Solved Exploring Remote Desktop Solution for Work Laptop Use


hershey4

New member
Local time
10:07 AM
Posts
6
OS
Windows 11
Here's the dilemma. My desktop of choice is Windows 7. Nice 21" monitor, easy on the older eyes. ( Totally secure adblock, ghostery, savvy user... please don't get sidetracked!). I WFH and use a company laptop for business (on DR table). I only use the laptop (15" hard on the eyes) when I need to log into their highly secure systems (about 30% of the time working) or zoom. I use network drives and do as much paperwork/mail/etc. on the desktop. Not always super efficient with split systems, but this has worked fine for 4 years.

Now we have changed home office systems and I will have to more work on the laptop --- probably 60% of the time and their portal design is pretty bad on the eyes. So I have ordered a 27" monitor for the DR table to solve this. However, that is not a good look in my home and I am thinking about alternatives.

I recently discovered that Remote Desktop MIGHT solve my problems. I thought I would try it out but I see it costs $99 and there is no trial version. I need to confirm the following before I jump in
  • will it be compatible with my W7 desktop? I don't want to assume. W7 SP1 Ultimate. Dell XPS Studio 8000 (2009)
  • will being remote pass our compliance/security checkup? Every time we login to portal, it runs some spylike software to check various O/S settings, encryption, password strength, screen time out, blah blah blah. It checks for a lot of things and not all that transparent about details, so this is a bit of a risk. What is peer-to-peer file sharing? It checks for that (and I pass. guess that doesn't mean network drives).
  • will it actually solve my problem? If I go fullscreen on desktop monitor, is resolution still 1080p?
  • Any other pitfalls I might encounter. Last time I used remote desktop was over 25 years ago with a VPN dial in on snow days. All I remember I didnt have access to home printer.
  • is there such a thing as a trial Pro version? I assume not, just putting it out there.. Downgrading back to Home could be messy.

sorry so long. I tend to over explain. :-)
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenova/Ideapad
Just a couple of tips, one is that Win7 is now unsupported and no idea how much longer antivirus/malware programs will continue to be updated since those programmers won't get backup support from Microsoft. Win8/8.1 is also unsupported and Win10 will be after Oct. 14, 2025. Many Notebooks/Laptops at 14", 15.6", 16" and 17" will work fine at 1920x1080 resolution if set for 125% or 150%, they are not intended to be more than an arm's length away like my Desktops on a 24" monitor.

Also, there is a difference between Maximized and Full Screen viewing, the Full Screen reached by pressing F11 gets rid of some of the Title bar, toolbars and maybe status bar at the bottom and hides the Taskbar, gives more room to a program.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win11 Pro RTM
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Vostro 3400
    CPU
    Intel Core i5 11th Gen. 2.40GHz
    Memory
    12GB
    Hard Drives
    256GB SSD NVMe
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro RTM x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Vostro 5890
    CPU
    Intel Core i5 10th Gen. 2.90GHz
    Memory
    16GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Onboard, no VGA, using a DisplayPort-to-VGA adapter
    Monitor(s) Displays
    24" Dell
    Hard Drives
    512GB SSD NVMe, 2TB WDC HDD
    Browser
    Firefox, Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender/Microsoft Security
There are plenty of free remote tools. However your IT admins will most likely not approve the installation of them on your work laptop as that is a huge security risk.

Instead, use windows accessibility options to increase the size of text and make things more legible.


Remote desktop is great, but not much left that support windows 7. And despite what you claim, no extension or anything will save you on windows 7 browsing the web. Please find an older modern pc for cheap on craigslist, facebook marketplace, or ebay.

You can find some nice intel 8th gen systems that support windows 11 for super cheap and run quite well.

With a modern system, you can use remote desktop without issue and be more secure on the web.



Also, it might be worth considering plugging your work laptop into your TV using HDMI cable for a nice larger screen to use.
 
