How to Connect Linux Remote Desktop (RDP) from Windows 10 / 11

How to Connect Linux Remote Desktop (RDP) from Windows 10 / 11. In this post, we will show you what is remote desktop protocol, its advantages then explain the different methods to connect Linux machines from Windows.

Shall we start with how to Connect Linux Remote Desktop (RDP) from Windows 10 / 11.

What is Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP)?

Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) is Microsoft’s secure network communication protocol. It allows you to connect a desktop computer in one location to a remote computer at another location. In nutshell, users can remotely access their office computers from anywhere. By the same token, network admins remotely diagnose issues clients may be facing.

Once you establish a connection between the client and host computers, you can seamlessly access the files, folders, applications and programs from the client computer. For this, the host computer must be kept on.

Features of Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP)

1. Encryption

Primarily, RDP leverages cutting edge RSA Security’s RC4 cipher that encrypts small bits of data efficiently to establish secure communications over the network. The network encrypts the data with either 56 or 128 bit keys.

2. Reduce bandwidth

Secondly, RDP is able to use different mechanisms to reduce bandwidth of data transmitted over networks. This reduction in the amount of data is executed via persistent bitmap caching, data compression, fragments caching, or glyphs caching in RAM.

Persistent bitmap caching boosts performance considerably over low bandwidth network connections, as a few applications are likely to consume large bitmaps.

3. Roaming disconnection

If your remote desktop session terminates suddenly due to network or client failure, or if a user manually disconnects from the session, they will be disconnected and not logged off. Users can automatically reconnect to their previous session whenever they log into the system, be it from the same or another device.

4. Clipboard mapping

A user can easily copy, paste or delete graphics or text from one application to another running on the host computer and client computer and between sessions. 

5. Drive, Sound, Port and Network Print Redirection

Applications running on a remote desktop session can command print to a printer linked to the client computer. Well, client computer running the RDC client can hear the surrounding sounds happening on the remote device. By the same token, all the client drives can be seen on the remote desktop session.

6. Virtual channels

RDP has a virtual channel architecture that allows you to augment existing applications and develop new ones with additional features. Those require a network connection between an application running on a remote desktop session and a client device.

7. Remote control

Support teams easily view, access, and control a remote desktop session. They share input, view graphics, control functions, etc. between two remote desktop sessions to precisely diagnose a problem and resolve it. 

Hence, RDP leverages Network Load Balancing (NLB) wherever possible. Apart from this, RDP has the following features:

  • Supports 24 bit colour.
  • In full screen mode, keyboard hooking allows you to command special Windows key combinations to a remote device or to the client device.
  • Optimizes performance over low speed connections via reduced bandwidth.
  • With RDP, you install or update a single application on all devices connected to the network just with a single command. No need to install or update on each device separately.
  • Educational institutions can use RDP to offer distance learning programs to students.
  • Allows using multiple displays.
  • Supports RemoteFX virtualized GPU (Graphics Processing Unit).

Advantages of using Remote Desktop Protocol

Due to RDP technology helping businesses across the globe to securely access shared applications without the need to hire an IT expert. The major benefits of Remote Desktop Protocol:

1. Secure Connection

RDP establishes secure connection to access documents, files and folders. The connections to the remote desktop are encrypted to make sure the data remains secure and protected from cyber attacks or physical theft.

2. Work Remotely

The RDP allows you to work remotely from anywhere across the globe at any time. As long as you have a computer and a reliable internet connection.

3. Cost Effective

For RDP, you simply need a network of connected computers for remote access and single software on the host device. There is no need to purchase licenses for multiple computers.

Additionally, RDP works with various Windows devices and Operating Systems and offers robust physical security via remote data storage. Windows provides several tools that allow users to connect Linux from a Windows machine. Want to know how remote desktop from Windows to Linux? Read on!

How to Find the IP Address of a Linux System

Before connecting to the Linux remote desktop from the Windows machine, you will need to find out the IP address of the Linux machine. To find the IP address, log in to the Linux system, open the terminal and run the following command:

					hostname -I

You should get the IP address in the following output:

 2409:4041:8e18:f77c:4c42:3cb2:690:b3ad 2409:4041:8e18:f77c:6c98:2548:230f:fc82

If you want to find out the more information about IP address, run the following command:

					ip address

You should see the following output:

