Setting up a Remote Desktop Connection

Library Connect Remote Access Setting up a Remote Desktop Connection

With the Remote Desktop feature in Windows 7, you can remotely control a computer from another office, from home, or while travelling. This allows you to use the data, applications, and network resources that are on your office computer, without being in your office.

To use Remote Desktop, you need the following:

  • Windows 7 Enterprise installed on your office computer, or whichever computer you plan to operate remotely. This computer is known as the host computer.

  • Remote Desktop Connection software installed on the computer you plan to connect from. This computer is known as the remote computer.

Display data and keyboard data are sent over a WAN or Internet connection so make sure that you are working over a good connection … to use Remote Desktop over a slow connection could be a burden. It will work, but it may not respond as well as you would like. Low bandwidth connections can be used to remotely control a system, but it is not recommended.

Get Remote Desktop

The Remote Desktop Connection software needs to be installed on the remote host and comes pre-installed with Windows 7 so to verify that you have it, navigate to the following path:

Start > All Programs > Accessories > Remote Desktop Connection (For Windows 7)

Another way to launch the remote desktop application in Windows 7 is by typing "mstsc" in the Search box on the Start menu.

Enable Your Computer as the Host

Before you use Remote Desktop, the host computer has to be set up properly to allow it to be ‘controlled’. One of the first things you will need to do is to ‘enable’ the remote control of a system. To do that, you will have to make a quick setting change in the System Properties.

  1. Right-click on the Computer icon and select the Properties option.

  2. Click on Remote Settings in the left panel of the Control Panel Window that pops up.

  3. Make sure that “Allow Remote Assistance connections to this computer” option is checked.

  4. If your remote computer is running Windows 7 or 8 then select the option “Allow connections only from computers running any version of Remote Desktop (less secure)”.

  5. If your remote computer is running any other Operating System then select the option “Allow connections from computers running any version of Remote Desktop (less secure)”.

    System Properties

  6. Now click Select Users, if you don’t see your Login ID there click Add.

    Add User

  7. Type your Login ID into the object names box and click Check Names.

  8. Click OK on all open windows to save the changes.

Start a Session

Once you have enabled your JCU work PC to allow remote connections, and checked that the remote desktop connection software is installed on the remote computer, you are ready to start a Remote Desktop session.

Firstly make sure that you have established a connection to the JCU Network from the remote computer as per the information found on the Remote Access for Staff guide.

To create a new Remote Desktop Connection

Follow the steps below to create a new remote desktop connection:

  1. Open the Remote Desktop Connection application as per the instructions above

  2. In the Computer field type in the host name or the TCP/IP address of the host computer you wish to remotely control.

  3. Fill in your authentication credentials, Domain if needed, save the connection as a ‘profile’ so you can quickly go back to it later and access it again.

Don’t check the ‘Save my password’ check box because if your system becomes compromised, your system has now become exposed to the Hacker and the whole corporate network is potentially vulnerable.

  1. Once you have put in your credentials and all other pertinent information, Click Connect.

    Remote Desktop Connection

  2. Your request will now be sent to the system you want to connect to. The Log On to Windows dialog box appears.

  3. In the Log On to Windows dialog box, type your user name, password, and domain (if required enter AD), and then click OK.

  4. The Remote Desktop window will open and you will see the desktop settings, files, and programs that are on the host computer. The system that is in the corporate network can remain locked and safe while you are now inside it, working on it. Whatever you are doing cannot be seen by someone watching the console.

Note: To change your connection settings, (such as screen size, automatic logon information, and performance options), click on the other tabs (Display, Experience etc.) available when you open the Remote Desktop Client.

To Open a Saved Connection

  1. Saved connections are stored in your My Documents folder

  2. Windows Explorer > My Documents folder

  3. Then click the .Rdp file for the connection you want to use

A Remote Desktop file (*.rdp) file is a profile that holds a bunch of settings. You can make copies of them as you would any other file and just change the options internally to that profile and save it with another name. You can copy all the *.rdp files and store them in a folder on your desktop; you can even edit the Start Menu and make a folder called RDP with all your profiles in it. Whatever makes it easy for you to manage.

To edit an *.rdp file and change the connections settings it contains, right-click the file and then click Edit.

To log off and end the session

  1. In the Remote Desktop Connection window click Start then select the Shut down option.

  2. The Shut Down Windows dialog box appears.

  3. In the drop-down menu, select Log Off <username> then click OK.