Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

One common problem connecting with Remote Assistance typically involves a router 'getting in the way'.

I get the message: 'Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved.' - What does that mean?

Essentially it just means that remote assistance didn't get a response from the target computer. The most likely cause in home scenarios is that there's a router in the way at the remote site. For Remote assistance to work, port 3389 must be forwarded on that router to the target computer's internal IP address.

Article C2027 - June 12, 2004 « »

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Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

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69 Comments
Jim
July 25, 2004 12:46 PM

How do I do this? "For Remote assistance to work, port 3389 must be forwarded on that router to the target computer's internal IP address."

Thanks!!!!!

JIm
July 25, 2004 12:47 PM

Same question - used wrong email address last time.

How do I do this per above: "For Remote assistance to work, port 3389 must be forwarded on that router to the target computer's internal IP address."

Thanks!!!

Leo
July 25, 2004 1:36 PM

That depends entirely on the router or firewall you're using. You'll have to check the documentation for that.

Matthew Lind
September 1, 2004 5:34 PM

Can use use dos commands to tell router port 3389 must be forwarded?

Leo
September 1, 2004 7:39 PM

No. Since exactly how varies from router to router, you'll need to use whatever interface your router has to tell it to do that.

kevin
September 22, 2004 8:13 PM

which ip, my friend's or my own, do i forward the port to?

Siobhan
September 24, 2004 2:23 PM

how do i get msn messenger for windows xo because i downloaded it and it wont let me sign in! help me please! i have got windows messenger but i REALLY want msn!

renee
October 27, 2004 6:43 PM

i get this message

"Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved. Please try again."

and i read up there that "For Remote assistance to work, port 3389 must be forwarded on that router to the target computer's internal IP address."

and you replied with something about documentaion, and i have no idea, i neeeeeed help

sandy
October 28, 2004 8:24 PM

can you install remote assistance on windowsME

Leo
October 29, 2004 7:39 PM

If you mean Windows XP remote assistance, no, it's not available for Windows ME. The closest alternative would be a remote access program such as pcAnywhere.

Chris
February 15, 2005 3:27 AM

There is a second cause of this problem. If the person initiating the Remote Assistance request has set up a network or is sitting behind a firewall or router then the requst that is sent will contain the internal IP address and not the (correct) external IP address.

The easiste way to correct this problem is to send the request as an email - then the person receiving the request can open the request attachment in notepad and manually change the internal IP for the external IP.
e.g. client on small home network uising IP address of 192.168.0.1
ADSL (internet) address is 123.456.789.45

Remote assistance will send the request containing 192.168.0.1 - the receipient must change this in notepad to 123.456.789.45

Port 3389 must still be open at both ends (if you are using a firewall) in order for the RA to work.

Hope this helps.

Chris

NachoB
February 23, 2005 8:29 AM

Was having same issue myself but never did find an answer that worked. But after anylizing the RA file via notepad I discovered the fix. The one piece of information missing, that you will need to first obtain from the person you're trying to establish a connection to, is what their Default Gateway is. If you don't know how to get this information from them, they can do this by going to a command prompt and typing "ipconfig" (without the quotes). Of course, this is altogether different if they are behind a router which I won't get into here. Once you have the IP of the default gateway, open up (if you haven't done so already) the remote assistance file using notepad. The data I'm pasting here is ficticious so just bear with me. The start of the second line should look something similar to: RCTICKET="65538,1,127.0.0.1:3389;host_name:3389,*,. 127.0.0.1 is the IP of the machine obviously, and where I typed host_name is the name of their machine. Behind host_name you need to add the default gateway they are on. i.e. host_name.127.0.0.2:3389. Again, 127.0.0.2 is not valid, just used as an example. Use whatever they told you their default gateway is. Once you've added that click save and everything should be peas & carrots :-). Hope this works for you, it worked for me.

