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How to enable remote desktop

Remote desktop allows users to login to a remote computer. In default installation setup, Remote desktop feature is not enabled in Windows. You need to configure the settings to enable this feature.

Windows XP / Windows Server 2003:

On Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, remote desktop can be enabled in the following way.

  • Click on Start Button
  • Right click ‘My computer
  • Select ‘Properties
  • Select the tab ‘Remote‘(If you are not seeing remote tab in System properties window then read this article : Remote tab missing in System Properties window)
  • Now Select the option ‘Enable Remote Desktop

How to enable remote desktop on all the computers in a domain using group policy settings?

Open group policy editor and navigate to the node ‘Computer Configuration -> Administrative templates -> Terminal Services‘.  Double click on the setting ‘Allow users to connect remotely using terminal services‘(you can find this in the list of settings displayed on the right under the Terminal Services node).
Configure this setting to Enabled and click on Apply button.

I am using Windows XP and ‘Allow users to connect remotely to this computer’ is unchecked and greyed out. How to enable it?

Looks like the above described group policy is enabled for your domain/computer. If your computer is part of a domain, the domain administrators would have set a policy to disable remote desktop. If your computer is a standalone one then check if you have configured local group policies unknowingly. You can open local computer group policy editor by running ‘gpedit.msc‘ from Run command.

Relevant posts:

How to enable remote desktop from command line
Remote desktop and Terminal Services FAQ

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