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Connect to Azure Virtual Desktop with the Remote Desktop client for Windows

Important

The Azure Virtual Desktop Store app for Windows is currently in PREVIEW. See the Supplemental Terms of Use for Microsoft Azure Previews for legal terms that apply to Azure features that are in beta, preview, or otherwise not yet released into general availability.

The Microsoft Remote Desktop client is used to connect to Azure Virtual Desktop to access your desktops and applications. This article shows you how to connect to Azure Virtual Desktop with the Remote Desktop client for Windows, which only allows you to subscribe to a feed made available to you by your organization administrators.

There are three versions of the Remote Desktop client for Windows, which are all supported for connecting to Azure Virtual Desktop:

  • Standalone download as an MSI installer. This is the most common version of the Remote Desktop client for Windows.
  • Azure Virtual Desktop app from the Microsoft Store. This is a preview version of the Remote Desktop client for Windows.
  • Remote Desktop app from the Microsoft Store. This version is no longer being developed.

Tip

You can also connect to Azure Virtual Desktop with Windows App, a single app to securely connect you to Windows devices and apps from Azure Virtual Desktop, Windows 365, Microsoft Dev Box, Remote Desktop Services, and remote PCs. For more information, see What is Windows App?

You can find a list of all the Remote Desktop clients you can use to connect to Azure Virtual Desktop at Remote Desktop clients overview.

If you want to connect to Remote Desktop Services or a remote PC instead of Azure Virtual Desktop, see Connect to Remote Desktop Services with the Remote Desktop app for Windows.

Tip

Select the version of the Remote Desktop client for Windows you want to use with the buttons at the top of this article.

Prerequisites

Before you can access your resources, you'll need to meet the prerequisites.

  • Internet access.

  • A device running one of the following supported versions of Windows:

    • Windows 11
    • Windows 10
    • Windows Server 2022
    • Windows Server 2019
    • Windows Server 2016

    Important

    • Support for Windows 7 ended on January 10, 2023.
    • Support for Windows Server 2012 R2 ended on October 10, 2023.
  • .NET Framework 4.6.2 or later. You may need to install this on Windows Server 2016, and some versions of Windows 10. To download the latest version, see Download .NET Framework.

  • Internet access.

  • A device running one of the following supported versions of Windows:

    • Windows 11
    • Windows 10

Before you can access your resources, you'll need to meet the prerequisites.

  • Internet access.

  • A device running one of the following supported versions of Windows:

    • Windows 11
    • Windows 10

Download and install the Remote Desktop client (MSI)

Here's how to install the Remote Desktop client for Windows using the MSI installer. If you want to deploy the Remote Desktop client in an enterprise, you can use msiexec from the command line to install the MSI file. For more information, see Enterprise deployment.

  1. Download the Remote Desktop client installer, choosing the correct version for your device:

  2. Run the installer by double-clicking the file you downloaded.

  3. On the welcome screen, select Next.

  4. To accept the end-user license agreement, check the box for I accept the terms in the License Agreement, then select Next.

  5. For the Installation Scope, select one of the following options:

    • Install just for you: Remote Desktop will be installed in a per-user folder and be available just for your user account. You don't need local Administrator privileges.
    • Install for all users of this machine: Remote Desktop will be installed in a per-machine folder and be available for all users. You must have local Administrator privileges
  6. Select Install.

  7. Once installation has completed, select Finish.

  8. If you left the box for Launch Remote Desktop when setup exits selected, the Remote Desktop client will automatically open. Alternatively to launch the client after installation, use the Start menu to search for and select Remote Desktop.

Important

If you have the Remote Desktop client (MSI) and the Azure Virtual Desktop app from the Microsoft Store installed on the same device, you may see the message that begins A version of this application called Azure Virtual Desktop was installed from the Microsoft Store. Both apps are supported, and you have the option to choose Continue anyway, however it could be confusing to use the same remote resource across both apps. We recommend using only one version of the app at a time.

Download and install the Azure Virtual Desktop app

The Azure Virtual Desktop app is available from the Microsoft Store. To download and install it, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Azure Virtual Desktop Store app in the Microsoft Store.

  2. Select Install to start downloading the app and installing it.

  3. Once the app has finished downloading and installing, select Open. The first time the app runs, it will install the Azure Virtual Desktop (HostApp) dependency automatically.

Important

If you have the Azure Virtual Desktop app from the Microsoft Store and the Remote Desktop client (MSI) installed on the same device, you may see the message that begins A version of this application called Azure Virtual Desktop was installed from the Microsoft Store. Both apps are supported, and you have the option to choose Continue anyway, however it could be confusing to use the same remote resource across both apps. We recommend using only one version of the app at a time.

Important

We're no longer updating the Remote Desktop app for Windows with new features and support for Azure Virtual Desktop will be removed in the future.

For the best Azure Virtual Desktop experience that includes the latest features and updates, we recommend you download the Remote Desktop client (MSI) instead.

The Remote Desktop app is available from the Microsoft Store. To download and install it, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Remote Desktop app in the Microsoft Store.

