The remote desktop protocol (RDP) is a secure network communication protocol developed by Microsoft. Allows network administrators to remotely monitor individual users’ problems and provide users with remote access to their desktop computers for real work.
The RDP can be used by domestic or mobile workers who need access to their work computers. RDP is also often used by support professionals who need to diagnose and repair user systems away from administrators who provide system repair.
In order to use remote desktop, the user or administrator must use the RDP client software to connect to a remote Windows PC or server using RDP server software. Visual user interface allows the remote user or administrator to open applications and edit files as if sitting in front of his desktop.
RDP clients are available in most versions of Windows as well as macOS, Linux, Unix, Google Android and Apple iOS. An open source version is also available. RDP is an extension of the International Telecommunications Union-Telecommunication (ITU-T) T.128 application protocol.
Features of RDP
RDP is a secure, interoperable protocol that creates secure connections between clients, servers and virtual machines. RDP works across different Windows OSes and devices and provides strong physical security through remote data storage.
Noteworthy properties of RDP include the following:
-smart card authentication;
-the ability to use multiple displays;
-the ability to disconnect temporarily without logging off;
-RemoteFXvirtualized GPU (graphics processing unit) support;
-128-bit encryption for mouse and keyboard data using RC4 encryption;
-directs audio from a remote desktop to the user’s computer;
-redirects local files to a remote desktop;
-local printers can be used in remote desktop sessions;
-applications in the remote desktop session can access local ports;
-shares clipboard between local and remote computers;
-applications on a remote desktop can be run on a local computer;
-supports Transport Layer Security;
-improvements to RemoteApp; and
-RDP can support up to 64,000 independent channels for data transmission. Data can be encrypted using 128-bit -keys. The bandwidth reduction feature optimizes the data transfer rate in low-speed connections.
-Note that not all RDP clients support all of these features. In addition, clients may support certain features only when operating in extended session mode.
RDP Use Cases There are three main use cases for
RDP. These include:
Remote troubleshooting (either through the company help desk or an individual trying to help an acquaintance).
Remote Desktop Access (eg accessing your home or office PC on the go); and
Remote Management (the ability to change remote configurations on a network server).
How does the Remote Desktop Protocol work? The
RDP provides remote access over a dedicated network channel. An RDP-enabled application or service encapsulates the data that is sent, and Microsoft Communications Services transfers the data to the RDP channel. From there, the operating system encrypts the RDP data so that it can be added to the frame and sent.
The Terminal Server Device Redirector handles all RDP activity. This kernel driver contains subcomponents such as the user interface, and RDP driver that handles forwarding, encryption, compression, and framing. The transport driver is responsible for packaging the protocol sent over the TCP / IP network.