One of the threads I’ve seen going around the Orchestrator discussion list recently is how to run the Runbook Tester as another user. The Runbook Tester is launched from the Runbook Designer and automatically loads the runbook currently being edited. The Tester is launched in the user context of the user the Runbook Designer is running under. Normally, this is the account you logging in to the computer as. This is great, but what if you need to test some specific credentials and how they will work when the runbook is run under them. A perfect example is when you run the Runbook Server using a specific set of service credentials, but you’re logged in as your personal account, or if a runbook is being run (via the Invoke Runbook activity) using different credentials.

So how can you launch Runbook Tester as another user if it’s launched automatically from Runbook Designer? It’s actually pretty simple. You just launch Runbook Designer as the other user, then launch the Runbook Tester from there, and it will retain that user environment.

To start the Runbook Designer as another user, click Start > All Programs > Microsoft System Center 2012 > Orchestrator, then hold down the SHIFT key and right click on Runbook Designer. Select Run as different user. Enter the account credentials of the other user, and Runbook Designer launches. You can then go to the runbook you want to test and then click Runbook Tester.

Note: Your alternate user must have rights in the Runbook Designer to see the runbook and must be part of the Orchestrator Users group in order to the runbook to load in the Runbook Tester.

You can verify that this account is being used to open and test the runbook by going to the following directory:

C:\Users\<ACCOUNT_NAME>\AppData\Local\Microsoft System Center 2012\Orchestrator

In there you should see an XML file that represents the runbook being edited, and a file named RunbookTester.config that shows that Runbook tester is being opened in that user context.

So, the next time you need to troubleshoot a runbook and see if the account being used is the cause of a problem, remember this little tip and try running the Tester in the other user context!