Vista and Remote Desktop Connection are Not Friends

By on Sep 6, 2007 in Blog Posts, Software | 0 comments

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After much pain and suffering I’ve finally figured out why Windows Vista wouldn’t let me connect via Remote Desktop Connection (RDP) – dual monitors.

I discovered this after hours of troubleshooting. At first when I tried to connect using RDP I would see the Welcome screen and then it would turn black. Some research pointed to Aero being the cause of this, but I had no way of disabling it remotely because I couldn’t access my computer! Then I remembered that I could use DameWare Mini Remote Control to remotely access my computer using the RDP protocol. Since DameWare uses the same protocol I still couldn’t control the computer, but after opening some ports on my firewall I was able to push the DameWare remote control client to the computer and use it to remote control the machine. Finally, I was able to disable Aero and try RDP again. I was able to see a bit of the taskbar – though it was garbled – but it simply froze there. Back to the drawing board.

Now that I had remote access via DameWare I could actually troubleshoot the issue. Had it not been for DameWare and its ability to be remotely installed I would have been stuck without any remote connectivity to my machine for days!

On a whim I decided to disable my second monitor to see if that would make the remote connection any faster. Not only did it improve the speed in DameWare, but after disabling the second monitor I was able to remotely access my Vista Ultimate machine using Remote Desktop Connection. Victory, right? Well not really. Vista using RDP was so slow that it was unusable, so I decided to just use DameWare instead. At least now I know what was causing the problem.