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FAQ > How to use Windows Terminal Server to access Fermilab Time & Labor System (FTL)
How to use Windows Terminal Server to access Fermilab Time & Labor System (FTL)
Article: KB0010638 Published: 2012-12-05 Last modified: 2017-06-26

How to use Windows Terminal Server to access Fermilab Time & Labor System (FTL)

Who needs to use the Windows Terminal Server?

If you need to fill out your FTL timecard but do not have a web browser that works with the Java version of the FTL system, you can use the Windows Terminal Server. This is particularly useful for people who use Linux, FNALU (Fermilab's central Unix server), or Mac OS X.   

What is required to access the Windows Terminal Server?

Your computer must have the appropriate Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) client installed. The RDC client is already installed on all Fermilab Windows computers and FNALU nodes. 

If you are offsite, you need to connect to the Fermilab network via VPN before launching your RDC client. If you get connected to the Fermilab network via VPN but still have problems connecting to Windows Terminal Server, please check with your Internet Service Provider and make sure TCP port 3389 is not  blocked. If you are onsite and cannot connect via RDC, you may be located in a restricted network and need to use the Fermilab VPN. 

How to install the RDC client

  • Mac: See the installation instructions here.
  • Linux:
    • If you are running Scientific Linux, open a terminal window and run the command "yum install rdesktop".
    • If you are NOT running Scientific Linux, check with your OS's package manager to obtain the latest version of rdesktop.
  • FNALU: The RDC client is already installed. 
  • Windows: The RDC client is already installed. 

How to start FTL from the Windows Terminal Server

  • Mac: See the instructions here.
  • Linux: Open a terminal window and run this command:  $ rdesktop fermi-ftl.fnal.gov -u username -d fermi     
    Note: Here, username is your Kerberos principal/account name. This command has been tested with rdesktop 1.6.0 and 1.7.2. If you experience any problems connecting to the Windows Terminal Server, please update your RDC client to the most current version in your Linux distribution.
  • FNALU: Log on to one of the FNALU nodes, export your display, and run the following two commands:
    •  $ setup rdesktop
    •  $ rdesktop fermi-ftl.fnal.gov &
  • Windows: See the instructions here.  

How to quit your FTL Terminal Server session

1. Log off from the FTL application by clicking "Log Off" in the upper-right corner of the FTL page.
2. Quit your RDC client:

  • Mac: Click the close button or close the Remote Desktop Client from Finder. When disconnecting from the Terminal Server, you may receive a warning message that says disconnecting will leave programs running on the Terminal Server. This is expected, and you should click "OK" to disconnect.
  • Linux: Click the close button.
  • Windows: Click the close button.When disconnecting from the Terminal Server, you may receive a warning messsage that says disconnecting will leave programs running on the Terminal Server. This is expected, and you should click "OK" to disconnect.

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