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My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell G15 5525
    CPU
    Ryzen 7 6800H
    Memory
    32 GB DDR5 4800mhz
    Graphics Card(s)
    RTX 3050 Mobile 4GB Vram
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Gigabyte M27Q (rev. 2.0) 2560 x 1440 @ 170hz HDR
    Screen Resolution
    Internal laptop screen: 1920 x 1080 @ 120hz
    Hard Drives
    2TB Solidigm™ P41 Plus nvme
    Internet Speed
    800mbps down, 20 up
  • Operating System
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Tablet
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ideapad flex 14API 2 in 1
    CPU
    Ryzen 5 3500u
    Motherboard
    LENOVO LNVNB161216 (FP5)
    Memory
    12GB DDR4
    Graphics card(s)
    AMD Radeon Vega 8 Graphics
    Hard Drives
    256 GB Samsung ssd nvme
I have no idea whether this will still work with Windows 7 or not, but let's assume for the moment that is does (I will leave it to others to verify that this really works)...

Remote desktop actually uses a whole separate display driver. It can display at the natiuve resolution of whatever monitor you are currently using.

As an example, I have a very small laptop with an 11-inch display that runs at only 1366 x 768. However, if I establ;ish a remote desktop session to that laptop from a system with a 4K display (3840 x 2160) that system will be displayed to me at the 3840 x 2160 resolution.

Note that you do not HAVE TO use that resolution, you can choose lower resolutions and to display the remote system within a window rather than full screen if you prefer.

It is for this very reason that I often use Remote Desktop to manage some of my low-end systems. I can use my nice desktop monitor, keyboard, and mouse to manage those systems and gain the benefits associated with that.

At this point you simply need verification that this does indeed work with Windows 7. If you get no good answer to that, my suggestion would be to simply install Win 11 Pro on a VM without activating it, just for testing purposes. This way you verify operation from that VM.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win11 Pro 24H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Kamrui Mini PC, Model CK10
    CPU
    Intel i5-12450H
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    No GPU - Built-in Intel Graphics
    Sound Card
    Integrated
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP Envy 32
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    1 x 2TB NVMe SSD
    1 x 4TB NVMe SSD
    1 x 4TB 2.5" SSD
    PSU
    120W "Brick"
    Keyboard
    Corsair K70 Mechanical Keyboard
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1 Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
  • Operating System
    Win11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkBook 13x Gen 2
    CPU
    Intel i7-1255U
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel Iris Xe Graphics
    Sound Card
    Realtek® ALC3306-CG codec
    Monitor(s) Displays
    13.3-inch IPS Display
    Screen Resolution
    WQXGA (2560 x 1600)
    Hard Drives
    2 TB 4 x 4 NVMe SSD
    PSU
    USB-C / Thunderbolt 4 Power / Charging
    Mouse
    Buttonless Glass Precision Touchpad
    Keyboard
    Backlit, spill resistant keyboard
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    WiFi 6e / Bluetooth 5.1 / Facial Recognition / Fingerprint Sensor / ToF (Time of Flight) Human Presence Sensor
There are plenty of free remote tools. However your IT admins will most likely not approve the installation of them on your work laptop as that is a huge security risk.
we actually don't have IT admins. It's just a corporate software app. And it's overall pretty dumb. But I personally wouldn't want to install anything risky. I will google free remote tools and see options.


I've fiddled a bit. Helps a little but often the page elements don't render correctly. or mixed font sizes on different elements that respond to the adjustment. that's worse. I just zoom in (control-wheel) constantly to read and zoom out to get my real estate back to navigate. Its okay once in a while but not a lot.

Remote desktop is great, but not much left that support windows 7.
I thought of a Remote Desktop experiment I can try. I do have a personal W10-Pro laptop that I barely use. I can try Remote Desktop to my W7 just to see if W7 will play with W10. If it does, that gives me confidence that W11 will probably be ok too.

And despite what you claim, no extension or anything will save you on windows 7 browsing the web. Please find an older modern pc for cheap on craigslist, facebook marketplace, or ebay.
I purchased a W10 laptop a few years ago to wean me off of W7, but hated the laptop. And much of my W7 installed software is no longer available or migratable or configurable. And not worth the effort for seldom used things. And 15 years of remembered history, bookmarks, etc etc etc. is hard to give up. (altho it could be also easily called clutter LOL). I have AVAST running. I have never (knock wood) in 30 years in this biz had a malware incident.

You can find some nice intel 8th gen systems that support windows 11 for super cheap.

