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RemoteLab Status

No known issues at this time. RemoteLab now requires the use of the SU VPN from off campus connections.

FAQ's and other information:


What is Remote Lab?

The iSchool's Remote Lab is a "virtual" computer lab that allows students and faculty to remotely access an iSchool lab computer from their home, dorm room or anywhere with a stable broadband internet connection.

Important considerations

  • Save your work to your network (H:\) drive! – Just like our physical labs, any files saved to the local hard drives will be removed.
  • Save your work often! – Although we consider the RemoteLab platform to be stable, working remotely brings many factors into play, such as unexpected network outages, ISP issues or problems with your home network or personal devices. Saving often will help avoid losing your hard work and valuable time.
  • Please be considerate of other users and properly sign out of RemoteLab when you are finished working (see How do I disconnect from Remote Lab?) – There are a limited number of seats available. Properly disconnecting from RemoteLab will ensure that the computer is immediately ready for the next user.

Connecting to Remote Lab

Connecting to RemoteLab works basically the same regardless of your computer's operating system but, starting at step #3, we'll include instructions for both Windows and Mac OSX to help avoid any confusion.


Step 1: Connect to the SU Network

Off campus connections to RemoteLab require the use of the Syracuse University Remote Access tool (SURA). Any on campus connection, via an ethernet port or via AirOrangeX does not require the use of SURA.

Information about how to download and use the SURA tool can be found at this link.

Step 2: Make your reservation


Using a web browser, navigate to https://remotelab.ischool.syr.edu

If you are not logged in already, you will be prompted to do so using your SU NetID and Password

Please read over the terms of service and then click on Make My Reservation to get started

On the following screen you'll see the computer which is reserved for you. Click on Connect to Remote Lab

Clicking the "connect" button will generate a Remote Desktop Connection (RDP) file which contains information about your reservation. Please note: 

  • A reservation only works for you (your NetID)
  • It is a one-time-use file and cannot be re-used when the current session expires or after you log out
  • If you need to connect again at a later date, you need re-visit the site and make a new reservation

Step 3: Open your reservation (.rdp) file

This step is slightly different depending on your computer's operating system. Before proceeding, make sure you're following the correct instructions for your computer.

Windows 7 or later

Select the "Open with" button and make sure Remote Desktop Connection is selected and click "OK"

If you'd like, you can check the box to do this automatically from now on for future RemoteLab connections

On the security prompt, you can safely go ahead and click "Connect"
On the login screen, your NetID should be filled in for you. Enter your password and click "OK"



Before proceeding, make sure that you have installed the Microsoft Remote Desktop app from the Mac App Store

Select the "Open with" button and then click "Choose..."
In Finder, browse to your Applications folder and select Microsoft Remote Desktop.app
On the login screen, your NetID should be filled in for you. Enter your password and click "OK"


How do I disconnect from Remote Lab?


Simply "sign out" of Windows on your RemoteLab session.

Click on the RemoteLab Start menu, click on your name in the upper left, and choose "Sign out".

You will also be automatically signed out after 60 minutes of idle time (no keyboard or mouse interaction)


Common errors and resolutions

Error: "The Mac cannot connect to the Windows-based computer." OR "Remote Desktop Connection cannot verify the identity of the computer that you want to connect to."


After successfully creating a reservation on the RemoteLab website, connecting to the RemoteLab desktop fails with one of the following errors: "The Mac cannot connect to the Windows based computer." or "Remote Desktop Connection cannot verify the identity of the computer that you want to connect to."


User Action:

These errors are caused by the outdated version of Microsoft Remote Desktop application. Please install the updated version of the app as described earlier in this guide in the "Mac OSX" section. We also recommend that you uninstall the old version of the app to avoid confusion. If you choose to leave the old version installed, you'll need to make sure to open your RemoteLab connection (.rdp) files with the new version.


Error: Mac OSX display issues


Using the Microsoft Remote Desktop app on Mac OSX, you may be unable to see the entire RemoteLab desktop. This is most often due to issues with graphics scaling on high-resolution MacBook displays.

User Action:

Go to the Mac menubar while the Remote Desktop app has focus and, under the "Window" menu, toggle both the "Full screen" (or cmd+1) and the "Scaling" options (or cmd+2) as pictured below:

Error: "An internal server error occurred while processing your request"


This issue is most often caused by expired data in your browser cache. 

User Action:

Usually this can be resolved by simply logging out and back in to the RemoteLab website. If that doesn't fix it, you to clear your browser's cache.

Error: "Connection reset by peer"


A connection was forcibly closed by a peer. This normally results from a loss of the connection on the remote socket due to a timeout or a restart. On a datastream socket, the connection was reset. This reset could be generated locally by the network system when it detects a connection failure, or it might be received from the remote host (in TCP terms, the remote host sent an RST packet). This error is also possible on a datagram socket; for instance, this error could result if your application sends a UDP datagram to a host, which rejects it by responding with an ICMP Port Unreachable.

User Action:

In most cases you should be able to just re-open the Remote Lab connection using the .RDP file you downloaded from my.ischool.syr.edu. If this continuously happens, please make sure you have the latest version of the Microsoft Remote Desktop client available for your operating system.

Windows: Check for updates for your version of Windows

Mac OSX: Check for Mac OSX software updates


About RemoteLab

The RemoteLab platform is a technology which allows you easily create and manage virtual labs. Our definition of virtual lab is that users can connect to the desktop of a lab computer from anywhere without the requirement of being in a specific physical place. The underlying technology which makes Remote Lab "virtual" is the Windows Remote Desktop protocol. Fundamentally, it is just a system consisting of a website, database, and some scripts to manage the complexities associated with a group of Remote Desktop enabled workstations.

Syracuse University's iSchool has released RemoteLab as opensource. You can find out more here: http://mafudge.github.io/remotelab/

Source Code available through github: https://github.com/mafudge/remotelab

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