Being able to remotely access our home PCs is something I’m sure a lot of us techies like or need to do from time to time. However, with Windows 10/11, you’re able to use you Microsoft Account to logon to Windows instead of the standard Local User Account. Problem is that when using this as your computer account, it’s not obvious what your Username should be when using RDP to connect to your computer.
In this article I will show you how to connect to your computer using RDP with your Microsoft Account.
First things first, it should be stated. NEVER connect to your PC using RDP via the Public Internet. Use a VPN or other secure tunnel first. Port forwarding RDP from the internet will most certainly leave you compromised, and your network attacked.
Secondly, use Network Level Authentication where possible when connecting to RDP. It provides additional levels of security to your credentials when connecting to RDP hosts.
Enable Remote Desktop Connections
Before we attempt to connect, you should enable Remote Desktop access for your Windows PC as it is not enabled by default for security.
Easiest way to do this is:
Go to Start Menu
Search for Remote Desktop Settings
Select Remote Desktop Setting
In the Settings window, ensure that Remote Desktop is set to On.
Under Remote Desktop Users, check that you account is showing as already has access
Login with Your Password
Before we then go an use Remote Desktop, you need to make sure you’ve logged on to you computer using your Microsoft Access Password.
If you’ve logged using Windows Hello, PIN or Biometric, log out and logon to the computer with your Microsoft Account. This will help associate your password with the Computer Account.
You will be able to use Windows Hello, PIN or Biometric logons for future access, it’s just this step needs to be performed first.
Check you Username
For Remote Desktop, we’re not using your Microsoft Account Email Address. This is not accepted by Windows for RDP connection so instead we need the Computer Account Username
Open Terminal/PowerShell/Command Prompt (Doesn’t matter, whatever floats your boat)
Type the following command
The result will be your username. It will the first five letters of your email address as a cut-down form.
Now Remote Desktop Time!
Now that you’ve done all the setup, you should now be able to use Remote Desktop to sign into your PC.
Username: <As Above Command Resulted>
Password: <Your Microsoft Account Password>
You should now be able to connect!