With a modern system, you can use remote desktop without issue and be more secure on the web.



Also, it might be worth considering plugging your work laptop into your TV using HDMI cable for a nice larger screen to use.
TV good idea, but not practical logistics keyboard/mouse add-on (we older folk can't give up keyboard/mouse). Plus, my TV is only 38". When watching shows where they are texting, I have to hit Pause and get up and stand in front of TV. Do you know how many shows now feature texting?!?!? Most of em!! arggggghhhhh

A new 27" monitor will get the job done (on boss's dime). I was just looking to avoid clogging up the DR table.

Thanks for your inputs.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenova/Ideapad
...simply install Win 11 Pro on a VM without activating it, just for testing purposes. This way you verify operation from that VM.
Not sure I would know how to do that, but sounds like a path!
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenova/Ideapad
Not sure I would know how to do that, but sounds like a path!
LOL, no worries. I wasn't certain if that was in your comfort zone or not, but thought it worthwhile to suggest.

Hopefully someone who has actually tried that can tell you for sure, although I'm not sure how many persons here are still using Win 7 anywhere.

It might be worthwhile posting your question on www.sevenforums.com where you know for sure you have Windows 7 users :-)
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win11 Pro 24H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Kamrui Mini PC, Model CK10
    CPU
    Intel i5-12450H
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    No GPU - Built-in Intel Graphics
    Sound Card
    Integrated
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP Envy 32
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    1 x 2TB NVMe SSD
    1 x 4TB NVMe SSD
    1 x 4TB 2.5" SSD
    PSU
    120W "Brick"
    Keyboard
    Corsair K70 Mechanical Keyboard
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1 Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
  • Operating System
    Win11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkBook 13x Gen 2
    CPU
    Intel i7-1255U
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel Iris Xe Graphics
    Sound Card
    Realtek® ALC3306-CG codec
    Monitor(s) Displays
    13.3-inch IPS Display
    Screen Resolution
    WQXGA (2560 x 1600)
    Hard Drives
    2 TB 4 x 4 NVMe SSD
    PSU
    USB-C / Thunderbolt 4 Power / Charging
    Mouse
    Buttonless Glass Precision Touchpad
    Keyboard
    Backlit, spill resistant keyboard
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    WiFi 6e / Bluetooth 5.1 / Facial Recognition / Fingerprint Sensor / ToF (Time of Flight) Human Presence Sensor
Hi, hershey4, welcome to the ElevenForums 🙏

Microsofts Remote Desktop. Available on 7/10/11 (And it’s free)
Open remote desktop on windows 11, Settings > System > Remote Desktop Toggle to on, add user.
Connect from 7
Get an external monitor, make boss pay, make it expensive. Make sure it can do everything including washing your dishes $$$
External Keyboard/Mouse/Swimming pool. If you get a wireless Key/Mouse, you can remove it from your desk when you need more realestate on it. (Get a bigger desk? Boss can pay $$$, need more room for the desk? Boss can pay for an extension to your office $$$$$$$. Go Boss!)

