Quick Tip: Download the latest Windows 10 ISO file

Today on May 18, 2021, Windows 10 21H1 is released (May 2021 Update). This 21H1 version is a minor release version and the 21H2 version (later this year) will be a major release version. I use the latest Windows 10 versions in my lab environment for creating and testing golden images for VDI environments.

To download the latest Windows 10 ISO file I use the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool. This is a Windows-based tool. When starting the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool it opens a Graphical User Interface and you are able to download Windows 10 Home (N), Education (N) and the Pro (N) ISO. To download the Enterprise version you need to enter the command line. Here are the steps explained to download a Windows 10 Enterprise ISO:

  • Download the Media Creation Tool (MediaCreationTool21H1.exe), link
  • Select: “Download Tool now”
  • Open the command line
  • Use the following command to download the English 64-bits Windows 10 Enterprise ISO:
MediaCreationTool21H1.exe /Eula Accept /Retail /MediaArch x64 /MediaLangCode en-US /MediaEdition Enterprise
  • To download the Dutch 64-bits Windows 10 Enterprise ISO use the following command:
MediaCreationTool21H1.exe /Eula Accept /Retail /MediaArch x64 /MediaLangCode nl-NL /MediaEdition Enterprise
  • Enter the product key “NPPR9-FWDCX-D2C8J-H872K-2YT43”.  The KMS client keys can be found here: link

  • Select: Create installation media (USB flash drive, DVD, or ISO file) for another PC

  • Select “Iso file” and browse to a location to store the ISO. You need at least 8GB free on the C-drive and the ISO size is between 4 and 5 GB.

  • The download of the Windows 10 ISO starts.

Once the downloading of the ISO is completed it’s ready for use.

Quick Tip: The local Windows 10 taskbar is in front during an RDP session

Sometimes it happens to me that the local taskbar of my Windows 10 laptop is in front and you don’t have access to the remote toolbar during a full-screen RDP session. This is quite annoying. In the picture below you see the local toolbar of my Windows 10 laptop is in front during a full-screen RDP session.

Accessing the remote taskbar from the server is only possible when you don’t run RDP in full-screen mode. The fix for this is to reboot the local Windows 10 device or kill the “explorer.exe” process.  You can do this manually using the Windows task manager or automated using the command line. The syntax is as follows:

C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe /c "C:\Windows\System32\taskkill.exe /F /IM explorer.exe & start explorer"

Check the hardware acceleration settings in you’re VDI environment

When having for example Windows 10 VDIs it important to know the hardware acceleration setting of you’re applications. When there isn’t a GPU (such as NVIDIA M10 or a NVIDIA Tesla T4) installed and hardware acceleration is enabled in the application this can introduce strange problems such as black screens and performance issues.

When no GPU is installed: disable hardware acceleration and when a GPU is installed: enable the hardware acceleration in the application.

I created a script to check the GPU hardware acceleration registry keys for the following applications:
– Office 2016/365 (For Office 2013 and 2019 you need to change the script)
– Google Chrome
– Mozilla Firefox
– Internet Explorer 11
– Microsoft Edge based on Chromium

If you have other applications to check let me know. The script can be found on my GitHub page found here.