  2. Select Install to start downloading the app and installing it.

  3. Once the app has finished downloading and installing, select Open.

Subscribe to a workspace

A workspace combines all the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin. To be able to see these in the Remote Desktop client, you need to subscribe to the workspace by following these steps:

  1. Open the Remote Desktop app on your device.

  2. The first time you subscribe to a workspace, from the Let's get started screen, select Subscribe or Subscribe with URL.

    • If you selected Subscribe, sign in with your user account when prompted, for example user@contoso.com. After a few seconds, your workspaces should show the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin.

      If you see the message No workspace is associated with this email address, your admin might not have set up email discovery, or you are using an Azure environment that is not Azure cloud, such as Azure for US Government. Try the steps to Subscribe with URL instead.

    • If you selected Subscribe with URL, in the Email or Workspace URL box, enter the relevant URL from the following table. After a few seconds, the message We found Workspaces at the following URLs should be displayed.

      Azure environment Workspace URL
      Azure cloud (most common) https://rdweb.wvd.microsoft.com
      Azure for US Government https://rdweb.wvd.azure.us/api/arm/feeddiscovery
      Azure operated by 21Vianet https://rdweb.wvd.azure.cn/api/arm/feeddiscovery
  3. Select Next.

  4. Sign in with your user account when prompted. After a few seconds, the workspace should show the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin.

Once you've subscribed to a workspace, its content will update automatically regularly and each time you start the client. Resources may be added, changed, or removed based on changes made by your admin.

A workspace combines all the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin. To be able to see these in the Azure Virtual Desktop app, you need to subscribe to the workspace by following these steps:

  1. Open the Azure Virtual Desktop app on your device.

  2. The first time you subscribe to a workspace, from the Let's get started screen, select Subscribe or Subscribe with URL. Use the tabs below for your scenario.

    • If you selected Subscribe, sign in with your user account when prompted, for example user@contoso.com. After a few seconds, your workspaces should show the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin.

      If you see the message No workspace is associated with this email address, your admin might not have set up email discovery, or you are using an Azure environment that is not Azure cloud, such as Azure for US Government. Try the steps to Subscribe with URL instead.

    • If you selected Subscribe with URL, in the Email or Workspace URL box, enter the relevant URL from the following table. After a few seconds, the message We found Workspaces at the following URLs should be displayed.

      Azure environment Workspace URL
      Azure cloud (most common) https://rdweb.wvd.microsoft.com
      Azure for US Government https://rdweb.wvd.azure.us/api/arm/feeddiscovery
      Azure operated by 21Vianet https://rdweb.wvd.azure.cn/api/arm/feeddiscovery
  3. Select Next.

  4. Sign in with your user account when prompted. After a few seconds, the workspace should show the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin.

Once you've subscribed to a workspace, its content will update automatically regularly and each time you start the client. Resources may be added, changed, or removed based on changes made by your admin.

A workspace combines all the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin. To be able to see these in the Remote Desktop app, you need to subscribe to the workspace by following these steps:

  1. Open the Remote Desktop app on your device.

  2. In the Connection Center, select + Add, then select Workspaces.

  3. In the Email or Workspace URL box, either enter your user account, for example user@contoso.com, or the relevant URL from the following table. After a few seconds, the message We found Workspaces at the following URLs should be displayed.

    If you see the message We couldn't find any Workspaces associated with this email address. Try providing a URL instead, your admin might not have set up email discovery. Use one of the following workspace URLs instead.

    Azure environment Workspace URL
    Azure cloud (most common) https://rdweb.wvd.microsoft.com
    Azure for US Government https://rdweb.wvd.azure.us/api/arm/feeddiscovery
    Azure operated by 21Vianet https://rdweb.wvd.azure.cn/api/arm/feeddiscovery
  4. Select Subscribe.

  5. Sign in with your user account. After a few seconds, your workspaces should show the desktops and applications that have been made available to you by your admin.

Once you've subscribed to a workspace, its content will update automatically regularly. Resources may be added, changed, or removed based on changes made by your admin.

Connect to your desktops and applications

Once you've subscribed to a workspace, here's how to connect:

  1. Open the Remote Desktop client on your device.

  2. Double-click one of the icons to launch a session to Azure Virtual Desktop. You may be prompted to enter the password for your user account again, depending on how your admin has configured Azure Virtual Desktop.

  1. Open the Azure Virtual Desktop app on your device.

  2. Double-click one of the icons to launch a session to Azure Virtual Desktop. You may be prompted to enter the password for your user account again, depending on how your admin has configured Azure Virtual Desktop.

  3. To pin your desktops and applications to the Start Menu, right-click one of the icons and select Pin to Start Menu, then confirm the prompt.

  1. Open the Remote Desktop app on your device.

  2. Select one of the icons to launch a session to Azure Virtual Desktop. You may be prompted to enter the password for your user account again, depending on how your admin has configured Azure Virtual Desktop.

Insider releases

If you want to help us test new builds before they're released, you should download our Insider releases. Organizations can use the Insider releases to validate new versions for their users before they're generally available. For more information, see Enable Insider releases.

Next steps