					1: lo: <LOOPBACK,UP,LOWER_UP> mtu 65536 qdisc noqueue state UNKNOWN group default qlen 1000
    link/loopback 00:00:00:00:00:00 brd 00:00:00:00:00:00
    inet scope host lo
       valid_lft forever preferred_lft forever
    inet6 ::1/128 scope host 
       valid_lft forever preferred_lft forever
2: enp20s0: <NO-CARRIER,BROADCAST,MULTICAST,UP> mtu 1500 qdisc fq_codel state DOWN group default qlen 1000
    link/ether 54:48:10:b8:3d:f1 brd ff:ff:ff:ff:ff:ff
3: wlp22s0: <BROADCAST,MULTICAST,UP,LOWER_UP> mtu 1500 qdisc noqueue state UP group default qlen 1000
    link/ether dc:a2:66:3d:5a:f1 brd ff:ff:ff:ff:ff:ff
    inet brd scope global dynamic noprefixroute wlp22s0
       valid_lft 2997sec preferred_lft 2997sec
    inet6 2409:4041:8e18:f77c:4c42:3cb2:690:b3ad/64 scope global temporary dynamic 
       valid_lft 3357sec preferred_lft 3357sec
    inet6 2409:4041:8e18:f77c:6c98:2548:230f:fc82/64 scope global dynamic mngtmpaddr noprefixroute 
       valid_lft 3357sec preferred_lft 3357sec
    inet6 fe80::227c:35a4:68a7:1872/64 scope link noprefixroute 
       valid_lft forever preferred_lft forever


Connect Linux from Windows Using RDP

To connect Linux PC from Windows using the remote desktop protocol, you will need to install the XRDP software on your Linux machine. You can install it using the following command:

					apt install xrdp -y

After installing and configuring the XRDP, log in to your Windows machine and open the Remote Desktop Connection as shown below:

Provide the Linux IP address in the Computer field, username in the Username field and click on the Connect button to access the Linux system.

Truly speaking ,RDP provides a simple and easier way to connect Linux machines from Windows. This makes it an ideal tool for the system administrator to manage the Linux machine.

Connect Linux from Windows Using VNC

VNC also known as a “Virtual Network Connection” is another remote desktop protocol that allows users to access Linux from Windows. However, you will need to install the VNC server software on a Linux machine and the VNC client software on a Windows machine.

To install the VNC server, log in to your Linux machine, open the terminal interface and run the following command:

					apt install tightvncserver

After the successful installation, start the VNC server and set a password using the following command:


Once the VNC server is installed and configured on the Linux machine. Go to the Windows machine and download the VNC for Windows software.

After the successful download, install it on your system and open it as shown below:

Now, provide the Linux IP address and click on the Connect button then provide the password you set when prompted to connect the Linux machine. After the successful connection, you can start managing Linux from the Windows machine.

Connect Linux from Windows Using SSH

SSH is a secure shell protocol that allows users to connect Linux from Windows over a secure connection. There are two ways you can connect to Linux using SSH.

  • With PuTTY Tool

Let’s see how to connect Linux from Windows using both tools:

Connect Linux from Windows Using SSH Via PowerShell

PowerShell is a powerful command-line tool in Windows. Further, that allows the system administrator to manage the remote system via a command line interface.

To access PowerShell, click the Start Menu and select Windows PowerShell. Once the PowerShell window is open, run the following command to SSH into your Linux machine:

					ssh root@linux-ip-address

You will be asked to provide the username and password of the Linux machine. After the successful connection, you can manage the Linux via the command line shell.

Connect Linux from Windows Using SSH Via PuTTY Tool

Another tool is PuTTY. Generally it allows you to connect and manage Linux via the command line. By default, the PuTTY tool is not available on the Windows machine. You can download and install the PyTTY tool from the PuTTY download page. 

After the successful installation, open the PuTTY tool as shown below:

Provide the Linux IP address, select SSH then click on the Open button. You will be asked to enter the username and password to sign in to your Linux device.

Thank you for reading How to Connect Linux Remote Desktop (RDP) from Windows 10 / 11. We shall conclude.

How to Connect Linux Remote Desktop (RDP) from Windows 10 / 11 Conclusion

In this guide, we explained different methods to connect and manage the Linux machine from Windows using the remote desktop protocol. I hope this guide will help the system and network administrator to easily manage Linux machines from Windows via the remote desktop protocol.

Summing up, RDP is an interoperable and secure technology that allows users to remotely access client computer running the RDP client software from anywhere. Often used by support technicians and network admins to remotely execute system maintenance, and diagnose and resolve issues client devices may be facing. 

Check out more Remote Desktop Services content here.

Avatar for Hitesh Jethva
Hitesh Jethva

I am a fan of open source technology and have more than 10 years of experience working with Linux and Open Source technologies. I am one of the Linux technical writers for Cloud Infrastructure Services.

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