The tiny Lenovo Q150 has become the dedicated Windows box for running TurboTax this season. In earlier years, I used the Token Windows Laptop through a remote desktop session that appears on a Xubuntu desktop, but the Q150 runs rings around the old laptop.
This time, no matter what I tried, I couldn’t connect to the Windows 7 desktop on the Q150 from my Xubuntu desktop. The usual search results suggested Windows configuration settings that didn’t quite match what the Q150 provided; a bit more searching revealed that Windows 7 Home flavors of the OS (this one is Home Premium) lack the Remote Desktop Protocol server required to export the desktop. The Q150 could act as a client that controlled another machine’s desktop server, but not the other way around.
The suggested solutions required applying patches, in the form of EXE files downloaded from sketchy websites, or dropping in replacement DLLs obtained from similar sites. All that seems like Bad Practice, particularly for a Windows box used to prepare our taxes, and I was unwilling to proceed along those lines.
From what I hear, Windows 7 doesn’t display the classic Blue Screen of Death nearly so often as before, although I did manage to lock it up during the course of this adventure. That’s OK, I can still use my favorite Windows wallpaper image: