Early this morning, as my insomnia-driven computer addiction ensued at hours in which even the birds refuse to wake, I noticed that a couple of new Windows Updates had been deployed by my in-house WSUS box and were ready for installation on my client machines. I thought we’d already had our patch-Tuesday for the month, so I decided to check out what was being updated.

Much to my surprise, there was a new version of the Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection (aka Terminal Services client) app available. Since, as far as I remember, there has never been an update to this program (since it’s initial inclusion in Windows XP), I thought I’d go check it out.

Thanks to my handy dandy (unofficial) Microsoft Download Notification RSS feed, I was able to quickly track down the stand-alone download package1.

For those that may be interested, the short description of this update is:

Remote Desktop Connection (Terminal Services Client 6.0) provides a way to use any new Terminal Services features introduced in Microsoft Windows Vista and Microsoft Windows Server Code Name “Longhorn” from a computer running Microsoft Windows XP with Service Pack 2 or Microsoft Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 1.

This simple update boasts a host of changes. Most notably are:

  • Lots of new Authentication updates
  • 32-bit color support
  • Font-smoothing capability
  • Terminal Services “Remote Program” capability
  • Enhanced Device Redirection (for things such as printers connected locally)

My favorite feature, however, is without a doubt the new Monitor Spanning capability. That’s right, now I can finally utilize both of my monitors when doing a remote desktop. Oh sweet joy of joys. Microsoft, sometimes I just can’t help but love you guys2!

For those interested in more details, here’s a link to the stand-alone download, and the knowledge base article3.

Update: In case you have difficulty finding them yourselves, here are download links for other platforms. Still, I’d probably just snag it over Windows Update… Windows 2003: here Windows 2003 x64: here Windows XP x64: here

  1. Oddly enough, Googling around and searching both Microsoft.com and the Microsoft Knowledge Base directly proved to be useless. 
  2. And god knows I try not to… 
  3. By the way… When did these start requiring passport logins? KB articles have always been publicly available, haven’t they? 
Originally published and updated .