Seeking Windows 7 Remote Desktop Input

I’ve been trying to find some concrete information on the use of Remote Desktop in Windows 7, but I’ve seen some conflicting reports about it. Specifically, I’m looking for information on using RDC with dual monitors. I know in RDC version 6, you could use span to extend your remote session over two desktops, but it is sort of an ugly process. I have been reading that Windows 7 uses multimon instead of span, and instead of having to start from a command prompt, there’s actually a check box to “use all available monitors” in the program settings.

The part I’m having difficulty with is if Windows 7, or Server 2008 R2, which have this version of RDC built-in, are required on both ends of the connection. Also, according to MS, it only works with Windows 7 Enterprise and Ultimate editions, but again, is that on the host end, or the client end, or both? If I have a Win 7 Ultimate host, and can get a copy of RDC 7 on Vista, would that work?

Not having Windows 7 installed anywhere, I have no way to test any of this, so if you have access to some of these versions and a desire to do some testing, I’d love to hear your thoughts! Leave a comment, or if you want to write up a guest post, drop me a comment and I’ll be glad to offer up a place for it!

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  1. I have windows7 at home and the office now but the problem is that I don’t have any devices publicly available that have dual screens that I could connect to to test it. There just isn’t the need to have dual monitors on a server – yet!

    1. Thanks Andy. I know it’s not something that many people deal with, but we do have a specific tool for legal document review that works so, so much better with dual screens, but all the data is hosted in Columbus, so accessing it from one of our satellite offices is insanely slow. We setup a machine that is local to the Columbus network and have users remote to it for better performance of the data, but they lose the dual monitor advantage! I’ve been hoping that the Windows 7 changes to RDC might help, but I’m just not sure without the ability to test it myself. 🙂

      How do you like Win 7 by the way?

  2. The multimon support is a function of what you are connecting to – nothing to do with the client. Version 6.1 or 7 of the RDC client will do it, but you have to be connecting to either a Windows 7 or 2008 machine on the server side. We use a couple of 2008r2 Terminal Servers, and it works perfectly connecting to them with multiple monitors on our XP machines – you get true multiple monitor goodness.

  3. I’m pretty much impressed with the stability of Windows 7. It is better than windows Vista which hogs my memory and cpu.–`

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