Windows RT: Using the New (and BEST) Remote Desktop App

Woody Walton 2010

Woody Walton



Windows RT devices have been on the shelf for only a few days with Microsoft’s very own Surface and the ASUS Vivo Tab RT gathering the most press by far.   If you are wanting information on Windows RT specifically I would recommend Ron Grattopp’s post What you need to know about Windows RT where he discusses the differences between Windows 8 and Windows RT (they are NOT the same OS). 

Based my exposure to Windows RT (I bought a Surface pre-order), I am quite impressed with the OS, and with the Surface form factor in general.  The purpose of this post is not to review Surface or Windows RT, but rather to share my experiences using the preeminent RDP client on the preeminent Windows RT device.  I love the experience, and although  the new RDP client is not “new” if you have been running the Consumer Preview of Windows 8, it is new to the general population and certainly new to Windows RT users.  A refresher never hurts!


First of all Windows RT comes preinstalled with an RDP client that functions just like to ones you are accustomed to in Windows 7, run from the Desktop.


The New RDP Client is called simply “Remote Desktop” and is available in the Windows Store. (search “Remote Desktop” using the search charm in Windows RT while in the Store application).


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You will notice that the interface allows one to manipulate many RDP sessions simultaneously from within the confines of the application.  Notice I have Three running in the screenshot below.  You toggle between them in the same way as you navigate tabs in the New Internet Explorer interface!  Easy!  You will also notice the Remote Desktop App saves recent sessions and allows you to reconnect to them or edit their settings.

Screenshot (39)


The Editing Settings Menu appears thusly.  Additional options for Credentials and for connection brokers can be set by scrolling down the edit menu farther.  The only settings in the Desktop version not found here are the ones that allow for the automatic starting of applications upon establishment of a session.

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A well rounded and attractive authentication dialogue. (the Virtual Smartcard option is not within RT, I neglected to grab this screenshot on my Surface and substituted one from my Windows 8 Pro device).


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On the Windows Server 2012 Start Screen.  Notice the menu allows for sending touch commands to the RDP session such as snap, swipe for charms, etc.  Very elegant and effective.


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I really could not be more please with the app and I used it to demonstrate Hyper-V Replica from my Surface.  Hyper-V Replica is great by itself. Demonstrate it with a new Windows 8 Remote Desktop App AND Surface and the wow factor goes up.


My hat is off to the Dev team that brought us this great Windows App!








Comments (10)
  1. Mark says:

    How do you find the performance of the sessions are on the RT? I find that if I leave the session idle for 30 seconds or so it can take a good 10 seconds before the reconnect happens. Frustrating at best. Please let us know if you experience any performance

  2. A.J. says:

    Im a bit confused, can this be used to connect and control a Win7 or XP machine like normal RDP can? I read a post where it mentioned you could only use this app with Server 2012 or 2008R2.

  3. vijay says:

    I think we can't files over the remote desktop in windows RT. is this correct ? . for me it did not worked. i hope Microsoft fix  such fundamental issue.

  4. vijay says:

    I think we can't  copy files over the remote desktop in windows RT. is this correct ? . for me it did not worked. i hope Microsoft fix  such fundamental issue.

  5. Gurkan Deveci says:

    vijay, set-up a VPN connection to your office. Map your file server sharings. Copy the files there and take them from the RDP session 🙂

  6. Danny BDL says:

    I went through days of research before a Microsoft tech told me today that Windows RT RDP client and metro app are not supported to connect through a server 2008 R2 RD Gateway.  It will work on the LAN, but not through the Gateway.  Windows 8 has to be reconfigured to work.  But, you can't do it on an RT system.  Anyone have it working through a gateway?

  7. alex says:

    Hey Danny,

    If you search  "remote' from the Win8 Start Screen, you'll see both a Metro and Desktop version of the RDP client. The Desktop version works fine when connecting through the RDS farm .. the Metro version fails with a protocal error. Apparently that's a problem that afflicts alot of generic RDP clients, and has to do with the app falling over when the gateway switches the connection to a server it's load balancing for.

    MS will no doubt fix this

  8. Danny BDL says:

    Alex, thanks.  That didn't help me.  It turned out to be an issue with the default RDP protocol in windows 8 and RT.  They default to UDP while the 2008 R2 default is TCP.  By installing Group Policy editor and changing the RDP connection method to TCP only, the problem was alleviated.


  9. Ashley says:

    I'm trying to use the mic on my Surface while connect to a win 8 machine. Doesn't work, changed the settings to Microphone "ON" in the RDP settings on Surface, still nothing.

  10. JohnGrenfell says:


    I've configured "Turn Off UDP On Client" on the SurfaceRT (and started the GPO service) but get the same "Because of a protocol error, this session will be disconnected. Please try connecting to the remote PC again." error.

    Can I just double check which GPO setting you've modified?



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