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  • 20/03/2023
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www.makeuseof.com How to Fix the Remote Desktop Can’t Connect to the Remote Computer Error

If your computer can't seem to establish a connection through Remote Desktop, here are some tricks you can try to get things working once more.

Remote Desktop Connection allows you to connect to Remote Desktop enabled computers for troubleshooting and other purposes. However, when trying to set up or establish a connection, you may encounter the "Remote Desktop can’t connect to the remote computer" error.

This error can occur due to several reasons, mostly because of incorrect configuration and network issues. In this article, we look at the causes and some troubleshooting tips to help you get the RDC working again.

What Causes the Remote Desktop Can’t Connect to the Remote Computer Error?

This error may occur because of multiple reasons:

Now that you know the potential causes, let’s explore a few fixes you can follow to resolve this error on your PC.

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1. Enable Remote Desktop on Your PC

Before attempting any fixes in this article, make sure that Remote Desktop is enabled on your PC.

To enable Remote Desktop in Windows 10:

Follow our guide on how to enable and set up Remote Desktop Connection on Window 10 for further instructions.

If the Remote Desktop is already enabled, then turn it off and restart your PC. As the PC restarts, turn on Remote Desktop again and check for any improvements.

2. Check Your Firewall Rules

Depending on how you have configured your firewall’s policy, it may block some inbound and outbound communications. Check your Windows Defender Firewall settings to see if Remote Desktop Connection is blocked. If yes, add the app to the allowed list.

To unblock Remote Desktop in Windows Defender Firewall:

www.makeuseof.com How to Fix the Remote Desktop Can’t Connect to the Remote Computer Error

3. Change Your Network Profile

In Windows 10, you can choose to make your network profile Public or Private. On a Public network, Windows disables the network discovery feature to hide your computer from other computers.

Try changing your network to Private to see if you can establish a connection with the network discovery feature enabled. Here’s how to do it.

4. Reset the Remote Desktop Connection Credentials

When you establish a new Remote Desktop connection for the first time, the client saves the credentials for quick login. However, corrupt or changed credentials can often result in the Remote Desktop can’t connect to the remote computer error.

A quick reset of saved credentials can resolve this error. Here’s how to do it.

5. Add the Remote PC Address to the Hosts File

Another way to resolve the Remote Desktop can’t connect to the remote PC error is to add the remote IP address to the hosts file in your PC. Windows’ Hosts file contains information to map a connection between an IP address and domain name.

Manually adding the Remote PC address to the hosts file can help you resolve any issues that may occur because of domain name resolution. Here’s how to do it.

6. Enable RDP Protocol on a Remote Computer Using Registry Editor

For your Remote Desktop Connection to work, the RDP Protocol must be enabled in the Registry. Check the registry entry associated with the RDP Protocol to make sure it is enabled for your system. Here’s how to do it.

Close the registry editor and then launch Remote Desktop Connection to see if the error is resolved. If the issue persists, verify the RDP listen port configuration in the Registry Editor.

Related: What Is the Windows Registry and How Do I Edit It?

7. Check and Configure RDP Listen Port

RDP uses 3389 as the default listen port. Similar to the RDP status, you can also configure the listening port using the Registry Editor. Here’s how to do it.

8. Enable Remote Desktop Services in Group Policy Editor

If the issue persists, a Group Policy Object may be blocking the connection to your local computer. Here, you will have to manually enable the service using Group Policy Editor. Here's how to do it.

Close the Group Policy Editor and open Command Prompt as administrator. To do this, type cmd in the Windows search bar, right-click on Command Prompt, and select Run as Administrator.

In the Command Prompt, type gpupdate force and hit enter. This will force the recent changes made to the GPO.

9. Check Your RDP Services Status

Services in Windows OS are non-UI software applications that run in the background and are usually scheduled to run automatically. For Remote Desktop to work, services related to RDP should be running on both the remote and client systems.

To restart RDP services:

10. Add the RDGClientTransport Key to the Registry

Another workaround to fix Remote Desktop connection-related issues is to tweak the Registry Editor to add the RDGClientTransport key. It will force the Remote Desktop Protocol to use RPC/HTTP connection instead of HTTP/UDP.

To add the RDGClientTransport key:

Now You Can Connect to Remote Desktop With No Error

Remote Desktop is a handy tool available in the Pro version of Windows 10. However, you may sometimes encounter connection-related issues for various reasons, including disabled Remote Desktop, offline host computer, and network problems. Depending on your PC's status, you may have to follow one or more troubleshooting steps to resolve this error.

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Tashreef is a developer and works as a technical writer at MakeUseOf. With a bachelor's degree in Computer Applications, he has over 5 years of experience and covers Microsoft Windows and everything around it. When not looking for a missing semicolon or churning out text, you can find himtrying FPS titles or looking for new animated shows and movies.

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