John
April 15, 2005 9:05 AM

if you just go to your firewall settings on your pc, and make sure it has remote assistance allowed to pass, you should be in business. Thats the first thing I would check. Part of being behind a Firewall is NAT, which hides your internal IP. Basically, your firewall attaches a port to it, so all these requests for pages etc, go to the right PC. Everyone uses the same 1 (or however many public IP's you have) and the firewall knows by its attached port number who's PC requested that info. So to simplify, just ensure your firewalls are correctly set to allow remote assistance, and you should be in business.

Arun
July 18, 2005 8:25 AM

i get this message

"Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved. Please try again."

the above problem how to solve??????

Waiting for your answer

hi
September 17, 2005 3:11 PM

can u tell me where is the Remote Assitance file located from where i can change the default gateway...thanks

Leo
September 17, 2005 3:19 PM

I don't understand the question. I'm not sure what you're referring to as "the remote assistance file", or what file might contain a "default gateway" in this scenario. Can you explain what you're attempting to do?

Andy
September 26, 2005 2:48 PM

I'm having the same problem.

I'm trying to hook up to my Dad's PC. When we use MSN it just crashes his machine.I had him save the remote connection invite as a file and email it across. When I double-click on this it tries to connect and then comes up with the same error as the original post. I've opened the port on my router. My Dad hasn't got a router and I had him turn his forewall off temporarily just in case.

One thing that does seem stramge is that when I try a tracert to his IP (I had him check that his PC IP was a non-NAT one) I hit some sort of wall - lots of "Request timed out" halfway through the trace.

This seems a bit odd - a transparent proxy on his ISP maybe? He's on BT (we're in the UK) btw.

J Wooden
October 12, 2005 8:12 AM

I think the problem here is that the IP address in the "ticket" is the private IP address that DHCP on the router hands out - typically 192.168.xx.yy

What the ticket needs is the IP address of the WAN side of the router (that is the IP address that the modem owns) as the 192.168.xx.yy address is no good on the internet.

If the ticket had the modem's IP it would at least get to the correct "house". Now in addition since this RA is not in "response" to a existing conversation the routher will not know which computer to which to route the incomming RA.

If there is only one computer on the router this might not be a problem, but I think you will in addition have to turn on "port forwarding" on the router to "forward" port 3389 to the 192.168.xx.yy address. After which it will work -- at least it works at my house ;-)

Your mileage may vary with your brand of router.

One issue is that it is not that easy to get the IP address of your modem. The router knows what it is so if go to the router config. summary page you can find it. I have an IE shortcut set up to the right page of the router config. on my desktop so that I can get the IP with less work.

Hope that makes sense, I'm short on time here....

J

joshleafe
October 27, 2005 12:22 PM

hi, having the same problem ,what do i do??? also when i select remote assistance form the start menu it says, a program could not start. please try again?????
cheers
josh

Kees
October 27, 2005 2:10 PM

It's quite simple to get your modem/router ip adres just go to:
http://www.whatismyip.com :=)

Andy
November 15, 2005 11:36 AM

Several people have mentioned that its a router problem. As I stated in my original message a couple of posts ago I tried without routers and with firewalls disabled with the same problem. This may be the problem in a lot of cases, but suggesting that you open ports/edit the IP does not always fix it.

stylin19
November 27, 2005 9:53 PM

I also received "...a program could not start".
my workaround is: to select: "save as a file" and then send the saved file to the "invitee" as an attachment.

vfree727
November 30, 2005 7:20 PM

'Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved.' - What does that mean?":

I got the above message tonite.I asked the person who was requesting help from me to turn her firewall off and it was resolved. I was able to access her computer.

Mike
December 22, 2005 1:17 PM

1. Make sure Remote Assistance is enabled.
Start Menu->Control Panel->System->Remote (Tab)->Click on Remote Assistance
2. Make sure the Windows XP Firewall is not blocking it.
Start Menu->Control Panel->Windows Firewall->Make sure "Don't Allow Exceptions" is unchecked

Errors:

1. Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved. Please try again.
a. Verify Port 3389 is unblocked on the following locations: (if in use)
The router,
the dsl modem,
the cable modem,
the server,
the local machine (Windows or third party firewalls),
and/or any third party firewall software (ie Norton Firewall or McAffee Firewall).


