment while on the road.

 

Even though it looks like a pain to setup it does look pretty good.

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Not sure about home environments but for enterprise it is supposed to be awesome. I am looking at getting it rolled out next year at my company.

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From the blog post, it appears IP6 is mandatory for DirectAccess. That would rule it out for the vast majority of home users for sure - I don't think many ISP's offer IP6 to their residential customers.

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From the blog post, it appears IP6 is mandatory for DirectAccess. That would rule it out for the vast majority of home users for sure - I don't think many ISP's offer IP6 to their residential customers.

 

I think the IP6 would only need to be enabled on the server for this to be used. I think it can work fine over IP4.

 

"Take note that while DirectAccess uses IPv6, it works over the public IPv4 based Internet by leveraging transitional protocols that allow IPv6 traffic to be transmitted over the IPv4 based networks. This means that we can all leverage the enhanced security of IPv6 without having to wait for the entire Internet to upgrade to IPv6."

 

One day when I have time I will probably look into playing with it.

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@GavinCampbell: thanks for that. I admit I didn't read the entire blog post. So that's good news then, since it's trivial to enable IP6 on the server, and it's on by default anyway.

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Has anyone setup a DirectAccess connection to their WS2012E box yet from either a Win 7 or Win 8 client PC? Am anxious to hear any feedback on your experience.

 

I currently have one remote client PC that uses a Anywhere Access VPN connection to remain connected to my WS2012E across the internet (using a scheduled task) for client backups and network share access. This has proven an effective alternative to Hamachi which I had used in the past. However this client PC isn't a member of my WS2012E domain so I'm not sure DirectAccess would work in this scenario?

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  • 1 month later...

Yes, Jason, I have that working, with the Windows Server 2012 Essentials Release Candidate anyway.

The remote systems were returned to workgroup mode after the install of the connector, and they have no trouble VPNing in after the install (Windows 7, Windows 8).

Not sure about systems where I used the registry tweak to avoid joining the domain temporarily in the first place.

And haven't gotten GA released version of WS2012E tested yet.

 

I see your comments back here, in October 2012:

http://homeserversho...try-on-clients/

 

Is VPN'ing from Windows7 or 8 still an issue for you, on the GA version of WS2012E today?

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Tinkerguy, no. I am able to VPN using the built in Anywhere Access VPN client (SSTP). And on one of my remote family PCs I've even setup a scheduled event to launch the VPN client and initiate a login on system start. It then holds a constant VPN connection to my WS2012E box and performs scheduled client backups via the Internet. As a result I've retired Hamachi free VPN client which I was using prior.

 

Someone mentioned that I could use Direct Access for this client PC instead. However it is remote and not a domain member. Also it's a Win 7 box. Titlerequired.com site reported that there are DA connectivity issues with Win 7 clients.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I read this guide today.... looked easy enough:

 

http://windowsserver2012.pcpro.co.uk/how-guides/60/configuring-remote-capabilities-windows-server-2012/page/0/1

 

Though then I pulled up the technet version, and it seems a hell of a lot more complicated:

 

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj204618.aspx

 

There must be a simple guide to remote access for SOHO users?

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I just went through the "Setup Anywhere Access" wizard without certificates.  I registered a Microsoft free domain.  Opened the appropriate ports on my router and it works just fine.  Strictly speaking it is not a VPN per se, but works just fine for me.  It took me about 10 minutes from start to finish with the wizard.  IPv6 was never even a consideration or issue.

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