If you have multiple monitors, like me, you’re probably very used to having your development area (Visual Studio, SharePoint Designer, NotePad++, whatever) on one screen, and a browser (or PDF reader, or other tool to support you) on another screen.
As I recently subscribed to CloudShare to do some SharePoint and Office 365 development, I found my development efforts a bit limited by the in-browser RDP client, as you can use a single monitor only. Having to switch from Visual Studio to Internet Explorer back and forth during my development definitely took more time than wanted. I was therefore looking for a solution that allows me to use both of my monitors (laptop + external monitor) while working in my CloudShare virtual machine. As CloudShare uses RDP, as mentioned, I checked if I can connect with Windows’ RDP client (I can), and if I can get the multi monitor support to work (actually quite easy). So, the steps to achieve this are:
Log in to your CloudShare environment, and get the External Address of the desired machine:
Note: You’ll also need the Credentials listed at the bottom
Next, start the Remote Desktop Connection client in Windows:
Enter the External Address, and click on options:
Under Display, select “Use all my monitors for the remote session“:
Once you click Connect, the connection gets established, and you’ll be asked for the Credentials from above:
During your first connection, you’ll see the following security dialog. Select “Don’t ask me again for connections to this computer” to not be prompted again.
That’s it! Once the RDP view window opens, you’ll see it on all your monitors, here are my settings from inside the CloudShare machine:
[warning_box]Please note that you still need to keep a CloudShare connection open in the browser, and refresh regularly. By default, a CloudShare “Environment will suspend in 59minutes” of inactivity, which can extended to 180 mins per use. Your RDP connection won’t prevent this, so if you work for an hour through RDP only, the connection will get lost.
Also, please note that the External Address may change and is not always the same (not sure right now under which circumstances it changes, probably after each suspension), so you may need to go through this setup regularly.[/warning_box]