Remember, this must be done for both machines.

john
December 25, 2005 10:15 PM

hi,

how to unblock the port 3389?
thanks


john

Leo
December 26, 2005 8:27 PM

Depends entirely on the router involved. Usually there's a web interface. Check the documentation for the router.

Matt
December 27, 2005 7:36 AM

If anyone is getting the "a program could not start. please try again" message, it is because you have some services disabled on your system. You will need Administrator rights to do this.

* Go to Start > Run and type in 'services.msc' and press OK
* Scroll down to the service called "Remote Access Auto Connection Manager"
* Look in the 'Startup Type' to see if it says 'Disabled'. If it does then right-click and go to 'Properties'
* In the drop-down box next to 'Startup type' select 'automatic'. Click OK and you will be returned to the services screen
* Do the same for "Remote Access Connection Manager" and "Remote Desktop Help Session Manager"
* Retry the Remote Assistance wizard and all should not be working again.

Bob
December 30, 2005 7:38 AM

You may have two options. 1. Make sure she has the port 3389 open and you may need to modify the IP address for the invitation from private IP or public IP.

2. You both must be on-line using MSN messenger.

This link may help.

How to fix the error "Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved"? ...
http://www.chicagotech.net/rdesktop.htm

LYS
February 21, 2006 10:01 PM

my goodness.... someone needs help with his/her computer and first i need to teach him/her how to unblock port 3389... doesn't that defeat the purpose somehow?

Leo
February 21, 2006 10:12 PM

On the contrary - it serves the purpose quite well. That person is protected from random people attempting to connect with remote desktop until you have things squared away.

roy johns
March 12, 2006 11:00 AM

msxm13.dll-2147012867.connection with sever could not be establlshed pleas can someone tell me what it means

Alex
April 28, 2006 8:41 AM

when i send my friend an invite to start using remote assistance, nothing comes up. how do i fix this. Please help, email me.

Don Purinton
May 8, 2006 10:23 PM

Where do you find the invitation file in order to edit it with notepad?

John
May 9, 2006 6:39 PM

I get the message: 'Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved"
My dad and I both have cable modems-no router (I think) I have an airport extreme wireless base station and my dad is direct to cable modem. I am trying to run his but get that message. Please be basic- I am no computer expert. We both have MSN 7.5. I have XP Pro he has XP Media

Sage
May 23, 2006 4:19 PM

Check http://www.portforward.com for instructions on how to forward the ports for your router brand/model. Common firewall issues addressed too.

Atle Dale
June 6, 2006 5:26 AM

This is not so simple. I get this message when I try to connect INSIDE a LAN.

Renan
July 6, 2006 8:18 PM

Hey men! I would like to know how to use MSN Remote Assistance.

Thanks.

HEC
July 7, 2006 7:09 PM

I am not able to connect to my fathers comp at his house. I change the settings on the port to 3389 and am still having a problem. perhaps someone might have a suggestion.

Mike Hardin
July 28, 2006 4:41 PM

I have forwarded port 3389 to the target PC, but I still get the message: "Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved." The only firewall other than my router is the built in Windows firewall, and Remote Assistance is allowed by the firewall. Remote Assistance is turned on on the remote tab of my computer. Any other ideas?

Andrew
August 12, 2006 9:48 AM

hi sorry to bother you but i recently installed this program from rosetta stone language learning and right when i have everything done this thing pops up and say the progam cannot be establishedbecause of the remote host or something like that, is their anything i can do to fix my problem?

Leo A. Notenboom
August 12, 2006 12:08 PM

Sorry, but I need the exact error message to even hazard a guess. "Something like that" isn't enough to go on. :-(

Belynda
August 30, 2006 1:21 AM

Hi. I have a problem connecting remote assistance outside of my network. If I connect from inside to inside it is fine but inside from outside has a problem. It tells me that the public keys don't match. I have opened port 3389.Any ideas?

