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Remote Desktop Client on Mac: FAQ

 

Updated: April 13, 2016

Applies To: Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2

You can use the RD Client to sit at a PC and connect to another PC in a different location (the remote PC). For example, you can connect to your work PC from your home PC and use all of your apps, files, and network resources as if you were sitting right in front of your work PC. You can leave apps open at work and then see those same apps on your home PC.

The following list provides additional resources for using Remote Desktop mobile clients.

The following information applies to setting up Remote Desktop.

Check out Connect to your PC using an RDP Client.

On the PC you plan to connect to remotely, do the following:

  1. Open System by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you're using a mouse, pointing to the upper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering System in the search box, tapping or clicking Settings, and then tapping or clicking System.

  2. Tap or click Remote settings. You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

  3. In the System Properties dialog box, under Remote Desktop, select one of the two options.

  4. Tap or click Select Users, and in the Remote Desktop Users dialog box, tap or click Add.

  5. In the Select Users or Groups dialog box, do the following:

  6. Tap or click Remote settings. You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

    • To select the search location, tap or click Locations, and then select the location you want to search.

    • In Enter the object names to select, enter the name of the person that you want to add, and then tap or click OK. The name will be added to the list of people who can connect to this PC.

System_CAPS_noteNote

You can’t connect to a PC that's asleep or hibernating, so make sure the settings for sleep and hibernation on the remote PC are set to Never (hibernation isn't available on all PCs.).

When you want to connect to a remote PC, you'll need to know the full name of that PC.

  1. Open System by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you're using a mouse, pointing to the upper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering System in the search box, tapping or clicking Settings, and then tapping or clicking System.

  2. The full PC name is listed under Computer name, domain, and workgroup settings.

You can only connect to PCs that are running these Windows operating systems:

  • Windows 10

  • Windows 8 Enterprise

  • Windows 8 Pro

  • Windows 7 Professional

  • Windows 7 Enterprise

  • Windows 7 Ultimate

  • Windows Vista Business

  • Windows Vista Ultimate

  • Windows Vista Enterprise

  • Windows XP Professional

  • Windows Server 2000

  • Windows Server 2003

  • Windows Server 2003 R2

  • Windows Server 2008

  • Windows Server 2008 R2

  • Windows Server 2012

  • Windows Server 2012 R2

  • Windows Multipoint Server 2011

  • Windows Multipoint Server 2012

  • Windows Small Business Server 2003

  • Windows Small Business Server 2008

  • Windows Small Business Server 2011

These Windows operating systems can be used as RD Gateway servers:

  • Windows Server 2008

  • Windows Server 2008 R2

  • Windows Server 2012

  • Windows Server 2012 R2

  • Windows Small Business Server 2011

These Windows operating systems can be used to serve as RD Web Access or RemoteApp servers:

  • Windows Server 2008 R2

  • Windows Server 2012

  • Windows Server 2012 R2

The Remote Desktop Client will not connect to these Windows Versions and Editions:

  • Windows XP Starter

  • Windows XP Home

  • Windows XP Tablet PC

  • Windows Media Center

  • Windows Vista Starter

  • Windows Vista Home

  • Windows 7 Starter

  • Windows 7 Home

If you want to access computers that have one of these Windows versions installed, we recommend you upgrade to a Windows version that supports RDP.

The following information applies to connections, gateway issues, and networking.

Here are some possible solutions to common problems you might encounter when trying to connect to a remote PC. If these solutions don’t work, you can find more help on the Microsoft Community website.

  • The remote PC can’t be found. If you see this error, talk to the system admin of the remote PC to make sure you have the right PC name, and then check to see if you entered the name correctly. If you still can't connect, try entering the IP address of the remote PC instead of the PC name.

  • There’s a problem with the network. Make sure that:

    • Your router is turned on (home networks only).

    • The Ethernet cable is plugged into your network adapter (wired networks only).

    • Your PC’s wireless switch is turned on (laptops on wireless networks only).

    • Your network adapter is working.

    If the problem keeps happening, talk to the person who set up your network.

  • The Remote Desktop port might be blocked by a firewall. If you're using Windows Firewall, follow these steps:

    1. Open Windows Firewall by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you're using a mouse, pointing to the upper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering firewall in the search box, tapping or clicking Settings, and then tapping or clicking Windows Firewall.

    2. Tap or click Allow an app or feature through Windows Firewall.

    3. Tap or click Change settings. You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

    4. Under Allowed apps and features, select Remote Desktop, and then tap or click OK.

    If you're using a different firewall, make sure the port for Remote Desktop (usually 3389) is open.

