ThinBox Raspberry Pi Image
The ThinBox is based on the Raspberry Pi Thin Client (RPiTC) created by Gibbo. More information about it can be found here. The ThinBox allows quick and easy connection to Microsoft Windows based servers, desktops and virtual machines. Taking less than 30 seconds to boot from power on to desktop and with simple easy to use GUI applications to setup connections this is the easiest way to setup remote access to your systems from anywhere.
Setting Up a Connection
The easiest way to connect to a server or desktop is to double click on the Remote Desktop Client shortcut on the desktop. This will start the client and you can enter connection details for your server or desktop. If you leave out the user name and password you should be prompted when you click connect. The domain option is only for corporate users so home users can ignore this. For corporate users if you don't know your domain then you will need to ask someone in your IT department. The other settings control the behaviour of the session:
- Display - This controls the size of the Window or Full Screen mode.
- Graphics - This controls whether software or hardware graphics mode is used. For modern systems such as Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012 you can use hardware. For older systems the colours may not be correct in which case you will need to use software.
- Sound - This controls whether sound is redirected to the ThinBox. The default is no as overhead for audio is quite high. You can turn this on however and experiment with sound redirection.
- Performance - This controls the end user experience by attempting to reduce the graphics overhead on slower connections. Set this to low, medium or high depending on your network connection.
- Ignore Certificates - This tells the client to ignore any certificate requests. Some systems will try to use certificates to authenticate a client before prompting for a password. In some cases this will help in making a connection.
- Save - Once you have entered all of the details for your connection you can click Save to save this as a permanent shortcut on your desktop. This can then be used to connect to the same system with the same settings in the future.
One of the challenges in a corporate environment is the security required to make a connection. Many organisations require that a secure VPN (Virtual Private Network) is established before a connection can be made. To establish a VPN to a Cisco system you will need to ask your IT department for the PCF file. This contains the details for how to connect to the private network. Now start the VPN Client and select Import PCF. You can browse to the file to import it. Once imported you will need to enter your VPN username and password. These are often DIFFERENT to your normal username and password. Now click Connect. The client will attempt to connect to the VPN and will let you know once it has done so. If anything goes wrong it will display an error.
Hints and Tips
- When connected to a system in Fullscreen mode you can use Ctrl-Alt-Enter to switch to Windowed mode. Use the same combination to switch back to Fullscreen mode.
- The default system is setup for the UK. If you are in another part of the world then you can change the settings accordingly. Right-click on the desktop and select Configurations. From here you can change your Keyboard, Locale and Timezone.
- From the right click menu the applications menu provides access to the Midori and Iceweasel web browsers as well as the FileBrowser and Terminal applications.
- If you need to shutdown or reboot your ThinBox then please use the options from the right-click menu. ThinBox is based on Raspbian which should be gracefully shutdown and not just powered off.
© Copyright Jonty Lovell 2010. All Rights Reserved.