Remove DVD drive on Azure virtual machine

When you deploy a new virtual machine, for example Windows Server 2016/2019 or 2022, you’ll get the C: drive with the operating system, the D: drive for the TEMP storage (most of the VM types) and a DVD drive.

The DVD drive is not needed in some situations, for example on domain controllers. This type of servers you want to harden the security as much as possible. So, for domain controllers we’re deploying in our customer environments, we want to disable the DVD drive.

We run the following command when deploying new domain controllers in Azure.

## Disable DVD drive
Set-ItemProperty -Path HKLM:\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\cdrom -Name Start -Value 4 -Type DWord

After this step, reboot the server and your DVD drive is gone!

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Restricting RDP access to Azure virtual machines

By default, every VM you’v e created within Azure has RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) on port 3389 enabled. You can access you VM from anywhere in the world.

You can restrict RDP access on just that IP addresses you want, so you can limit the access. So for example, you can limit your company IP address and maybe you home address to access the specific VM in Azure.

To restrict access, I’ve created a NSG (Network Seciruty Group) with the following configuration:

1.) Create a new Inbound security rule with a priority of 4095 (every digit below the default of 65000 is fine!!)
2.) Configure the following rule:

Priority: 4096
Name: Deny-RDP-Access
Source: Service Tag
Source service tag: Internet
Source port ranges: *
Destination: VirtualNetwork
Destination port ranges: 3389
Protocol: TCP
Action: Deny

3.) Configure a second rule:

Priority: 4095
Name: Allow-RDP-Access
Source: IP Addressess
Source IP Addressess/CIDR ranges: YOUR IP ADDRESSESS
Source port ranges: *
Destination: Any
Destination port ranges: 3389
Protocol: TCP
Action: Allow

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Now you can test your new configuration. RDP access is only allowed from your custom IP addressess!!

Experts Live NL 2018 Intro Movie

Last Tuesday, it was a great day again! Experts Live 2018 NL. The biggest community event in the Netherlands. Great sessions, great speakers, very high level of content, great demos and off course as always a great intro movie!! 🙂 Many thanks to the organization of Experts Live! See you next year!!

http://www.expertslive.nl