Welcome to our guide on how to set up a Remote Desktop Server on Windows 7! If you’re looking to gain remote access to your Windows 7 machine, you’ve come to the right place. By setting up Remote Desktop, you can easily connect to your computer from anywhere, as long as you have an internet connection. In this article, we’ll walk you through 5 easy steps to help you get started.
First, we’ll show you how to enable Remote Desktop on your Windows 7 machine. After that, we’ll guide you through the process of configuring your router settings to allow remote connections. Then, we’ll help you create a new user account specifically for remote access. Next, we’ll show you how to allow Remote Desktop through Windows Firewall to ensure a secure connection. Finally, we’ll cover how to connect to your Remote Desktop from anywhere.
By the end of this article, you’ll have a complete understanding of how to set up Remote Desktop on your Windows 7 machine. So, if you’re ready to get started, let’s dive right in!
Step 1: Enable Remote Desktop
Remote Desktop is a built-in feature in Windows 7 that allows you to access your desktop remotely. Enabling this feature is the first step in setting up your Remote Desktop Server. To enable Remote Desktop, follow these simple steps:
Step 1: Click on the Start button and navigate to the Control Panel.
Step 2: Click on the System and Security option.
Step 3: Click on the System option.
Step 4: Click on the Remote settings link located in the left-hand pane.
Step 5: In the Remote tab, select the “Allow remote connections to this computer” option.
Once you have completed these steps, Remote Desktop will be enabled on your Windows 7 machine. You can now move on to the next step and configure your router settings to allow remote access to your computer.
Check Windows 7 Version
Click the Start button, and then right-click on Computer.
Click Properties in the context menu.
Look for the Edition and System type entries. Remote Desktop is available in all versions of Windows 7, but only the Professional, Ultimate, and Enterprise editions allow incoming remote connections. If you have a Home or Starter edition, you will not be able to connect to Remote Desktop.
If you are unsure about your Windows 7 version, you can also use the winver command to check your edition and build number. Simply open the Start menu and type winver in the search box. Press Enter and a dialog box will appear showing your Windows version information.
It is important to ensure that your version of Windows 7 is compatible with Remote Desktop before proceeding with the setup process. If you have a version that does not support Remote Desktop, you may need to upgrade to a supported edition or consider using an alternative remote access solution.
Once you have confirmed that your Windows 7 version supports Remote Desktop, you can proceed with enabling the Remote Desktop feature in the next step.
Enable Remote Desktop
To enable Remote Desktop, click the Start button, right-click on Computer, and select Properties.
- Click on the Remote settings link located on the left side of the window.
- Under the Remote Desktop section, select the option that says Allow connections from computers running any version of Remote Desktop.
- Click Apply and then click OK to close the window.
If your computer is connected to a domain, you may need to contact your network administrator to enable Remote Desktop.
Step 2: Configure Router Settings
If you want to access your Remote Desktop server from outside your local network, you’ll need to configure your router’s port forwarding settings. The specific steps to do this will vary depending on your router, but the basic process is the same. You’ll need to:
Find your router’s IP address: You can usually find this information in the router’s manual or by searching for your router’s model number online. Alternatively, you can find your IP address by opening the Command Prompt and typing “ipconfig”. Look for the “Default Gateway” entry, which should display your router’s IP address.
Log in to your router: Open your web browser and enter your router’s IP address in the address bar. You’ll be prompted to enter your router’s username and password. If you’ve never changed these, check your router’s manual or search for default login information online.
Navigate to the port forwarding settings: The exact location of these settings will depend on your router’s manufacturer and model. Look for a section called “Port Forwarding”, “NAT/QoS”, or something similar. You may need to consult your router’s manual or do some online research to find the specific location of these settings.
Create a new port forwarding rule: Once you’ve located the port forwarding settings, you’ll need to create a new rule to forward incoming traffic to your Remote Desktop server. You’ll need to specify the port number that Remote Desktop is using (by default, this is port 3389) and the IP address of your Remote Desktop server.
Save your settings: Once you’ve created the port forwarding rule, be sure to save your settings. Your router may prompt you to reboot or apply the changes before they take effect.
