03) Set Up Remote Desktop Connection from your PC or Mac

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This page describes how you install and set up remote desktop onto your Raspberry Pi so that you can access your Pi without connecting it to a monitor, keyboard or mouse.

Boot Up Your Pi

Plugin your USB keyboard, USB mouse and connect your monitor to the Raspberry Pi using an HDMI cable.

Connect the PSU to the Raspberry Pi and make sure that the MicroSD card is in place.

Plug in your Ethernet cable to the Raspberry Pi.

Power on the Raspberry Pi.

The Raspberry Pi should then boot up.

The default username and password is user name pi with the password of raspberry.

Set up Remote Desktop Connection

A Remote Desktop Connection allow you to control your Pi from a PC as though it were physically connected to the PC. It means you can do away with the HDMI monitor, the mouse and the keyboard connections.

I find xrdp a good way to do this although some users may rather go ‘headless’ and remove the GUI altogether. You would then connect to the Pi using SSH. There may be advantages in not using a GUI in that you could then have access to more memory. However, I find using the GUI much more convenient.

To connect to your Raspberry Pi from a remote computer we can install xrdp on the Pi and then just connect to its ip address from the PC.

First install xrdp using the following when in a terminal:

sudo apt-get install xrdp

Find the ip address of your Raspberry Pi using the following command in a terminal:


Look for eth0, assuming that you are connected to your local network using the eth0, and you should see an IP address which will be in the form:

Now in Windows you can set up a new Remote Desktop connection.

On your desktop create a new file with a .rdp extention.

Creating an rdp file on your PC

Right-click on the newly created .rdp file and select Edit.

In the computer entry box, enter the ip address of your Raspberry Pi and also enter in the username which in this case is pi.

If you save that, and then double click on the .rdp file it will allow you to connect to your Raspberry Pi and allow you to log in with the user name of pi and password of raspberry.

The Raspberry Pi will now go through a set of displays for configuration which are pretty straight forward.

Once you have finished setting up and installing the latest updates you can do away with your keyboard, mouse and HDMI connectors to the Raspberry Pi and you should be able to access your Pi from anywhere in your local network.

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