Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection Client For Mac Slow

Of course, you can also do the same with your Mac if using the Microsoft “Remote Desktop Connection for Mac” Client. Just look under Preferences About Ben.

Active1 year, 11 months ago

I'm using Windows 7 on a PC and connect to it via Remote Desktop Connection for Mac by MS, using a Mac. On the Mac, I have a 27' Display with 2560 x 1440 px resolution. The PC has a high performance graphics card (one of those that needs an additional power supply). Both machines are connected via network cable to a router. So network should be insanely fast.

However, the max resolution I can get is 1400 x 1050. The PC just has a old and bad 21' monitor connected to it.

How can I increase the resolution to 2560 x 1440 to work fullscreen with the Apple LED Cinema Display via Remote Desktop?

Maybe I shouldn't even ask, because I already experience some lag at the low resolution of 1400 x 1050. But I guess this can be resolved as well?

Daniel Beck
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migrated from serverfault.comFeb 1 '11 at 13:18

This question came from our site for system and network administrators.

5 Answers

You can save your connection as a rpd file and edit that file in a text editor.

There you can edit it the DesktopHeight/Width value to any wanted value given that the remote machine supports it

Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection Client For Mac


Microsoft Remote Desktop does not allow for larger resolutions than 1400x1050 (except with the Full Screen setting)

You could always use CoRD, an open-source Remote Desktop client for Mac OS X. You can specify the desired resolution for every machine you connect to there.

You can even configure custom screen resolutions in its preferences:

Daniel BeckMicrosoftDaniel Beck
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You can increase the resolution of Microsoft's Remote desktop Client, which may be a better alternative to using CoRD at reduced security.

On MacOS using Microsoft's 'Remote Desktop CLient for Mac v2.1.0', edit the file 'default.rdp' located in your user folder. I use 1920x1080, which is the native resolution of my 21' iMac. This results in a perfect full screen display connecting to Windows 7 clients. I have no idea why the preferences UI is limited to 1400x1050 - it works find at all sorts of resolutions.

The only thing missing is Aero glass over RDP, which I enjoy all the time when going from Win7 to Win7 boxes.


Version 8.0.2 created a .rdp file I opened with Text Wrangler:

I had to update desktopwidth and desktopheight to 2560/1440 ... using the GUI didn't let me save this resolution.

This worked fine:


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Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection Client For Mac Slow Performance


1) On RDC / Mac, select your remote server from the list

2) Select 'Edit' from the main menu

3) Select the desired resolution from the 'Resolution' list

4) OK / Confirm this screen.

5) Double click on your remote connection, this will start, yes, it might not be in the resolution you like yet (i.e. parts of the screen might not show on your MAC yet).

6) Go to the main menu, click on 'Window' and then select 'Scaling', this should change the screen to the resolution you like.

I hope this helps


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