Force shutdown from a remote system

Applies To: Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows 8

This security policy reference topic for the IT professional describes the best practices, location, values, policy management, and security considerations for this policy setting.

Reference

This security setting determines which users are allowed to shut down a computer from a remote location on the network. This allows members of the Administrators group or specific users to manage computers (for tasks such as a restart) from a remote location.

This policy setting is supported on versions of Windows that are designated in the Applies To list at the beginning of this topic.

Constant: SeRemoteShutdownPrivilege

Possible values

  • User-defined list of accounts

  • Administrators

Best practices

  1. Explicitly restrict this user right to members of the Administrators group or other specifically assigned roles that require this capability, such as nonadministrative operations staff.

Location

GPO_name\Computer Configuration\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User Rights Assignment

Default values

By default this setting is Administrators and Server Operators on domain controllers and Administrators on stand-alone servers.

The following table lists the actual and effective default policy values for the most recent supported versions of Windows. Default values are also listed on the policy’s property page.

Server type or GPO

Default value

Default Domain Policy

Not defined

Default Domain Controller Policy

Administrators

Server Operators

Stand-Alone Server Default Settings

Administrators

Domain Controller Effective Default Settings

Administrators

Server Operators

Member Server Effective Default Settings

Administrators

Client Computer Effective Default Settings

Administrators

Operating system version differences

This setting was introduced with Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008. There are no differences in the way this policy setting works between the supported versions of Windows that are designated in the Applies To list at the beginning of this topic.

Policy management

This section describes features, tools, and guidance to help you manage this policy.

A restart of the computer is not required for this policy setting to be effective.

Any change to the user rights assignment for an account becomes effective the next time the owner of the account logs on.

This policy setting must be applied on the computer that is being accessed remotely.

Group Policy

This user right is defined in the Default Domain Controller Group Policy Object (GPO) and in the local security policy of workstations and servers.

Settings are applied in the following order through a Group Policy Object (GPO), which will overwrite settings on the local computer at the next Group Policy update:

  1. Local policy settings

  2. Site policy settings

  3. Domain policy settings

  4. OU policy settings

When a local setting is greyed out, it indicates that a GPO currently controls that setting.

Security considerations

This section describes how an attacker might exploit a feature or its configuration, how to implement the countermeasure, and the possible negative consequences of countermeasure implementation.

Vulnerability

Any user who can shut down a computer could cause a denial-of-service condition to occur. Therefore, this user right should be tightly restricted.

Countermeasure

Restrict the Force shutdown from a remote system user right to members of the Administrators group or other specifically assigned roles that require this capability, such as nonadministrative operations staff.

Potential impact

On a domain controller, if you remove the Force shutdown from a remote system user right from the Server Operator group, you could limit the abilities of users who are assigned to specific administrative roles in your environment. You should confirm that delegated activities are not adversely affected.

See Also

User Rights Assignment