So I have been using RDP over SSH for about the last year and I have found its stability to be much better than Logmein, teamviewer, VNC, and many others. While this method may not have all the fancy features that these other tools have, there is less lag, better performance overall, its free, its secure, and there is no middle server its direct point to point!
- SSHD server running on the windows machine you would like to RDP into. I would suggest using Cygwin rather than FreeSSHD due to security exploits.
- RDP/Remote Desktop Connections enable on this server. (This will be covered)
- The ability to setup port forwarding on your external router. Setup Forwarding
- The external IP Address of the network your server is connected to. Your IP
- Putty Client
Part One: Setting up the Windows Server.
Once you have a ssh server up and configured the next step is to enable RDP on your windows server.
- Open the start menu , right click on computer and select properties.
- In the properties window in the top left pane select remote settings.
- In the new “System Properties” window under the Remote tab check the box labeled “Allow Remote Assistance connections to this computer”
- Next in the same window under the Remote Desktop section, select “Allow connections from computers running any version of Remote Desktop” option.
- Then click “apply” , then “ok”.
Part Two: Setting up the Client machine for connection.
Once you have downloaded and opened the putty client it is time to set up the ssh session and tunnels.
- One the main putty page enter the external IP Address of your windows server the box labeled “Host Name (or IP address)”.
- In the left pane of the putty utility expand the SSH node and select Tunnels.
- In the box labeled “Source Port” enter a free port on your local system. For this I will use port 1234 as it is normally free.
- In the box labeled “Destination” enter the local IP address of your windows server followed by “:3389” the port for RDP.
- Leave the default settings below this set to “local” and “Auto”.
- Then Select “Add”.
- Now select the main putty page in the left pane at the very top labeled “Session”.
- In the “Saved Sessions” box enter a name you would like to save your configuration. as so you do not have to set this up again.
- Then press “Save”.
- Note: To open this session in the future select it from the list and select “Load”
- Then Select “Open” This will start the SSH session.
- Now for the final steps to open the RDP session. Open the start menu and search for “Remote Desktop Connection” and then open it.
- Then in the box labeled “Computer” enter Localhost: followed by the port selected to use in the putty configuration. In this case port 1234.
- Then Select Connect.
- Now it will prompt you with a credentials box. Just enter your account information and select “OK”.
- And Now you have a RDP Session over SSH!