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  • Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

    Hi Everybody,

    I work for a large organisation (3000+ desktops) that has a large number of users working at the end of IPStream VPN links.

    Since upgrading all of these to XP recently we have had issues with the XP machines being very slow to boot. We know that the cause is XP seeing a network link that it cannot use, and I assume it is waiting to time out, but we are struggling to think of a way around it.

    At the moment, the only 'bodge' is to remove the network cable until the machine has reached the login screen.

    Has anybody got any suggestions that may be helpful please?

    Many thanks for your time,

    Mark.

  • #2
    Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

    Did you say upgrading TO XP -- it is an 8 year old OS. What on earth were they previously?
    Or do you mean a SP upgrade, if so which one?
    Tom Jones
    MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
    PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
    IT Trainer / Consultant
    Ossian Ltd
    Scotland

    ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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    • #3
      Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

      Unfortunately I do mean to Windows XP. We completed the upgrades around March this year where around half of our estate was still running Windows 2000.

      The only real push for the upgrade was from central government who insisted XP as a minimum requirement to comply with new secure data regulations.

      The wheels of British local government turn very slowly.

      Vista, for obvious reasons, was passed by as an alternative upgrade OS but even now the resistance against even doing R&D in to a Windows 7 migration is very great. I suspect XP will still be here for a long time.

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      • #4
        Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

        how do you mean, seeing a link it cannot use ?

        Do your event logs have any info ?
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        • #5
          Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

          Sorry, I didn't explain that too well.

          The remote computers use a secure VPN client to connect over the IPStream to our network. Until the software is started and authenticated (at login) there is no tunnel.

          It would appear that whilst starting up, Windows can see a network connection but this only goes as far as the local router and obviously can see no servers or services. It seems to wait in case it can get a connection.

          If you remove the network cable, Windows cannot see a network connection and boots quickly, I assume bypassing the startup scripts.

          I will go and see if I can get access to one and retrieve the errors from the event log as I can't remember them specifically at the moment.

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          • #6
            Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

            Ok, these are the events that appear in the Application Event Log when there is no network connection.

            Error - Event ID 1054 - Source Userenv

            Windows cannot obtain the domain controller name for your computer network. (The specified domain either does not
            exist or could not be contacted. ). Group Policy processing aborted.

            Error - Event ID 1000 - Source Userinit

            Could not execute the following script [path here]. The network location cannot be reached. For information about network troubleshooting, see Windows Help.

            (Five of these errors, one for each of our scripts)

            Error - Event ID 15 - Source AutoEnrollment

            Automatic certificate enrollment for local system failed to contact the active directory (0x8007054b). The
            specified domain either does not exist or could not be contacted.
            Enrollment will not be performed.
            I have tested and these errors come up whether plugged in to the VPN connection or with no network cable at all. The only difference is with the VPN connection attached the time to login screen will be several minutes.

            With the cable plugged in the boot to login screen time is less than a minute.

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            • #7
              Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

              I'd strongly recommend a DC at this office, since you can see that the errors are caused by the computers not being able to talk to one. Alternatively, set up a VPN tunnel between this site and the site with the servers. In any case, take the VPN responsibility away from the workstations.
              Gareth Howells

              BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

              Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

              Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

              "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

              "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

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              • #8
                Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

                It's not a site, it's single users working from their homes. We have probably close to 100 single users who work in this way but also need to be able to come in to an office and log on to the domain/DC from there too.

                Their setup is PC > Router > IPStream > Corporate LAN.

                I have now found a GP setting that appears to limit the time that the PC waits for GP scripts but I need to do some testing to see if this will help the situation or not.

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                • #9
                  Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

                  Ok. Do you provide their broadband at home? If so, configure their broadband routers to establish the VPN link.
                  Gareth Howells

                  BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

                  Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

                  Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

                  "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

                  "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

                    Additionally, check that the firewall is not causing you issues.

                    Next, open My Computer, Tools>Folder Options and remove the checkmark next to 'Automatically search for network folders and printers'

                    See if that helps.
                    A recent poll suggests that 6 out of 7 dwarfs are not happy

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                    • #11
                      Re: Slow bootup for Windows XP on VPN links

                      We currently do provide the IPStream connection yes, although we are moving to a solution of using a secure encryption client over users own home broadband lines where we have no control over their routers. Obviously we get the same problem on this setup.

                      Blood - thank you I will try that as well and see what effect it has.

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