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I am building a laptop with Windows 7 SP1 x64 which will be used by a remote user. The laptop needs to be locked down so they can only do their work and nothing else. It will have a VPN connection created in Windows which will connect them into the domain.

Is it possible to automatically connect to the VPN as Windows is loading (before the logon screen)? Ideally I'd like it to connect to the VPN before it attempts to load Group Policy so that as soon as it does connect, Group Policy is then processed.

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Yes.

You need to make sure the VPN connection has been created first, and make it possible for all users to use the connection. You do not need to store the credentials.

Now, once the computer is connected to a domain, an additional icon will appear on the login screen on the bottom right which will allow anyone to login using a VPN connection.

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  • OK, so by using the option I take it that would ask them for their domain credentials and use them to establish the VPN connection, then login to Windows? – Reado Jul 15 '14 at 10:28
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    Exactly. Its common practice actually. – LPChip Jul 15 '14 at 11:31
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At login Network logon button will appear in the lower right corner next to the power button. Click this button and you will be presented with buttons for available network connections. Click on the button for your VPN. Enter your Username and Password, and click the arrow button (or press Enter). You will need three files available from Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools, the download is available from Microsoft (http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=17657). Run the executable to unpack and install the tools.

  1. Put the commandrasdial connection-name username password into a batch file and name it autoexnt.bat.
  2. In the directory created by the Resource Kit Tools installer, locate autoexnt.exe, instexnt.exe, and servmess.dll. Move those files and autoexnt.bat to %SystemRoot%\SysWOW64\

  3. From a command prompt, run instexnt.exe install to install the service.

You’re done when the machine boots, it will automatically establish the given VPN connection.

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