As I start to roll out Windows Server 2016 to replace Windows Server 2008 R2 RDP Servers, I’ve been encountering issues that just didn’t exist with Server 2008 R2.  Today’s issue is that by default, if a new user account is created, or if the user’s password expires, or if an admin simply checks the Active Directory “User must change password at next login” property, when the user attempts to connect via RDP instead of getting a password change prompt they instead see this error:

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Title: Remote Desktop Connection

You must change your password before logging on the first time.  Please update your password or contact your system administrator or technical support.

This has the unusual effect of preventing the user from changing their password themselves, leaving the administrator with one of two undesirable options:

  • Turn off the “User must change password at next login” property.
    or
  • Change the password to some other password yourself, and also make sure that property is not set.

In either case, the implication is that some person other than that user now knows what that user’s password.

How to solve the issue – Change the RDP Security Layer

To solve the issue, you have to edit the Session Collection, Security, Configure Security settings and then change the Security Layer setting from Auto-Negotiate to RDP Security Layer.

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Once that change has been applied, remote RDP users return to being able to set a new password.

As an added bonus, this RDP Security Layer is actually more secure, and is also PCI Compliant (at least as of this writing anyway).

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