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Is it possible to have a URL that launches a remote desktop session? I realize it may be considered a security vulnerability for some, but the convenience would really save me a lot of time.

I would like to have a hyperlink like: remotedesktop://example.org where clicking on it launches mstsc.exe with the target computer filled in (in this case with example.org).

How best to set this up?

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3 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

You could use a custom URL protocol handler, but this would mean the URLs only worked on computers where you had set this up. I think you'd also need a program to handle taking the URL as remotedesktop://example.org and converting to /v:example.org - although a batch file could probably do this.

See http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa767914(v=vs.85).aspx for more information.

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This is the real answer, I was just hoping for an easier/established way to do it. –  optus Aug 3 '11 at 17:50
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I originally said no, but if you have XP, there is something called the Remote Desktop Web Connection. I initially forgot there was a version for XP.

http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?DisplayLang=en&id=18145

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/284931

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There was something similar for Small Business Server 2003 called Remote Web Workplace, but even then, you could not use a direct URL. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Remote_Web_Workplace –  KCotreau Jul 18 '11 at 17:10
    
Correct me if I'm wrong- this requires me to install/configure something on each server that I would like to connect to? That's going to be prohibitive for me. Thanks though! –  optus Jul 18 '11 at 17:47
    
Yes that would be correct. And I agree, it is a pain in the neck...but you asked. :) Support for this was dropped as of Vista. –  KCotreau Jul 18 '11 at 23:08
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It's not quite what you want, but with Windows Server 2008/R2, you can have your RemoteApps and RDP machines shown on a TS/RD Web Access webpage.

In conjunction with TS/RD Gateway, you could have RDP working through port 443, which is useful in places that block other ports.

TS Web Access

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I sense that he means directly to his computer, like to a home computer. I could be wrong though. –  KCotreau Jul 18 '11 at 17:20
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