"Please wait (for the Local Session Manager)" Windows 8.1 remote desktop

After installing several virus scanning applications (including Sophos, which seems to be known to cause this) on a recently infected computer, remote desktop connections took forever and sometimes never connected at all.   Uninstalling the virus scanners didn't help, nor did disabling all services with msconfig.  The system restore point I needed was already deleted.

The symptom was simply "Please Wait" showing for several seconds when starting the computer, switching users, or connecting via Remote Desktop.  Restarting would make it work temporarily.  Apparently if you disconnect while this message is shown, remote desktop will stop working until restart if you are affeted by a particular bug.

After going to Group Policy (start, run, gpedit.msc) and enabling Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> System -> "Display highly detailed status messages", the error read "Please Wait for the Local Session Manager" instead of just "Please wait".

The solution for me was to disable Remote Assistance in Advanced System Properties / Settings -> Remote tab.  No restart required.

After this, Remote Desktop worked normally.

Would be a shame if I ever wanted to enable remote assistance I guess.  I guess that's what TeamViewer is for.

Kudos to this post for helping me fix this:

Hope this helps!

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