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Cleartype font smoothing using Remote Desktop Connection

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If you rely on a remote connection client to get access to your files at the office or from your home, chances are you have probably tried using the client built-in into Windows called Remote Desktop Connection (also Terminal Services Client).

Personally, I don’t like opening up my main PC to the Internet but only to those computers on my local LAN (which only I use). So I use RDC to access my desktop when I’m in bed or somewhere else around the house using my laptop. The biggest gripe of using RDC (which has been way improved since Windows 2000 days) was that I couldn’t use any font smoothing (Cleartype in Windows) so reading documents or browsing the web on an LCD screen was adequate at best.

Well, it just happens that with the latest update of the RDC client (6.0) for Windows XP and Server 2003 that dates back to November, you can now use font smoothing as long as the client PC is running Windows Vista or Windows Server 2008. I just noticed about the change over the last few weeks, so now I’m happily writing this from my laptop running the RDC client connected to my main PC…

Over a LAN it’s not any slower than with Cleartype off, plus it should save some battery on the laptop since I’m not accessing the hard drive or processing stuff on the laptop itself, and my desktop PC is much much faster in the first place.

If you don’t have the latest RDC client installed you can download it here, and enable font smoothing using these instructions:

To enable font smoothing, follow these steps:
1.    Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click Communication, and then click Remote Desktop Connection.
2.    Click Options, click the Experience tab, and then click to select the Font smoothing check box.

A complete list of features on the latest version of Remote Desktop Connection can be found here.

Written by Julio Franco

October 1st, 2007 at 12:47 am