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Windows XP – Offer Remote Desktop Assistance with predefined ip

If you want to automate the remote desktop assistance (not remote desktop) with Windows XP you run into some problems. First of all I ran into the problem that „rcimlby.exe“, which seems to be a good point to start lacks with its commandline parameter. I thought that „rcimlby.exe“ has a hidden parameter to submit a computer netbios name, or a ipaddress to connect directly to the computer after launching the application, but after debugging the exe I didn’t find any indication for a computerobject parameter, so I started to look elsewhere and found a pretty simple solution.

As it turns out, rcimlby.exe calls a help website (Windows XP help) from where you can start a remote desktop assistance. But this website hasn’t a parameter for the computerobject as well and it seems to be impossible to call this website within the help explorer, so I traced the way rcimlby.exe calls this website and found this call:

But there is no way to add a parameter for the computerobject, so I started to find out where these weird (and never used 😀 ) html helpfiles are stored (especially where UnSolicitedRCUI.htm is stored)

All help files are stored within c:\windows\pchealth, and if we follow the -url path from my call above we find our desired help file.

After some (advanced year 2k) html analysis I figured out that the html helpfile was not designated to read a parameter or something like that. That means you have to type in the computer netbiosname / ipaddresse every time you want to do a remote desktop assistance session, which is a great benefit if you want to automate things (thanks microsoft).

Conclusion? Edit the UnSolicitedRCUI.htm file!
Just kidding.

We copy UnSolicitedRCUI.htm, rename it to… RemoteAssistance_patched.htm and edit the copy. This file haven’t changed within the past 10 years, so my patch should work for all XP Versions (SP0-SP3).

If you have opened the RemoteAssistance_patched.htm go to line 286 (below the line where R2D2 has immortalized himself).

After editing it should look like:

I added a small javascriptcode (i developed this solution 2002, sorry for the awful piece of code ) that grabs the first parameter from the url and add it to the input field. So all you have to do is edit your remote desktop assistance call to:

and replace YOUR-IP with the netbios name / ipaddress of the computer.
Additional you can add a small piece of javascript code to fire the button on document loaded, to fully automate a remote desktop assistance request.

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