Remote desktop connections allow people to view and control the desktop of one computer while sitting at a computer in another location. The remote desktop connection will appear as if you are sitting at the computer to which you are remotely connected. In conjunction with the VPN client, you can access your Stanford computer’s desktop from home. For PCs, Windows provides a Remote Desktop Connection client which allows you to accomplish this. We do NOT recommend using any type of VNC connections as they are not encrypted. VNC connections may be subject to compromise.
Setting up Windows Remote Desktop Connection
On the target computer (the computer TO which you want to connect)
- Click on the Start menu and go to Control Panels -> System (Control Panels are sometimes under Settings in the Start menu)
- Click the Remote tab
- Under Remote Desktop, check “Allow users to connect remotely to this computer” and click OK.
- Click on the Start menu and click “Run…”
- Type cmd and click OK.
- At the command prompt, type ipconfig
- Under your Local Area Connection, look for a field called “IP Address” and write down that number. If you are on the School of Medicine network, it should start with a 171.65.
- *Note* The target computer must have a user account with a password to connect using the Remote Desktop Connection. If your user account does not have a password, you should give it one in the User Accounts Control Panel.
On the client computer (the computer FROM which you want to connect)
- Open the Cisco VPN client and connect to Stanford as described above. *Note: If your target computer is on the SUMCNet you will need the SUMCNet connection Profile. See the SUMCnet Remote Access section of the SUMCnet page for more information.
- Click on the Start menu -> Programs ->Accessories -> Communications -> RemoteDesktop Connection. *Note: it may help to put a shortcut of this on your desktop for easy access. To do this, navigate to the Remote Desktop Connection as specified above and rather than left clicking on it, right-click-drag the icon to your desktop and when you let go of the right mouse button, click “Copy Here”*
- In the Computer field, type in the IP address of your target computer as you found in step 7 above and click connect.
- You will be prompted to log in to your target computer. This is the same username and password that you use at that computer. For example, if you are sitting at your home computer and you are trying to Remote Desktop to your work computer, you would type in the username and password of your work computer here.
- Your target computer’s desktop will then appear and you will be able to work on it as if you were sitting at it.
- When finished with your Remote Desktop Connection, go to the start menu and click “Log off”. Do NOT click “Disconnect” as that will unlock the target computer’s screen so that anyone near it can use it without knowing the password.