Secure Remote Desktop Access Guide


As a faculty, staff, or student, you can access computers that you use within your local computer network remotely using the Remote Desktop technology built into computer and/or server operating systems. These instructions will guide you through accessing your Remote Desktop securely from outside of the UConn network without connecting to the UITS VPN.


You can only connect to your computer remotely if it is running a version of Windows that supports Remote Desktop.

This includes:

  • Windows 7 (Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions only)
  • Mac and Windows 8 instructions are coming soon. Please contact the UITS Help Center if you need assistance in the meantime.
  • Windows Server 2003, 2008 & 2012

In order to connect to your computer remotely, you must use the Remote Desktop Connection client that is included with Windows, which can be found via the search function in the start menu if the location is not already known. All versions of Windows 7 and greater include this client; however you should update your computer to ensure you have the latest available version of this client to take full advantage of new features. Faculty, staff, and students who are interested can upgrade their personal PC operating system at a discount.

Important Reminders

The computer that you want to connect to remotely MUST:

For Assistance

If you are having trouble connecting to your remote desktop, please call the UITS Help Center at 860.486.4357


Step 1: Enable Remote Desktop on Your University Device

Note:  If you are in a school, college, or department that has its own IT support, you may need to contact them for assistance and for configuration details specific to your area.

If you already have your computer configured to receive remote desktop protocol connections: e.g., you connect remotely already through a virtual private network (VPN connection), you can skip steps 1 and 2 and proceed to step 3.

  1. Right click on the Computer option from the Start menu.
  2. Left-click on Properties. The screen will display basic information about your computer.
  3. Left-click on Remote Settings from the left-hand side of the screen.

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  1. The User Account Control pop-up window will be displayed.
  2. Click Yes to allow the program, System Remote Settings, to make changes to your computer. The System Properties window will open on the Remote tab.
  3. NOTE: If you see the message “You must enable the Window Firewall exception for Remote Desktop” in the dialogue box, click on the provided link. The page that pops up will give you additional instructions on how to change settings for Remote Desktop Connection so that it works.
  4. Verify that the third radio button is selected. If it is not, select it.
  5. Click OK.

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Step 2: Note Your Computer Name

After completing the above steps, you will be returned to the Properties (basic information about your computer) window.

  1. Write down the information listed in the Full computer name field. This information is needed when attempting to connect to your University computer from your remote PC.

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Step 3: Connect Remotely

  1. Click on the Start button and open the Remote Desktop Connection software by typing “remote desktop connection” into the search bar, and then selecting it.
  2. Enter into the Computer text box the full name of the computer that you noted in “Step 2: Note Your Computer Name.
  3. Click the Options drop-down arrow.

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  1. Click the Advanced tab.
  2. Click Settings.

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  1. Verify that the second radio button next to field: “Use these RD Gateway server settings” is selected. If not, select it.Enter “” in the Server name field.
  2. Verify the box next to the field: “Use my RD Gateway credentials for the remote computer” is selected. (If you want to log into your remote computer using a different account, do not select this box.)
  3. Click OK.

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  1. Step 4: Authenticate Credentials
  2. Click on the Connect button.
  3. You will be asked in install a certificate. Click Yes.

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  1. In the “RD Gateway Server Credentials” window, enter your user name in the format “domain name\NetID“.
    • Enter your domain and NetID. E.g., “uconn\NetID”. Note: If this does not work for you, please contact your local IT support.
  2. In the “Password” field enter your NetID password.
  3. Click OK.

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* If you are prompted again, enter the user name and password of your remote computer (if you are prompted for this second step authentication, this login information is likely different than the above info entered).

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After authentication, you are now remotely connected to your UConn computer or server – Happy Working!