A remote desktop connection allows you to connect to a Windows computer on campus from your own computer at home or in the dorms. These instructions are primarily aimed at faculty and staff connecting to their work desktops from home. Students have similar instructions to access the academic terminal server.

Please be aware that graphics do not transmit quickly over the network. Graphics intensive programs such as Autocad and Solidworks will not work well through the terminal server.


  • Start the Remote Desktop Connection Wizard. Remote Desktop Connection is installed by default on Windows.
  • To start the Remote Desktop Connection select Start, Run, and enter mstsc.


  • Search for Microsoft Remote Desktop in the App Store.


  • Due to the diversity of Linux distributions available, it is not possible to give a blanket recommendation. Som users have had success with rdesktop. If you need help, please email ithelp@wustl.edu with your distribution and any other relevant information, and we'll attempt to help as best we can.


To connect to the remote computer, connect to the appropriate VPN connection and follow the instructions for your operating system. If you are unable to access your computer because it is in power save mode, wake the computer from sleep mode.

For all computers on the SEAS network, you must know the name of the computer before you can establish a remote desktop connection. To find the name of your computer:

  • Choose Start, Run.
  • Enter cmd in the displayed box. This will open a command window.
  • In the command window enter ipconfig /all.
  • At the top of the output display you will find your computer name. It will be in the form xxxx.int.seas.wustl.edu. In the example below the computer name is anyname.int.seas.wustl.edu.

After the wizard appears enter to computer name you want to connect to.

If you want to use your local drives and printers when using remote desktop:

  • Select the Options button before you connect.
  • Select the Local Resources tab.
  • Check the boxes for the local resources you want to use in the remote desktop session. Note that in Vista you will need to select the More button to display a list of local drives.
To enter CTRL+ALT+DELETE on the remote computer enter: Right ALT+DELETE.



Also be aware of performance management of Remote Desktop on slow links.

When you are done with options select Connect to remotely connect to the computer.

Wake the computer from sleep mode

Register your machine

Before you can wake a machine from sleep mode, you need to register it in the database. To register the machine, you need to assign it a name and supply the MAC address of the machine. The name can be anything you want. The MAC address uniquely identifies the machine and an 18-character field in this format: xx xx xx xx xx xx xx xx xx.

To determine your MAC address:

In Windows:

  • Start
  • Run
  • Enter: ipconfig /all
  • The correct MAC address with be listed as Physical Address in the section that has a value in the Connection-specific DNS Suffix field

In Mac OS:

  • System Preferences
  • Network
  • Ethernet
  • Advanced
  • Ethernet
  • Ethernet
  • Ethernet Id

In Linux:

  • From a terminal window enter: /sbin/ifconfig | grep HWaddr

Once you have your mac address, you can register your computer: thunder.seas.wustl.edu

  • The host/alias name can be any value you like. If your computer has a name, it would be best to use that.
  • Enter the MAC address obtained above.
  • Click Register