"Navigate in any webbrowser to https://yourcompany.westeurope.cloudapp.azure.com and logon with your corporate Active Directory account (including 2-FA) to access your Windows desktops"
If you want your users to be able to access for example Windows PCs or Windows RDS, which are located on your corporate network from anywhere in the world using any HTML5 capable webbrowser, then this is right for.
If your are a homelab enthusiast and want your homelab to be accessible from any where from any device using HTML5, then this maybe worth to have a look.
This repo runs a bunch of docker containers on any Linux operating system to make this possible.
inlets is used as a reverse tunneling solution using Websockets, which connects to a minimal cloud-hosted VM leveraging its public IP address and full qualified domain name.
Apache Guacamole is a clientless remote desktop gateway, which supports protocols like RDP, VNC and SSH. Because the Guacamole client is an HTML5 web application, use of your computers is not tied to any one device or location. As long as you have access to a web browser, you have access to your machines.
This repo automates the whole configuration and integration of inlets and Apache Guacamole. By setting a few mandatory environment variables, user authentication can be integrated into Active Directory using LDAP. Also 2-FA-Authentication is enabled using Google-Authenticator or any compatible TOTP implementation.
If you are not afraid of Linux, Docker and a bunch of Opensource Tools, then you are there in a few minutes.
Ideally you have a vanilla or an existing Ubuntu server on your corporate network.
The repo contains a Vagrantfile, so you also can easily use
vagrant up to test the solution in a local VM using Virtualbox and Vagrant.
To spin up the Gacamole inlets exit-node in Azure you need a Azure Subcription.
Pro-Tip: Maybe you have spotted the Vagrantfile. This means, for testing purpose you can use
vagrant up to spin up an Ubuntu Linux immediately, if you are a little bit familiar with Vagrant and VirtualBox and have already installed it somewhere. If you do so then you can already skip
Step 1, because Vagrant has done it already for you.
Run the install.sh script as root on your Ubuntu server.
This script automatically installs docker, docker-compose, git, terraform, Azure CLI and inlets. It also clones this repo into the directoy
/srv/workfromhome-with-inlets on your server.
sudo -s curl -sfL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/andif888/workfromhome-with-inlets/master/install.sh | sh -
Spin up the Gacamole inlets exit-node in Azure.
For details please see Guacamole inlets Exit-Node on Azure in the inlets-exit-node subdirectory. These are very quick step, because the deployment is fully unattended.
Edit the .env file and customize at least the values of the mandatory environment variables with your preferred text editor. All mandatory an optional setting are documented inside the .env file.
cd /srv/workfromhome-with-inlets nano .env
Start docker container using the start.sh script as root.
sudo -s ./start.sh
Point your preferred webbrowser to the DNS host name, which you have configured as
FQDN_HOST_NAME in your .env file.
The default username is
guacadmin and password is
After entering credentials your prompted to scan the QR-Code, with a compatible TOTP App on your mobile phone.
Google Authenticator works good.
After scanning the QR-Code and entering the first token your are successfully logged into Apache Guacamole.
Please change the default password immediatelly.
Settings in the top right menu.
Connections and the
Enter any Name. It's only a display name.
RDP as Protocol.
Scroll down to
Parameters and enter the RDP connection details.
Optionally fine-tune for latest RDP-Protocol version.
And finally hit
Save at the bottom of the page.
Go back to
And start the connection
and have fun! HTML5 based RDP into your Windows machine.
General Help on How to configure connections in Guacamole
Make sure you have entered correct mandatory values regarding LDAP authentication into the .env file in Step 2 during initial configuration.
NOTE: We don't use the AD Schema preparation, documented at https://guacamole.apache.org/doc/gug/ldap-auth.html, because we don't like to do changes in our Acitive Directory Schema. Please read the documention to understand the mapping between database users und AD users.
Create a new user in Guacamole and set its username to the username of an existing AD user, which is located in your AD-Tree below the OU (Organizational Unit), which you have configured in
LDAP_USER_BASE_DN environment variable.
If you haven't changed
LDAP_USERNAME_ATTRIBUTE then the mapped username of your AD user is the
Your can set any password. It must not match your AD user's password.
Make sure you check all permissions and hit
Save at the bottom of the page.
Now you should be able to logon with the AD user account.
Because of we have previously set the permission
Change own password, we are prompted with the already familiar 2-FA screen. Again use your Google Authenticator to scan the QR-Code.
If you now navigate to
Settings -> Users you should get already a list of your AD user accounts, which means, your LDAP integration and authentication is working perfect.
If you want to enable 2-FA for AD user then you minimum need to assign the permission
Change own password on his user account.
Don't be afraid of the setting, it doesn't mean a user can change its AD password using this web GUI. It's only about changing its personal credential information in Guacamole's MySQL database, which is necessary to write down the TOTP secret key.
You have already learned to create your first connection to a Windows machine further above.
There is a nice feature which allows you to pass-through your Guacamole logon credentials to a connection.
You remember when you have scrolled down to
Parameters and entered the RDP connection details?
To enable Pass-Through credentials you do not hardcode username and password. You only need to enter parameter tokens.
For the username you enter
For the password you enter
If you use the
userPrincipalName for your AD users all is perfect and no need to worry about the Domain field ;-)
To learn more about parameter tokens
Viewing inlets Logs
cd /srv/workfromhome-with-inlets docker logs inlets-client
Viewing Guacamole Logs
cd /srv/workfromhome-with-inlets docker-compose logs -f --tail=1000 guacamole
Viewing all Logs
cd /srv/workfromhome-with-inlets docker-compose logs -f --tail=1000
Use at your own risk.
This is not a solution which scales for thousands of users.
Depending on your internet connection this is perfectly fine for 50+ users with a single Ubuntu machine.