  • Remote connections might not be set up on the remote PC. To fix this, see the "How do I set up a PC for Remote Desktop Connection?" question in this topic.

  • The remote PC might only allow PCs to connect that have Network Level Authentication set up. 

  • The remote PC might be turned off. You can’t connect to a PC that's turned off, asleep, or hibernating, so make sure the settings for sleep and hibernation on the remote PC are set to Never (hibernation isn't available on all PCs.).

Verify that your computer is on. You can either enter your computers IP address or host name.

System_CAPS_importantImportant

Using the host name requires your network to resolve the host name properly through DNS. In many home network configurations only the IP address will work properly.

Verify that you are connecting to a supported Windows version.

System_CAPS_noteNote

Windows XP Home, Windows Media Center Edition, Windows Vista Home and Windows 7 Home or Starter are not supported without 3rd party software.

If you can see the sign-in screen of the remote PC but you can't sign in, you might not have been added to the Remote Desktop Users Group or to any group with administrator rights on the remote PC. Ask your system admin to do this for you.

If you want to access your office desktop from outside your company network, your company must provide you with a means of remote access. The RD Client currently supports the following:

  • Terminal Server Gateway or Remote Desktop Gateway

  • Remote Desktop Web Access

  • VPN (through iOS built-in VPN options

These issues can have several reasons. For all reasons it is important to note, that if you can, please check that the VPN works on the same network from your PC or Mac. If you can't test from a PC or Mac you can try to access some company intranet webpage with your device's web browser and see if this works for at least a couple of minutes.

  • L2TP or PPTP VPNs: If you are using L2TP or PPTP in your VPN, please set Send All Traffic to ON in the VPN configuration.

  • VPN is misconfigured: A misconfigured VPN server can be the reason why the VPN connections never worked or stopped working after some time. Ensure testing with the iOS device's web browser or a PC or Mac on the same network if this happens.

If you are using L2TP or PPTP in your VPN, please set Send All Traffic to ON in the VPN configuration.

Remote Desktop Client does not support RD Gateway messaging. Verify that the Remote Desktop Resource Access Policy (RD RAP) for your RD Gateway server does not specify Only allow computers with support for RD Gateway Messaging or you will not be able to connect.

The following information applies to keyboards used with Remote Desktop.

There are many types of Mac keyboard layouts. Some of these are Mac specific layouts or custom layouts for which an exact match may not be available on the version of Windows you are remoting into. The remote session maps your keyboard to the best matching keyboard language available on the remote computer.

If your Mac keyboard layout is set to the PC version of the language keyboard (for example, French – PC) all your keys should be mapped correctly and your keyboard should just work.

If your Mac keyboard layout is set to the Mac version of a keyboard (for example, French) the remote session will map you to the PC version of the French language. Some of the Mac keyboard shortcuts you are used to using on OSX will not work in the remote Windows session in this case.

If your keyboard layout is set to a variation of a language (for example, Canadian-French) and if the remote session cannot map you to that exact variation, the remote session will map you to the closest language (for example, French). Some of the Mac keyboard shortcuts you are used to using on OSX will not work in the remote Windows session in this case.

If your keyboard layout is set to a layout the remote session cannot match at all, your remote session will default to give you the language you last used with that PC. In this case, or in cases where you need to change the language of your remote session to match your Mac keyboard, you can manually set the keyboard language in the remote session to the language that is the closest match to the one you wish to use as follows.

Use the following instructions to change the keyboard layout inside the remote desktop session:

On Windows 10 or Windows 8:

  1. From inside the remote session, open Region and Language. Click Start > Settings > Time and Language. Open Region and Language.

  2. Add the language you want to use. Then close the Region and Language window.

  3. Now, in the remote session, you'll see the ability to switch between languages. (In the right side of the remote session, near the clock.) Click the language you want to switch to (such as Eng).

On Windows 7 or Windows Vista:

  1. From inside the remote session, open Region and Language. Click Start > Control Panel > Region and Language.

  2. On the Keyboards and Languages tab, click Change keyboards (under Keyboards and other input languages).

  3. Under Installed services click Add to see a list of all available languages. Select the language you want to use, click + to expand the list, and select the box. Click OK.

  4. Under Default input language, select the installed input language from the list, and then click Apply.

    Then close the Region and Language window.

You might need to close and restart the application you are currently using for the keyboard changes to take effect.

If you are using an international keyboard, you might see an issue where the characters that appear in the session do match the characters you typed on the Mac keyboard.

