I often Remote Desktop into a Windows machine and then from there, Remote Desktop into another Windows machine. This results in two layers of Remote Desktop which are displayed full screen.

To back out of one layer is awkward because moving my mouse pointer to the top of the screen makes the pop down thing appear but sometimes it's not the pop down of the the connection I want to minimize.

How can I manage these layered remote desktop sessions? Ideally I'd like a way to just flip, similar to alt-tabbing, between them.

  • 4
    I don't think there's anything you can do. The issue is that you understand the sessions are layered, but the computers don't. To your computer, you've remoted into a machine. To the machine you've remoted into, all it knows is that it's remoted into a machine.
    – Chris Ting
    May 25, 2011 at 5:41

2 Answers 2


Ctrl+Alt+Pause will take the RDP client out of full-screen mode, it should only work on the current one. Once you minimize the inner RDP, you can Alt+Tab to other windows in the external RDP. Switching back to the inner RDP and clicking Ctrl+Alt+Pause will maximize it again.

Also, if you are using Windows 7 or have Remote Desktop Connection 7 installed, you can move the "pop down thing" before you open the second RDP client. That way you have them side-by-side and not one on top of the other.


It's possible to move the top bar horizontally. You could move one to the left and the other one to the right to distinguish them better.

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