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Siemens IDEA pulse programming service

IDEA Virtual Machine Server

The Siemens IDEA toolchain requires the use of unsupported legacy Microsoft Windows with virtual machines on Intel/AMD hardware. Due to the risks involved with continued use of an unsupported Windows version we provide a controlled research environment, accessed through a web server.

Registering for the service

Before you can use the facility you need to contact to request access to the system, we will enable your WIN computing account and allocate you one of the available virtual machines (of which there are ten).

Accessing the server


Once your account has been enabled you can visit the following URL:

If your computer is not managed by the Orchard service, you have never used our authenticated ethernet service (e.g., or you use particular web browsers, e.g. Firefox/Chrome you may need to install our signing certificate to allow access to this (and other) sites. Instructions on importing this certificate are available on our CA import page

Login using your WIN computing account and your should automatically be taken to your Windows 11 environment. Details on how to use the IDEA tools is not covered here, and you are referred to the appropriate physics support person for advice.

The web base virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) is powered by Guacamole. Detailed useage instructions are available in the Guacamole User Guide.

This service supports drag/drop of files to/from the remote server and clipboard transfer. Files up/downloaded via this method will be removed from the server after 24 hours.

Start/Stop/Pause/Resume/Restart your VDI

Restarting your VDI can be achieved using the Windows menu, during the reboot phase Guacamole will return you to a holding page and will automatically reconnect once Windows is running again.

Resources on the host server are limited, so to improve performance for other users of the system we ask that you either shutdown or pause your virtual machine when not in use for a significant period. The machine can be shut down using the Windows shutdown option, to pause, use the VM Manager facility:

Log in with your WIN Computing Account credentials and you will be presented with a list of your VMs (ordinarily you will have only one).

The status column indicates the current state of the VM and then in the Actions column are buttons to control the state:

  • Start
  • Suspend
  • Resume
  • Stop (ask Windows to shutdown) - unlikely to work whilst at login screen - use power off within VDI session
  • Force Stop (halt machine without clean shutdown) - use if machine hasn't stopped after 20-30 minutes
  • Reboot (ask Windows to reboot) - unlikely to work whilst at login screen - use restart within VDI session
  • Reset (force reset)


If you find that Guacamole reports that it is unable to connect to your VDI then it is likely that the VM has shut down, usually the result of automatic Windows update installation. Please use the steps above to start the VM again and if this fails please contact for advice.