Find Your Router’s IP Address
If you don’t know the IP address of your router, don’t worry, it’s easy to find. On Windows 7, click on the Start menu and type “cmd” in the search bar. Open the Command Prompt application that appears.
Type “ipconfig” in the Command Prompt and hit Enter. Look for the Default Gateway address under your network adapter’s details. This is the IP address of your router. Note it down.
If you’re using a Mac, click on the Apple icon on the top left of the screen and select “System Preferences”. Click on “Network” and select your active network connection. The IP address of your router will be listed next to “Router”. Note it down.
Alternatively, you can also check the documentation that came with your router or look it up online using the model number.
Once you have your router’s IP address, open your web browser and enter the IP address into the address bar. Hit Enter to go to your router’s login page.
Configure Router Port Forwarding
Once you have your router’s IP address, you can log in to its admin page using your web browser. The process will vary depending on the brand and model of your router, but typically you’ll need to enter a username and password to access the settings.
Navigate to the port forwarding section of your router’s settings. This may be located under the “Advanced” or “Security” section. Choose to add a new port forwarding rule and enter the necessary information. You will need to specify the protocol (TCP or UDP) and the port number (default is 3389) for remote desktop.
Next, you will need to enter the internal IP address of your computer running the remote desktop server. This can typically be found in your computer’s network settings. Once you’ve entered all the required information, save the settings and exit the admin page.
Test Router Connection
After setting up port forwarding, it’s important to test the connection to ensure it’s working properly. To do this, you can use a free online service like CanYouSeeMe.org that checks whether the port is open and accepting connections.
Simply enter the port number you set up for Remote Desktop, click “check port,” and the website will test the port and let you know if it’s open and accessible from the internet. If the port is closed, double-check your router and firewall settings to make sure everything is configured correctly.
If the port is open, you can test the Remote Desktop connection by using a device outside of your local network to connect to your computer. Make sure to use your public IP address when connecting, which can be found by searching “what is my IP” on Google.
Step 3: Create a New User Account
User Account: To access your remote desktop, you need a user account with administrator privileges. It is not recommended to use your current account for security reasons. Hence, create a new user account by navigating to the Control Panel > User Accounts > Manage another account > Create a new account.
Username and Password: When creating the new account, give it a recognizable name and a strong password. You can also make it a standard user if you want to limit its access. Note down the credentials to log in later.
Administrator Access: After creating the new user account, give it administrator access. Go to the Control Panel > User Accounts > Change account type and select the new account. Set it to Administrator and click on Change Account Type to save the changes.
Create a New User Account with Administrator Privileges
Step 1: Open the Control Panel and click on the “User Accounts and Family Safety” option.
Step 2: Click on the “User Accounts” option and then click “Manage another account.”
Step 3: Click on the “Create a new account” option and enter a name for the account. Select “Administrator” as the account type and click “Create Account.”
Step 4: Allow Remote Desktop Through Windows Firewall
Remote Desktop connections are blocked by the Windows Firewall by default, so you need to configure the firewall to allow connections.
You can do this by opening the Windows Firewall with Advanced Security and creating a new inbound rule that allows Remote Desktop connections.
To create the new rule, select the Inbound Rules option in the Windows Firewall with Advanced Security and click New Rule. Select Port as the rule type and enter 3389 as the port number.
Make sure that you select “Allow the connection” on the next screen and choose which profiles the rule should apply to.
After creating the rule, you should be able to connect to your computer remotely using Remote Desktop.
Open Windows Firewall
Before allowing remote desktop through Windows Firewall, you need to open the firewall settings. To do this, click on the Windows Start menu and type “Windows Security” into the search bar. Click on “Windows Security” in the search results.
Next, click on “Firewall & network protection” and then click on “Allow an app through firewall.”
Scroll down the list of apps until you see “Remote Desktop” and make sure the box is checked for both the private and public networks. If it’s not checked, click on “Change settings” and check the box for Remote Desktop.
Allow Remote Desktop Through Firewall
After opening the Windows Firewall, click on the “Allow an app or feature through Windows Firewall” option.
Click the “Change Settings” button and scroll down to find “Remote Desktop” in the list of apps and features.
