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How to Change the Resolution & Refresh Rate Through a Remote Desktop

Updated February 21, 2017

Microsoft's remote desktop feature included in the Professional, Business, or Ultimate versions of Windows 7 is a tool that allows remote access from one computer to another. This access is possible through a TCP/IP enabled network connection and gives one computer control over the other. Using this remote desktop feature, you can operate the remote computer as if it were a local machine, allowing you to change the resolution and refresh rate of the system display.

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  1. Turn on remote desktop in Windows 7 for the computer that you're altering the resolution and refresh rate. Press the "Start" button and then right-click on the "Computer" option in the "Start" menu and select "Properties" to access the Control Panel home.

  2. Click on "Remote Settings" in the menu to the left in the Control Panel home screen to open the System Properties screen.

  3. Choose the "Remote" tab, and then make sure that the box at the top of the window labelled "Allow Remote Assistance connections to this computer" has a check mark. Select the "Allow connections from computers running any version of Remote Desktop (less secure)" option. Click the "OK" button to close the window and make the system ready for the remote connection.

  4. Find your IP address for directing the connection. Click "Start" and then select "Control Panel". Select "View network status and tasks" under the "Network and Internet" heading. Under "Connections," choose your local area connection to open your network status window. Press the "Details" button and note your IPv4 address. Send the address information to the remote computer operator, along with the machine's user name and address, if applicable.

  5. Establish a connection with the remote computer. Press the "Start" button and open the Accessories window. Under Accessories, select the "Remote Desktop Connection" application.

  6. Type in the IP address of the remote computer in the box marked "Computer," and then press the "Connect" button to make the remote connection.

  7. Type in the remote machine "User name" and "Password." Upon successful connection, you will have access to the remote machine's desktop via a Remote Desktop Connection window. The remote connection gives you control of the remote machine as though you were sitting in front of it.

  8. Right-click on the remote desktop, and then chose the "Screen Resolution" option from the pull-down menu.

  9. Click on the Resolution pull-down menu to access resolution choices for the remote system and move the slider to the new resolution.

  10. Select "Advanced Settings" and then click on the "Monitor" tab. Under "Monitor Settings" select the "Screen refresh" rate pull-down menu, and choose the new refresh rate for the remote monitor. Click "OK" to exit back to the Screen Resolution window.

  11. Select "OK" in the Screen Resolution window to set the selected resolution.

  12. Click on the "X" button in the Remote Desktop Connection window to shut down the remote connection.

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Things You'll Need

  • Two networked PCs
  • Windows 7 Business, Professional, or Ultimate edition
  • Remote machine IP address
  • Remote machine user name and password

About the Author

Larry Simmons is a freelance writer and expert in the fusion of computer technology and business. He has a B.S. in economics, an M.S. in information systems, an M.S. in communications technology, as well as significant work towards an M.B.A. in finance. He's published several hundred articles with Demand Studios.

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