AWS Windows Instance Set Up Step 3: Connecting to an AWS Windows Instance

This video is part 3 in a series of 5 videos that show how to set up a Windows virtual machine (instance) using Amazon Web Services and then provision it with Python and R (and some additional software) so that it can serve as a platform for doing some data science. In this video I show how to connect to an Windows instance at AWS from a Windows compute using Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection.

Note: Microsoft Remote Desktop Connections clients exist for most operating systems including for Mac, iPad, and Linux. If you are not using a Windows computer to connect to the instance, after watching this video, you should be able to set up a client for you own computer without much trouble. Important for Mac OS X users: Use the Remote Desktop App that you can obtain from the Apple App Store.

The video is about 17 minutes long.

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Changes/Corrections

Starting at time 14:06 in the video, I explain how to move from the Start Screen to the screen that lists all of the Apps. This has changed in more recent versions of Windows 8. Now, at the bottom of the Start Screen on the left-hand side is a small white arrow in a white circle that takes you to the page of all the Apps. This is much more intuitive and easier than the right-clicking approach discussed in the video. Click here to see an image of the updated Start Page.

Video Index

Click on the topics below to jump to that location in the video.

Time Topic
00:00Title Slide
00:03Introduction
00:23EC2 Table of Instances
01:02Navigate to the EC2 Instance Table
02:08Review Information Saved in the Instance Folder
04:28Select Instance in the EC2 Instance Table
04:38The “Connect” Button
04:41The “Connect to Your Instance” Dialog
04:46The “Download Remote Desktop File” Button
05:19The Remote Desktop File default name is the IP number
06:04The “Get Password” Button
06:25Input the Key Pair Information from the .pem file
07:03The Private Key
07:22Decrypting the password
07:34Save the password in the Instance Data Excel file
08:03Close the “Connect to Your Instance” dialog
08:18Run the .rdp file for the instance
08:39Ignore the warning
08:48Login name and password
09:24Ignore the certificate warning and click “Yes”
09:37Instance Windows 8 Start Screen
10:24Return to the local computer
10:35Reduce the Remote Desktop Protocol from fullscreen to a Window
10:53Minimize the Remote Desktop Connect to the local computer taskbar
11:05Return to the AWS Windows Instance
11:29Move the Remote Desktop Protocol top bar around
11:38Windows 8 Start Screen
11:46In Windows 8, the Start Screen replaces the Start Menu
11:47Windows 8 Programs List
12:11Brief Introduction to Windows 8
12:21Moving between the Start Screen and the Desktop
12:07Programs are now called “Apps”
12:28Moving to the Desktop using the Desktop Tile on the Start Screen
12:36Using the Windows Key
13:02Move to the Windows 8 Start Screen using the Windows Key
13:15Move back to the Desktop using the Windows Key
13:21Move back to the Windows 8 Start Screen
13:25Expose the Charms (including the Settings)
13:41Show the Settings Menu including the Power Button
14:00Hide the Setting Menu
14:06Showing the “All Apps” Page
15:13Return to the Start Screen from the All Apps page using the Windows Key
15:19Determine the disk size and available disk space.
15:39Switch to the Desktop
15:41Open File Explorer
15:46Switch to the Computer folder
15:53Disk C size and space available
16:02Conclusion

Next Video: Step 4 — Provisioning the Instance

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