On Windows 10, Remote Desktop is a feature that allows you to access a computer remotely using the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) to provide assistance to other users or to manage a computer or server without being present at the location.
While the ability to remote access a device has been around for a long time, it was a feature that you needed to configure using Control Panel. However, you can now enable Remote Desktop on your device using the Settings app.
- How to enable Remote Desktop on Windows 10 using Settings
- How to enable Remote Desktop on Windows 10 using Control Panel
- How to enable Remote Desktop on Windows 10 using Command Prompt
How to enable Remote Desktop on Windows 10 using Settings
Use these steps to enable Remote Desktop on Windows 10 using the Settings app:
Click on System.
Click on Remote Desktop.
Turn on the Enable Remote Desktop toggle switch.
Click the Confirm button.
Once you complete the steps, you can connect to your computer using the modern Remote Desktop app (recommended) or using the Remote Desktop Connection built-in experience included with Windows 10.
You’ll also notice that as you turn on Remote Desktop, two additional options are also enabled (Keep my PC awake for connection when it is plugged in and Make my PC discoverable on private networks to enable automatic connection from a remote device) to ensure that you can always connect when you’re away.
In the “Advanced settings” page, you’ll also find additional options, such as the ability to require computers to use Network Level Authentication to connect. This is a feature that makes the connection more secure by requiring users to authenticate with the network before they can connect to the device.
The settings page also displays the current Remote Desktop port in case you need to configure a router to allow remote connections outside of the network. If nothing changes on your device, the port number should always be 3389.
How to enable Remote Desktop on Windows 10 using Control Panel
Although the Settings app make it super easy to allow remote access to your computer, it’s still possible to enable RDP using Control Panel.
Use these steps to enable Remote Desktop with Control Panel:
Open Control Panel.
Click on System and Security.
Under the “System” section, click the Allow remote access link.
Under the “Remote Desktop” section, select the Allow remote connections to this computer option.
Click the Apply button.
Click the OK button.
After you complete the steps, you can use the Remote Desktop app or the Remote Desktop Connection client from another computer to connect to your device remotely.
It should be noted that as you enable the feature using Control Panel, the option to require Network Level Authentication also gets selected by default, which is an option you want to have enabled anyway.
While you can use Control Panel to configure Remote Desktop on Windows 10 and previous versions, such as Windows 8.1 and Windows 7, the ability to turn on the feature using the Settings app is only available starting with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update and later versions.
Update April 25, 2019: This guide has been updated to reflect the most up-to-date changes available on Windows 10 using the remote access protocol.