Seb
November 12, 2006 6:14 AM

I cannot connect using Remote Assistance either, but I get a different message "Remote Assistance failed, please try again."

Obviously when I try again I still get nothing. I connect to the internet using a Modem (yes, wires. NOT wireless.)

Mike
December 31, 2006 12:43 AM

hey i have a problem using the remote assistant..... i send the invitation...my partner accepts.....but then nothing else happens. What should i do?

Samuel
February 7, 2007 7:08 PM

my question on this issue is in the "RAInvitation.msrincident" file that you send to the person by email to connect your computers through Remote Assistance, there is a 'HOST NAME' which you have to input. Let's say your host name or computer name is: MYPC, but because you have an internal network with a domain controller, your computer name is: MYPC.yourdomainname so my question is what host name do you use in order for RA to work, do you use the regular computer name or the fully qualified computer name includind the internet domain name (the domain is not public but just a private domain with not connection to the ousife world). Also if you use 3 or 4 computers in your internal network, who do you tell RA to specfically use one of the 192.168.xx.yy computers you have in your network.
Thanks very much in adavance for any assistance.!!

Anand Gounder
February 14, 2007 7:45 AM

I couldn't get the remote assistance to work. I tried everything. I still getting "Remote Assistance connection could not be established, please try again" error message.

Rita
February 22, 2007 8:58 AM

I have been getting this same message "Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved." What exactly does that mean?:
One night me and a friend was working this for hours and tried many things but nothing worked. I even tried the port exception to 3389 from mt windows firewall. I think its my router but i am not sure how to fix the issue. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Jim
March 5, 2007 3:42 PM

Rita, you might try removing the router from the equation, if able, and see what happens. Makes it easier to troubleshoot if you find out for sure the router is the culprit.

Damon
April 17, 2007 8:14 PM

I've watched Ethereal when I'm getting this error (I can telnet to the remote address on port 3389 and get a connection -- firewalls are not the issue). I believe the error lies with this:

Whenever I open the file to connect, I put in the password and ask it to connect. Two things happen at this point: RA appears to query for two DNS entries: one for time.windows.com and one for _LDAP._TCP. When the _LDAP._TCP query is returned with a failed response, the connection attempt terminates. At no point is an attempt made to connect to the remote IP address on port 3389.

Paul
June 30, 2007 4:29 AM

Whenever connected to the net using a router and having openned port 3389 in it, the problem is that the IP address inside the "RAInvitation.msrincident" file corresponds to the internal one. If we open this file with any text editor, there is a line that looks like: "RCTICKET="65538,1,192.168.1.2:3389;". You can note that the IP addres is the internal one (192.168.X.X), not the public one. Therefore, in order to make it work, we need to change the IP address by the public one. To get the public address we can check the router or use for example this link: http://www.whatismyipaddress.com/. I have not found any other way to solve the problem (still searching around the net), and I must admit that this is kind of a dirty trick, which I don't like much. Imagine you want to help someone who doesn't know much about informatics. Don't ask him/her to do all those steps!

lasombra
July 23, 2007 2:34 AM

This don't work, cause if I change the IP address the assistant don't ask me more for a password. I get an error message "There is a problem with the invitation and it cannot be opened." I the ip is protected by hashing the ip address.

Steve
August 7, 2007 9:14 PM

OK, this is simple. I'll make this as easy as I can to understand.

1) Open port 3389 on both the firewalls for each user. If there is only 1 firewall on one end and not on the other, then you only have to open the one firewall up.

2) The file that is created for the session invite needs to be edited in 2 ways.

