Windows Windows Server

Determine the Remote Desktop Client Version


The Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) is a proprietary protocol developed by Microsoft which is used for connecting to devices remotely. Remote desktop software can use several different protocols, including RDP, Independent Computing Architecture (ICA), and virtual network computing (VNC). It is worth mentioning that RDP is one of the most widely used protocols today. The Remote Desktop clients are available for different types of devices and form factors such as desktops, laptops, tablets, smartphones, and via a web browser. Using your web browser on desktops and laptops, you can connect without having to download and install any software. This guide discusses how to determine the Remote Desktop Client Version.

Remote Desktop Connection Clients and Features

The following table below lists the features currently available to each of our clients. Refer to the following articles on RDP: How to protect Remote Desktop credentials with Windows Defender Remote Credential Guard or Restricted Admin Mode, how to change the default RDP port in Windows, and how to Resolve Microsoft RDP Connection Black Screen.

Src: Microsoft

Note: Before you can connect to remote devices, you first need to enable Remote Desktop Connection on each server. You can use the Remote Desktop client for Windows to work with Windows apps and PCs remotely from a different Windows device. If you are searching for a remote Management tool capable of managing multiple remote desktop connections, RDCMan from SysInternals might be the best solution for you.

I recommend installing and testing the Devolutions Remote Desktop Manager

Note: Note: You can also use most versions of the Remote Desktop client to also connect to Azure Virtual Desktop, as well as to Remote Desktop Services in Windows Server or to a remote PC. As a Veeam Legend and VMware vExpert, I use Devolutions Remote Desktop Manager as shown below. I have just installed this on my Mac and will use it in managing my Lab PCs.

Here are some related SysInternal guides: How to install Sysinternals from the Microsoft Store, how to uninstall Internet Explorer from your Windows PC or Windows Server, how to use Active Directory Explorer, how to download and use Windows Sysinternals tools locally, how to use the PsInfo utility from SysInternals, What is System Monitor and how to install and use it, how to use the Process Explorer from SysInternals Tools, how to use SysInternals Live Tools, and how to detect registry keys using Process Monitor using Sysinternals Tools.


Why would you want to determine a Remote Desktop Client Version?

Recent versions of the Windows Remote Desktop client contain features that are not found in previous versions. This includes the Network Level Authentication, which increases the security of the Remote Desktop connection. The NLA feature was introduced in version 6 of the Remote Desktop client (also called the Terminal Services client).

When you are unable to connect remotely to certain devices, please check on the Remote Desktop Connection version. This is because clients must have a version of RDC that supports at least RDP 8.0 or higher etc. An example of this is the NLS.

To determine the version of your Remote Desktop Connection that you are running. kindly follow the steps listed below. To do this, right-click on the Remote Desktop Connection title bar window.


Next, from the dialog window, select About

Remote Desktop Connection

In the About Remote Desktop Connection window displayed, you will find the Remote Desktop Protocol that is supported and the various version numbers etc as shown below.

From Windows 10, Windows 11, and Windows Server 2016/2019/2022 all provide Network Level Authentication (NLA) by default. It is best to leave this in place, as NLA provides an extra level of authentication before a connection is established. You should only configure Remote Desktop servers to allow connections without NLA if you use Remote Desktop clients on other platforms that don't support it.


This can also be achieved via PowerShell by running the following cmdlets below.

(Get-Item C:\Windows\System32\mstsc.exe).VersionInfo.FileVersion

Lastly, Windows RDP uses the executable mstsc.exe located in c:\windows\system32 folder. In order to determine the version number etc., you would need to right-click on this file and go to properties, then click the details tab as shown below.


I hope you found this blog post helpful. In this article, you have learned to determine the Remote Desktop Client Version. If you have any questions, please let me know in the comment session.

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