Remote desktop servers allow multiple users to work on the same computer and share resources. This allows for easier management by the I.T. staff, because all programs are run from a centralized location. However, when a user's session gets hung up on a Remote Desktop server, you can't just reboot the server to get the user working again without impacting every other user in the environment. This document describes the process you can use to log off hung up user sessions using the Remote Desktop tools.
Windows 2008 & 2008 R2
Windows 2008 & 2008 R2 use a program called TSADMIN.msc to manage users who are logged on via Remote Desktop. Windows 2008 uses the older naming convention of Terminal Services, where 2008 R2 uses the current naming convention of Remote Desktop. Almost everything is the same between the two server except for this naming convention.
To launch TSADMIN on a 2008 server, open the following:
Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Terminal Services > Terminal Services Manager
To launch TSAdmin on a 2008 R2 server, open the following:
Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Remote Desktop Services > Remote Desktop Services Manager
You should see the following screen once you've clicked on the application name.
All of the users will be listed along with their Remote Desktop ID, Activity State, Idle Time and Log On Time. Locate the username of the person with the locked session, and click on their name. New options will appear in the Actions column. Locate the Log Off option, and click on it to end the users session and clear the server's memory of their work.
The Log Off process may take a minute to complete. Once the username dissapears from the list, you can have the user log back in to the server and begin working again.
Windows 2012 & 2012 R2
Server 2012 and 2012 R2 removed the TSADMIN application and replaced it with functionality directly on the Server Manager interface.
To access this interface, you can either click on the icon on the Task Bar or by opening the following:
Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Server Manager
Once you have the Server Manager window open, you may have to wait for it to load all of its service information. Once the application has finished loading, click on the Remote Desktop Services entry in the left hand column.
The left column will minimize down to icons, and you will be shown new options. Click on the entry listed under Collections. This will open up the Connections window and show you all of the users who are currently logged on to the Remote Desktop Server. Right-click on the locked up user's entry in the list to open the options window.
Select Log off to close the user's Remote Desktop session and clear the lock. You can now have the user log back on to the server and continue working.