ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Enable Telnet in Windows 7

Updated on December 7, 2012

First of all, What is telnet? It's a tool, specifically a "network protocol" used on LAN's (internal networks, like your home or office). It's essentially a remote Windows command "cmd" line interface.

There are two components to telnet, a "server" and a "client". In Windows 7 (starting with Windows Vista), telnet does not come pre-installed, but flipping it on is easy.

In this article I'll discuss how to enable both the telnet "Server" and the "Client". Using my Windows 7 desktop and a 7 test machine as the Server, I'll show communication on both sides and even give you a quick example of how to use telnet. Got your energy drink in hand? (I've got two).....Let's get to it!

Enabling the Windows 7 Telnet Client

Just like in Windows Vista, Windows 7 does not come with telnet installed. Here's how to activate the client:

  1. Control Panel --> Programs and Features --> "Turn Windows Features On or Off" , OR the even Cooler, faster way ......
  2. "Windows key" + "R" (for the "run bar") ---> appwiz.cpl --> "Turn Windows Features On or Off"
  3. 3. That's it! (no reboot required for the client). Now to set up the server on my test laptop.

Enabling the Windows 7 Telnet Server

1. On the Windows 7 Telnet "Server" use the "Windows Key" + "R" and type "appwiz.cpl". Then click the "Turn Windows Features On or Off" link, then select "Telnet Server".

TIP - Both machines can be Both a Telnet Server and Client if you want, meaning simply two-way communication. For the simplicity of this hub, I'm just setting up one as the client, and one as the server....

2. On the Telnet Server, make sure the "Telnet" service is enabled and on as well. If disabled, right click the service, enable and set to "automatic".

TIP - Super quick way to get to the Windows 7 Services MMC Console? Type "services.msc" in the run or search bar.

BUMMER! looks like we have to add a user to the "Telnet Users" group on the Server. No Prob! Here's how:

  1. On the telnet server, right click "Computer" and select "Manage"
  2. Click on "Local Users and Groups"
  3. Click on the "Telnet Users" group and click the "add" button
  4. Enter the name (that's already on this machine, in my example user "whoa") that you would like to use to connect with. Then, (admin tip), click "check name" to make sure you've got the right user and the telnet server recognizes the user. (follow my pics).
  5. Once you see the name in the format workgroup\user underlined, in my exapmle "BOX\WHOA", click "OK" and close.

PS -- I just showed you the proper way of adding a user to a local group on a Windows machine, sneaky, wasn't it? I'll try not to force to much more learning upon you (muwahahaha).

Quick Usage of Telnet

Woohoo! We are in. What does that mean? Let's play, er um, "Test", and find out...

  1. Once successfully authenticated, you'll see the "Microsoft Telnet Server" greeting and a prompt with your user. It may "appear" that you're in your own Windows command prompt, but you're actually connected to the remote machine.
  2. Let's test this connection by using a very simple Windows command, -- "Shutdown /s" , which means as you may have guessed, shutdown... the "/s" switch means shut down completely vs. the "/r" switch which means "restart". (I had to throw in the "/t" (time) switch so I could get a screenshot and have time to save it lol, 120 == 120 seconds. Let's see what happens on the remote laptop.

TIP - and don't tell your IT guy I told you this, but you know those days when you're in a hurry? and you see that "Windows Update" icon LOOMING by the shutdown button? Open a Windows cmd prompt and type "shutdown /s" (without the quotes). Don't get me wrong, please update as much as possible, but sometimes you just gotta get....

From the Client
From the Client
On the Server
On the Server
And from the client
And from the client


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • howlermunkey profile imageAUTHOR

      Jeff Boettner 

      5 years ago from Tampa, FL

      Hi WestelCS, yep, an oldie but a goodie. Thanks for stopping by :)

    • WestelCS profile image

      Tim Anthony 

      5 years ago

      A vintage application protocol. Quite successful too. But not popularly used anymore. Anyway. Thank you for this valuable information. Nice post.

    • howlermunkey profile imageAUTHOR

      Jeff Boettner 

      6 years ago from Tampa, FL

      @ChristyWrites - Hi Christy! Thanks for the positive feedback and "up" :)

      @Brett.Tesol - Thanks for the feedback, sincerely appreciated :) , and thanks for the up, useful, pinned and tweeted!

      @Lipnancy - Thanks so much for all of your support :), really, really appreciated!

      (Awesome way to end my work week....eyes barely open lololol) Thanks all

    • Lipnancy profile image

      Nancy Yager 

      6 years ago from Hamburg, New York

      Keep up the good work! I really enjoy your fact filled hubs.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 

      6 years ago from Asia

      Awesome step by step guide. Not something I will personally use, but definitely useful for some.

      Shared, up, useful, pinned and tweeted.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Awesome work here Jeff, and the print-screens add a lot of value too. Happy to vote up. Keep up the great work.

    • howlermunkey profile imageAUTHOR

      Jeff Boettner 

      6 years ago from Tampa, FL

      @jponiato, excellent point :), there's a reason why telnet comes ootb "turned off" ever since vista. There are others way to communicate, ssh is a great example, thanks for your feedback and stopping by!

    • jponiato profile image


      6 years ago from Mid-Michigan

      Lots of valuable information here. One thing to point out, the use of telnet is inherently insecure. Good for quick and easy access, but not appropriate for use in situations where private data is in play. SSH is a good alternative but more complex to set up.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)