How to fix Remote Desktop incorrect password on Windows 10

Can't connect to a Windows PC with the Remoted Desktop app? It's a problem with the authentication feature. Here's the fix.

Windows 10 remote desktop sign in
Windows 10 remote desktop sign in

On Windows 10 (or Windows 11), if you try to connect to a remote computer that has remote desktop enabled and configured, you will probably get an incorrect password error.

If this is the case, you are not the only one. It appears that the problem lies in how you have initially set up the Windows account. For example, if you are using a Microsoft account and two-factor authentication is enabled, it seems that the system doesn’t store the authentication token, which is then used to authenticate remotely.

The solution to this problem is to sign in at least once with the local password to cache the access token that is then used for logging in remotely.

In this guide, you will learn the steps to fix the password problem when trying to connect remotely to a Windows 10 computer. These steps should also work on Windows 11.

Fix Remote Desktop password problem on Windows 10

To resolve the password problems with the Remote Desktop app, in the computer you want to connect, use these steps:

  1. Open Start on Windows 10.

  2. Click the profile menu and select the Sign out option.

  3. Click the I format my PIN option.

    I forgot my PIN

  4. Click the Use your password instead option.

    Use your password instead

  5. Confirm your Microsoft account password.

  6. Click the Sign in button.

Once you complete the steps, Windows should cache the access token correctly, allowing you to connect to the remote computer using the Remote Desktop. Also, this fix will address a similar problem when trying to access a shared folder in the server.

This should also work to avoid issues trying to sign in to shared folders in the network.

Alternatively, you can also resolve the problem by switching to a local account and then linking back it to a Microsoft account. Or you can create another local account that you will only use to connect to the computer remotely.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].