The remote desktop connection feature in windows allows you to remotely connect to a computer and use it as if it is your local computer. This article guides you on how to use dual monitors with Remote desktop connection on windows 10 and also remote desktop multiple monitors Windows 10 operating system.
This can be useful for lots of reasons, but if you are a system administrator and would like to setup remote desktop dual monitors, it is very easy (Depending on the OS on the Host and Client PC). Read more info from Microsoft regarding RDP setup and use.
The process to enable remote desktop on Windows 11 computers is slightly different. I am currently testing multiple monitor remote desktop setup for Windows 11 but the following guide will work if you wanna give it a go.
Remote Desktop Multiple Monitors Windows 10
One of the quickest ways to remote desktop with multiple monitors in Windows 10 is to select the “Use all my monitors” option before you make a connection. For more advanced setup and customization, this guide goes in much more detail.
I use iPad as second monitor on windows wirelessly as my third monitor and can confirm this works on that setup as well.
Before you can remote desktop using multiple monitors on windows, there are a few things that come into play for you to be able to use dual monitors in RDP sessions on Windows 10.
You want to make sure that Windows is detecting your second screen, if it’s just black or gives you the prompt “didn’t detect another display”, you will have to troubleshoot that first.
So, I am assuming that you have the following setup:
- You have a computer in a remote location that has two monitors connected to it.
- Have a dual monitor setup at home (or wherever you are trying to connect to the remote computer from).
- You are trying to remotely connect to the remote computer using the RDP client and use both of your monitors as you would on your local computer.
- If your scenario is different reach out to me in the comments.
1. Remote Desktop Multiple Monitors In Windows 10
Once you are sure that the remote computer supports multiple monitors in an RDP connection, let’s see how it is done.
Using this method you will use two monitors for the remote desktop session. The remote session will automatically expand to both of your screens.
To start remote desktop with multiple monitors in windows 10, do the following:
- Go to “Start” or press the Windows key on your keyboard
- Search for “RDS” or simply type in “Remote Desktop Connection”
- Hit the enter key and this will take you to the remote desktop connection application.
- Enter the computer’s name or the IP address, but before you press the “Connect” button, click on the “Show Options” button.
- Now a new window opens up with a bunch of different options like General, Display, Local Resources, Experience, Advanced
- Click on the “Display” tab and tick the “Use all my monitors for the remote session”.
- Now if you connect to the pc and go full screen, this will use both of your computer’s monitors
So, that’s how you can remote desktop dual monitor on Windows 10 or with all the monitors available.
If you are not able to remote desktop span 2 monitors with this trick, please check if you need to update your display drivers as that might be a conflict.
2. Remote Desktop Multiple Monitors In Windows 10: 3+ Monitors
What to do if you have more than two monitors and would like to manage your workspace differently? There are applications that might help you achieve this, but with the trick mentioned below, you might want to uninstall that clanky windows 10 app you’ve been using.
You can use this trick to alter your remote desktop dual monitor setup and choose which screen should span full screen with remote connection.
If you have a triple monitor setup and only want to use two monitors for remote desktop and the third one for your local system. That is easily achievable as well. If you would like to learn how to setup dual monitors in windows 10 locally, that process is a little different. I use this to remote desktop full screen one monitor while I use the other for accessing my local files etc.
You can also alter the setting if you have a dual monitor setup. I personally use my second monitor for the remote desktop connection and leave the main monitor for my local PC. You can use this to remote desktop only one screen and use the other locally.
Before we start to change the settings as we prefer, we need to know how your system detects these monitors.
- Go to Start and type “RUN” or hit the “Windows” + “R” key together. This will bring up the Run application
- Type in mstsc /l and hit enter
- You will see a dialog box with all the monitors connected to the system represented by a number
In the above screenshot, 0 is my main monitor, and 3 is my second monitor.
- Right-click on the desktop and open display settings.
This part might be tricky if you have more than two monitors. We now will try to exactly match the numbers to which monitor they represent.
Lowest number on the RDP = Lowest number on the display settings.
Let me explain.
In the screenshot above 0 is 1, and 3 is 2.
Once this is sorted, we can begin arranging the remote desktop settings the way you prefer.
Remote Desktop Multiple Monitors in Windows – Video Guide
2.1 Remote Desktop Use 2 of 3 Monitors
If you have more than two monitors and setup remote desktop to use 2 of 3 monitors and the rest for local use, let’s see how it’s done.
Running multiple monitors on a system is quite a heavy task, and if your system is laggy you might want to look into ways to make Windows 10 faster.
- Open the notepad application. Open the start menu and type in “notepad”
- File open > Select all file types > Open the remote desktop connection profile we saved in previous steps
- This opens the file and you can see a bunch of text. Scroll to the top and type in the following command.
selectedmonitors:s:a,b,cThis should be added to the top of the file and not towards the bottom.
a,b,c – Depending on which monitors you would like to use for the remote desktop connection, replace these with the numbers for the monitors that we found using the mstsc /l command.
That is how to remote desktop multiple monitors in Windows 10 and select specific monitors that you would like to use for the Remote desktop connection.
This opens up a variety of ways you can use the Remote desktop client. especially if you have three or more monitors, you can use two for RDP and others for playing YouTube videos or choosing songs from Spotify.
3. Limitations – Remote Desktop Dual Monitors
Windows version on the remote client: The remote computer you are trying to connect and use multiple monitors on, should have the right version of windows that supports dual monitor setup on a remote session.
Yes, not all windows support this feature. There are ways to enable remote desktop in Windows 10 Home but I would not advise that for everyone. That’s for users that understand the risk that comes with enabling and using remote desktop on a machine that should not.
I have made a chart below that will help you decide if you are able to do so on the remote computer you are trying to connect.
3.1 Which version of windows supports remote desktop dual monitors
One thing that I would suggest though, is saving this connection setting to an RDP file so that you can just load it every time you use it.
You can save your RDP multiple monitors setup file for quick access in the future by following the process below:
- Click on Start and search for “Remote Desktop Connection” and open the Remote Desktop Connection app. Alternatively, hit the Windows + R key together on the keyboard to bring up the run, type mstsc, and hit Enter.
- Type in the Computer name or the IP address that you want to connect remotely.
- Click on “Show Options”, click on the Display tab, make sure you check the “Use all my monitors for the remote session”.
- Go back to the “General” tab, click on “Save As…” and save it in a location that you can remember later on.
That’s it, folks. Let me know if you guys have any more issues to use dual monitors or remote desktop multiple monitors Windows 10 setup.