Accessing VMs with SmartRDP


SmartRDP overview

Like direct RDP, SmartRDP gives you a remote access file you can use to connect to a VM desktop.

Unlike a direct RDP connection, SmartRDP does not require you to open an external port or run an RDP server on the VM. Additionally, the SmartRDP file is pre-configured, automatically works with most VM operating systems, and makes a secure connection through the Skytap infrastructure.

To connect to a VM using SmartRDP, download the SmartRDP file and open it with an RDP client on your local machine The computer that you are using to access Skytap Cloud. .


  • SmartRDP access may be disabled by your administrator.
  • Power VMs do not support SmartRDP.

Connecting to a VM with SmartRDP

To connect to a VM via SmartRDP
  1. Navigate to the environment that contains the VM you want to connect to.
  2. Click RDP on the VM.

    SmartClient RDP Button

  3. A SmartRDP file is downloaded to your local machine.

    You don’t have to add a published service on the VM to use SmartRDP, but if a published service is configured to use port 3389, Skytap lets you choose whether to download either a SmartRDP or direct RDP connection file.

  4. Use a supported RDP client on your local machine to open the SmartRDP file and connect to the VM.

    You can configure a sharing portal to include access to a SmartRDP file. For more information, see Sharing VMs and environments with sharing portals.

Supported RDP clients for SmartRDP

To open a SmartRDP file, use the latest version of the Microsoft Remote Desktop client for the operating system installed on your local machine.

Local operating system Supported client
macOS Microsoft Remote Desktop for Mac, version 8.0.0 or newer (Download here)
Windows 7
Windows Server 2008 R2
Microsoft Remote Desktop
Skytap requires TLS 1.2 or newer.
To update Remote Desktop Services (RDS) to support TLS 1.2, see Update to add RDS support for TLS 1.1 and TLS 1.2 in Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2.
Windows 8, 8.1, 10
Windows Server 2012, 2016, 2019
Microsoft Remote Desktop
This client is pre-installed on these operating systems.
Linux Not supported