Make sure that both the “Private” and “Public” checkboxes are selected, then click “OK” to save the changes and allow Remote Desktop through the firewall.
Configure Advanced Firewall Settings
By default, Windows Firewall will allow Remote Desktop connections on the local network, but not through the internet. However, for added security, you may want to configure advanced firewall settings to allow only specific IP addresses to connect.
To do this, open the Windows Firewall with Advanced Security tool and create a new inbound rule for Remote Desktop. In the “Scope” section, specify the IP addresses or subnets that are allowed to connect. You can also limit the connection to specific users or computers.
Additionally, you can enable logging for Remote Desktop connections. This will allow you to track who is connecting and when, which can be helpful for auditing and troubleshooting purposes.
Step 5: Connect to Remote Desktop from Anywhere
Once you have configured your router, created a new user account, and allowed Remote Desktop through Windows Firewall, you are ready to connect to your computer from anywhere with an internet connection. Here are some tips:
Find your public IP address: You can find your public IP address by searching “What is my IP address” on Google or by checking your router settings.
Set up a remote desktop connection: Open Remote Desktop Connection on your remote computer, type in your public IP address and the username and password you created for the new user account.
Secure your connection: To secure your connection, you can use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) or Remote Desktop Gateway. These options add an extra layer of security to your remote desktop connection.
Troubleshoot connection issues: If you experience connection issues, you may need to check your router settings, firewall settings, or port forwarding configurations. You can also try restarting your router or your remote computer.
Disconnect properly: When you are finished using Remote Desktop, it is important to disconnect properly. Do not simply close the Remote Desktop Connection window. Instead, click the “Start” button on the remote computer, select “Disconnect,” and wait for the session to close before logging off.
Obtain Your Public IP Address
In order to connect to your computer from outside your home network, you will need to know your public IP address. This is the unique address that identifies your network on the internet.
To find your public IP address, you can use a search engine to search for “What is my IP address?”. The search results will provide you with your public IP address.
Alternatively, you can visit a website such as whatismyip.com or ipchicken.com, which will display your public IP address on their home page.
Connect to Remote Desktop with Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP)
Step 1: On your local machine, open the Remote Desktop Connection app. It is usually located in the Accessories folder of the Start menu.
Step 2: In the Remote Desktop Connection window, enter the public IP address of the remote computer you want to connect to.
Step 3: Click the Connect button and wait for the remote computer to respond. You may be prompted to enter your login credentials.
Note: If you have trouble connecting, make sure your firewall settings are configured correctly and that your internet connection is stable.
Tip: To avoid having to remember the IP address, you can create a shortcut to the remote computer’s desktop by right-clicking on the Remote Desktop Connection app and selecting “Pin to Start” or “Pin to Taskbar”.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the system requirements to setup Remote Desktop Server on Windows 7?
Before setting up Remote Desktop Server on Windows 7, it is important to ensure that the system meets the minimum requirements for hardware and software, such as a 1 GHz or faster processor and Windows 7 Professional or higher operating system.
What are the steps to enable Remote Desktop on Windows 7?
To enable Remote Desktop on Windows 7, you need to access the System Properties window, click on the Remote tab, and then select the option to allow connections from computers running any version of Remote Desktop.
How do I create a new user account with administrator privileges?
You can create a new user account with administrator privileges by accessing the User Accounts window, selecting the option to manage another account, and then choosing the option to create a new account with administrator rights.
What steps are required to allow Remote Desktop through Windows Firewall?
To allow Remote Desktop through Windows Firewall, you need to access the Control Panel, click on System and Security, select Windows Firewall, click on Allow an app or feature through Windows Firewall, and then enable Remote Desktop.
How can I connect to Remote Desktop from anywhere?
To connect to Remote Desktop from anywhere, you need to obtain your public IP address, configure your router to forward Remote Desktop traffic, and then use a Remote Desktop client to connect to your server using your public IP address.
What is Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) and how do I use it to connect to Remote Desktop?
Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) is a protocol used to remotely access Windows desktops and servers. To use RDP to connect to Remote Desktop, you need to launch the Remote Desktop client on your local computer, enter the IP address of the remote server, and then enter your login credentials.