This can occur in the following scenarios:

  • You are using a keyboard that the remote session does not recognize. When Remote Desktop doesn't recognize the keyboard, it defaults to the language last used with the remote PC.

  • You are connecting to a previously disconnected session on a remote PC and that remote PC uses a different keyboard language than the language you are currently trying to use.

You can fix this issue by manually setting the keyboard language for the remote session.

On Windows 10 or Windows 8:

  1. From inside the remote session, open Region and Language. Click Start > Settings > Time and Language. Open Region and Language.

  2. Add the language you want to use. Then close the Region and Language window.

  3. Now, in the remote session, you'll see the ability to switch between languages. (In the right side of the remote session, near the clock.) Click the language you want to switch to (such as Eng).

On Windows 7 or Windows Vista:

  1. From inside the remote session, open Region and Language. Click Start > Control Panel > Region and Language.

  2. On the Keyboards and Languages tab, click Change keyboards (under Keyboards and other input languages).

  3. Under Installed services click Add to see a list of all available languages. Select the language you want to use, click + to expand the list, and select the box. Click OK.

  4. Under Default input language, select the installed input language from the list, and then click Apply.

    Then close the Region and Language window.

The location of many symbols on your keyboard depends on the used keyboard layout and language setting.

The following information applies to monitors, audio, and mouse issues.

Retina resolution is supported.

In order to make use of the right-click inside an open session you have three options:

  • Standard PC two button USB mouse

  • Apple Magic Mouse: To enable right-click, clickSystem Preferences in the dock, click Mouse, and then enable Secondary click.

  • Apple Magic Trackpad or MacBook Trackpad: To enable right-click, click System Preferences in the dock, click Mouse, and then enable Secondary click.

To enable the usage of two or more screens connected to your Mac follow these steps:

  • Right-click the Remote Desktop you want to enable multiple screens for, and then click Edit.

  • Enable the options Use all monitors and Full screen.

Sound upstream (from client to server, for microphones) is not supported by the Remote Desktop Client.

If sound doesn't play, log out of the session, not just disconnect, and log in again.

The following sections provide additional information specific errors you might see in the client.

You are not allowed to access the session you want to connect to. The most likely cause is that you are trying to connect to an admin session. Only administrators are allowed to connect to the console. Verify that the console switch is off in the settings for the remote desktop. If this is not the source of the problem, please contact your system administrator for further assistance.

This error can be caused by a misconfiguration on the remote PC. Verify the RDP security level setting in the remote PC options is set to Client Compatible.

The error message “You are not allowed to connect to the given host through the gateway server because of a Resource Authorization Policy (TS_RAP)” means that a Resource Authorization Policy on the Gateway server prevents your username from connecting to the remote PC. This could be the case:

  • You have provided the same name for the remote PC as for the gateway.

  • You are then trying to connect to the RD Gateway server itself which is probably not allowed for your username.

  • Your Windows user account is not a member of the user groups for remote access on the Remote Desktop server.

If you indeed want to connect to the gateway server itself via the gateway, do not use the external gateway name as PC name, use “localhost” or “127.0.0.1” or the internal server name for the remote desktop. If the entries are correct, ask your system administrator to view the event log on the Terminal server and to check if your user account is a member of the required user groups.

When a remote desktop client connects to a Remote Desktop server, the server issues a Remote Desktop Services Client Access License (RDS CAL) stored by the client. Whenever the client connects again it will use its RDS CAL and the server will not issue another license. The server will issue another license if the RDS CAL on the device is missing or corrupt. When the maximum number of licensed devices is reached the server will not issue new RDS CALs. Contact your network administrator for assistance.

The "Access Denied" error is a generated by the Remote Desktop Gateway and the result of incorrect credentials during the connection attempt. Verify your username and password. If the connection worked before and the error occurred recently, you possibly changed your Windows user account password and haven't updated it yet in the remote desktop settings.

Verify that VPN is enabled on your device. You can test your VPN connection by going to a webpage on your internal network or using a web service which is only available via the VPN.

In case of an RPC error 23014 or Error 0x59E6 try again after waiting a few minutes, the RD Gateway server has reached the maximum number of active connections. Depending on the Windows version running on the RD Gateway the maximum number of connections differs: The Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard implementation limits the number of connections to 250. The Windows Server 2008 R2 Foundation implementation limits the number of connections to 50. All other Windows implementations allow an unlimited number of connections.

The following list provides additional resources for using Remote Desktop mobile clients.

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