Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP)

Taking the Windows experience to new devices and places—and empowering the mobile worker

Technology continues to transform the nature of work. Online collaboration empowers workers outside the traditional office, making remote work more connected, efficient, and productive. But to realize the benefits of remote work, connected workers require reliable, secure access to their data, as well as a seamless user experience.

The Remote Desktop Protocol is the foundation of remote desktop client solutions that take the Windows experience anywhere. RDP allows a user to open and use a Windows desktop remotely, on a range of computers and mobile devices, regardless of operating system or platform. RDP is part of Microsoft’s wider array of business and technology solutions, helping businesses stay nimble and innovative.

How RDP Works

RDP allows users of a remote client to connect securely to a server or virtual machine over a network. RDP connects with, and channels communication between, components of remote clients and servers.

RDP is a multi-channel protocol, with separate virtual channels carrying different types of data. These include graphics data, keyboard and mouse user input, device communication, file system, audio and video, and licensing information.

The RDP protocol has applications in secure business and government network solutions, including where an encrypted desktop is required. RDP client software is also built into Windows.

For developers building remote desktop client applications for computers, phones, tablets, or other devices, Microsoft offers a patent license for the RDP protocol set.

RDP Features

RDP enables the Windows experience across a range of devices, and operating systems.

RDP enables a secure connection between a client and a server or virtual machine. RDP can enable the delivery of an encrypted desktop.

Enables network terminals
RDP enables the use of network terminals and “thin client” PCs, which provide strong physical security by storing all data and documents remotely.

RDP Implementation

In addition to a license, developers licensing RDP receive a sample, source code, and product documentation. Documentation describing the RDP protocol is also freely available on the Microsoft Developers Network.

Our RDP Licensees

Microsoft licenses RDP to over 60 customers developing remote desktop solutions.

Learn More About RDP

Contact us to learn more about the RDP solution, or the RDP licensing program.