RCTICKET="65538,1,192.168.1.1:3389;host_name:3389

This line needs to be changed in 2 spots:

RCTICKET="65538,1,66.66.66.66:3389;host_name.172.16.1.10:3389

You need to change the internal IP address to the external address, i.e. LAN Address to the WAN address, and you need to ADD the user default gateway to the end of the host_name. So, they should be changed like this:

RCTICKET="65538,1,192.168.1.1:3389;host_name:3389

to

RCTICKET="65538,1,66.245.112.159:3389;sandi.172.16.1.10:3389

I can't make it any more simply than that. Hope that helps you all.

gowrisanakr.s
September 25, 2007 9:34 PM

I have been getting this same message "Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved." What exactly does that mean?:
One night me and a friend was working this for hours and tried many things but nothing worked. I even tried the port exception to 3389 from mt windows firewall. I think its my router but i am not sure how to fix the issue. Does anyone have any suggestions?

raju
September 25, 2007 9:47 PM

hai
this is raju.i want to work with the remote assistance.if my self or my friend access the invitation. we are get the same error. that is "remote assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved.please try again". both systems are work station (XP). no firewall.my ip id 192.168.x.x and the another end is 172.16.x.x. internet is working properly in both side.please answer me.

raju
September 28, 2007 1:07 AM


I try to open Domain security policy and Domain controller security policy in my windows 2003 server both are give the same error Failed to open the group policy object. “You may not have appropriate rights. The specified domain either does not exist or could not be contacted.” .but the gpedit Is open.

raju.s
October 5, 2007 11:41 PM

I try to open Domain security policy and Domain controller security policy in my windows 2003 server both are give the same error Failed to open the group policy object. “You may not have appropriate rights. The specified domain either does not exist or could not be contacted.” .but the gpedit Is open.

joe
December 31, 2007 1:50 PM

i get the message "Remote Assistance connection could not be established because the remote host name could not be resolved. What can i do to fix problem!! please HELP

Joe Marty
January 9, 2008 6:47 AM

This page has good explanations for most of the ways Remote Assistance can go wrong (including port forwarding with NAT, connecting behind firewalls, through routers, etc), and solutions: http://www.petri.co.il/what's_remote_assistanc.htm

Barry
March 30, 2008 3:09 AM

I have followed the information given by Steve in August 07. It did not work, posibly because I am using Vista as is the remote computer. Does anybody know how the format of the invitation Ticket varies between XP and Vista?

your mom
August 1, 2008 9:12 PM

remote desktop requires 3389 to be open, remote assistance works through upnp...idiots...

Robert
September 18, 2008 1:27 PM

Leo,

I am attempting Remote Assistance thru Windows Live Messenger - it's a simplified version of XP's method. The message I get is very similar:

DNS Name of the remote computer could not be established

Since all the transacting between PCs and the server happens in the background - how would I resolve this and make a successful connection?

I do have a router - but I've connected with one person with no problem - and then not with another.

Joe
December 9, 2008 9:39 AM

You need to make sure you are using you're REAL IP Address, not the one assigned to you by you're router. Go to Whatismyip.com to get your real IP address, then try again. If the IP starts with 192 or 172, then thats is the router assigned IP and it will not work.

claytonpaul
January 2, 2009 5:40 PM

Finally...all day working on this....but i finally figured it out..i think. While i've gone thru every other step listed on every website and forum out on the web...the trick that finally made this work for me was to ENABLE "TERMINAL SERVICES."


from a command prompt: services.msc
Under "SERVICES" find TERMINAL SERVICES, rt click it, properties and then choose STARTUP TYPE as AUTOMATIC and then START the service...this finally did it for me...hope this helps!! cpb

autoken
May 11, 2009 9:43 AM

Use TeamViewer instead.
This neat little software beats Remote Assistance hands down !!!

mike
May 16, 2009 10:23 AM

The accepting computer has to allow remote access, under control panel, system, remote. Hope this helps. Also, if using vista, you can access an xp installed computer, but not the other way around.

rajesh
September 7, 2009 3:05 AM

On my NAT connection sharing my client is not able to configure Remote Assistance connection .error is that Remote Assistance connection could not be established. try again

seo
February 18, 2011 4:58 PM

The accepting computer has to allow remote access, under control panel, system, remote. Hope this helps. Also, if using vista, you can access an xp installed computer, but not the other way around.

RIno Manarin
February 28, 2011 8:07 PM

I dom't have the solutuion I am just looking at the resolves. But they seem to be conoluted I am looking for a simple answer for my inlaws.

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