Microsoft RRAS is an important component of Windows Server providing you with a number of functions such as dial-in-service and creating virtual private networks (VPNs). Routing and Remote Access Service (RRAS) is a network service in Windows Server (2000, 2003, and 2008) which allows an administrator to configure dial-up remote access servers, NAT, IP routing and VPN servers. Nowadays, the use of Virtual Private Network or VPN has become quite common exploiting the power of the internet and directing IP connections which are made accessible from clients to a VPN server. Figure 1 demonstrates the VPN connection. In comparison to dial-up connections through modems which connect the internet, most high-speed connections such as cable, DSL and fiber optic are generally preferred.

Defining RRAS 2


How to enable RRAS in Windows Server

Below are the steps to enable RRAS in Windows Server

  1. Go to your Windows Server.  We will be enabling RRAS using a Windows Server 2008 .
  2. Create a new MMC by going to Start > Run and typing MMC.
  3. Add the Routing and Remote Access snap-in:
    • Click File > Add/Remove Snap-in.
    • Scroll down and click Routing and Remote Access.
    • Click Add.
    • Click OK. If you wish, you can add the Server Manager to your MMC as well so that you have most of the tools you will need in one window. At this point, RRAS is not configured or running. Your MMC should look similar to Figure 2.

      Defining RRAS 3

      Figure 2 MMC with RRAS and Server Manager snap-ins added

  4. Right-click Routing and Remote Access, and select Add Server.
  5. In the Add Server window, leave the default as This computer and click OK. This adds the server to the RRAS list in the MMC.
  6. Right click the server name and select Configure and Enable Routing and Remote Access.
  7. Click Next for the welcome window. The welcome window is where you can select whether you want to have remote access, a VPN, or set up the server as a router. In this exercise, we will make a basic router.
  8. Select the Custom configuration radio button and click Next.
  9. Select the LAN routing check box and click Next.
  10. Click Finish for the summary screen. Now RRAS is configured and can be modified further depending on what network adapters and IP addresses the server has. By enabling LAN routing, the concept known as IP forwarding has been turned on, but only if the server has two or more network adapters. IP forwarding bridges the gap between the two network adapters even if they are on two different IP networks.
  11.  Be sure to save the MMC for use later on. You might also want to disable RRAS in case you will be using other services that might conflict with it in the future. To do this, just right click the server in the MMC and select Disable