This page explains how to set up remote desktop access to a campus computer using the Remote Desktop Gateway instead of VPN. While VPN has been a popular means for access campus resources, due to security and cost concerns alternatives to VPN are increasingly being used for different kinds of access. The RD Gateway is the alternative solution for remote desktop access.

Windows Client Procedure

Below are the steps for opening a Remote Desktop connection via UT's RD Gateway. These steps follow the easist option which is to use our web application to generate and download a RDP connection file. However we also provide alternate instructions if you want to manually configure your RDP connection yourself.

  1. Go to https://secure.mccombs.utexas.edu/public/rdgw, enter the name of the computer you want to conenct to, then click the "Download Connection File" button.



  2. Depending on your settings, your web browser should either save the file to your normal download folder or else will prompt you save it wherever you choose. For easiest use of the connection file, we recommend saving it to your desktop or moving it there after downloading it.

  3. Once downloaded, just double click the file to open the RDP connection.

  4. The first time you connect to a computer through the RD Gateway you might see a security warning indicating the publisher of the remote connection can't be identified.  You can check the box "Don't ask me again for connections to this computer" if you would like to suppress this message the next time you connect.  Click the Connect button to proceed.



  5. You will then be prompted to enter your user name and password which will be used to log on first to the RD Gateway and then to your remote computer. Enter your EID in the format of "austin\eid"



  6. After clicking OK, you should immediately receive a Duo prompt on your mobile device. The Duo prompt is for the connection through the RD Gateway. Once you acknowledge that Duo prompt, you should see your Remote Desktop connection complete.


Note: If you are used to specific Remote Desktop settings that do not appar to be configured in this downloaded RDP connection file, you can right-click the file and select Edit in order to make those changes and then save the file.

If you want to manually set up a new connection or edit an existing connection file for use with the RD Gateway, please expand the instructions below

  1. Launch Remote Desktop from your Start Menu as you normally would.  You will need to click Show Options at the bottom of the client to expand the view to access the RD Gateway settings.
  2. Click the Advanced tab on the Remote Desktop Connection client
  3. Click the Settings button.
  4. In the Connection settings section, use the radio button to select "Use these RD Gateway serer settings:"  For the Server name field, enter "rdg.austin.utexas.edu."  Leave unchecked the boxes for Logon method option "Allow me to select later"  and also "Bypass RD Gateway server for local addresses." 
  5. Click OK to exit this dialog and return to the General tab.  In the Computer field, you will enter the hostname or the IP address of the computer that you wish to connect to.  Then click Connect and procced with step 2 below.


Macintosh Client Procedure

We do not offer a RDP connection file for Macintosh, since the connection settings are saved within the Remote Desktop application on Macs. Please use the instructions below for adding the RD Gateway setting to any existing Remote Desktop connections you use.

1.  Launch the Microsoft Remote Desktop application

2.  Select the Edit Icon in the lower left corner of the connection you want to update.

3.  Your settings may look slightly different from the ones in this screenshot if you have previously made your own custom selections. The only setting you need to change here is the Gateway setting itself. Select the up/down arrows in the Gateway field in order to change it from "No gateway".

4. Click "Add Gateway..."

5. Enter "rdg.austin.utexas.edu" as the Gateway name, and click the Add button. Friendly Name is not required, but you can retype the gateway name there as well if you prefer.

6. Click the Save button once you return to the main settings screen. Your connection will now use the RD Gateway going forward.

7. The first time you connect to a computer through the RD Gateway you might see a security warning indicating the publisher of the remote connection can't be identified. To keep from seeing certificate warning every time you connect, click the Show Certificate button,

8.  Then check the "Always Trust..." check box and click the Continue button.