You may have to watch a video to use it for the first time. I found one but was a bit hard to understand the host talking.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 Build: 22631.3880
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Sin-built
    CPU
    Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-4770K CPU @ 3.50GHz (4th Gen?)
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus VI Formula
    Memory
    32.0 GB of I forget and the box is in storage.
    Graphics Card(s)
    Gigabyte nVidia GeForce GTX 1660 Super OC 6GB
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    4 x LG 23MP75 1 x 24" LG M38H 1 x 32" LF6300 TV Monitor 1 x Wacom Pro 22" Tablet
    Screen Resolution
    All over the place
    Hard Drives
    2 x WD something Something 8TB HDD's / 2 x WD something Something 4TB HDD's / 1 x EVO 1TB SSD / 2 x QVO 1TB SSD's / 1 x EVO 250 GB SSD / 2 x QVO 1TB (External Hub) / 1 x EVO 1TB (Portable Backup Case)
    PSU
    Silverstone 1500
    Case
    NZXT Phantom 820 Full-Tower Case
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15 Elite Class Dual Tower CPU Cooler / 6 x EziDIY 120mm / 2 x Corsair 140mm somethings / 1 x 140mm Thermaltake something / 2 x 200mm Corsair.
    Keyboard
    Corsair K95 / Logitech diNovo Edge Wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech G402 / G502 / Mx Masters / MX Air Cordless
    Internet Speed
    100/40Mbps
    Browser
    All sorts
    Antivirus
    Kaspersky Premium
    Other Info
    I’m on a horse.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro 22621.2215
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    LENOVO Yoga 7i EVO OLED 14" Touchscreen i5 12 Core 16GB/512GB
    CPU
    Intel Core 12th Gen i5-1240P Processor (1.7 - 4.4GHz)
    Memory
    16GB LPDDR5 RAM
    Graphics card(s)
    Graphics processor is an Intel Iris Xe
    Sound Card
    optimized with Dolby Atmos®
    Screen Resolution
    QHD 2880 x 1800 OLED
    Hard Drives
    M.2 512GB
    Other Info
    …still on a horse.
Solved! Chrome Remote Desktop to the rescue. Easy Peasy (so far anyhow). Laptop browser is now a tab in my W7 browser so it can't maximize its screen, but it's a HUGE improvement from 15" laptop real estate. Currently am using my W7 21" monitor. 27" monitor coming soon. which should help even more!! And I won't have to put it on DR table! I will just swap out my personal monitor with my new work monitor and good to go! (BTW, I picked out cheapest that would do the job. I know boss cheap. $129 on sale for 1080p I thought was great deal. Monitors are pretty simple. I hope it has the right ports for my W7 cpu though. If not, I'm sure there's a VGA/HDMI adapter)

I often like to split my screen so I can have one app on one side and some related data on the other side. I probably won't need two instances of the laptop at once. It will be interesting to see if I can. Probably one half window can be remote browser tab and the other half window can be some local PDF or whatever. What was kinda cool was when I did "Windows<--" it showed multiple windows Windows 11 style rather than W7 style.

And compliance software ran at login on corporate portal and didn't detect anything wrong. I wonder how the 15 minute idle timeout mandate will work in this setup. Many details to be discovered...

Thanks so much to Andrew. Your suggestion about free remote software tools changes my world! Who knew!?!?!
 
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My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenova/Ideapad
I love this guy, he’s weird.

Watch this, take note of the first few minutes regarding persistent remote access using Chrome Remote Desktop

 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 Build: 22631.3880
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Sin-built
    CPU
    Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-4770K CPU @ 3.50GHz (4th Gen?)
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus VI Formula
    Memory
    32.0 GB of I forget and the box is in storage.
    Graphics Card(s)
    Gigabyte nVidia GeForce GTX 1660 Super OC 6GB
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    4 x LG 23MP75 1 x 24" LG M38H 1 x 32" LF6300 TV Monitor 1 x Wacom Pro 22" Tablet
    Screen Resolution
    All over the place
    Hard Drives
    2 x WD something Something 8TB HDD's / 2 x WD something Something 4TB HDD's / 1 x EVO 1TB SSD / 2 x QVO 1TB SSD's / 1 x EVO 250 GB SSD / 2 x QVO 1TB (External Hub) / 1 x EVO 1TB (Portable Backup Case)
    PSU
    Silverstone 1500
    Case
    NZXT Phantom 820 Full-Tower Case
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15 Elite Class Dual Tower CPU Cooler / 6 x EziDIY 120mm / 2 x Corsair 140mm somethings / 1 x 140mm Thermaltake something / 2 x 200mm Corsair.
    Keyboard
    Corsair K95 / Logitech diNovo Edge Wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech G402 / G502 / Mx Masters / MX Air Cordless
    Internet Speed
    100/40Mbps
    Browser
    All sorts
    Antivirus
    Kaspersky Premium
    Other Info
    I’m on a horse.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro 22621.2215
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    LENOVO Yoga 7i EVO OLED 14" Touchscreen i5 12 Core 16GB/512GB
    CPU
    Intel Core 12th Gen i5-1240P Processor (1.7 - 4.4GHz)
    Memory
    16GB LPDDR5 RAM
    Graphics card(s)
    Graphics processor is an Intel Iris Xe
    Sound Card
    optimized with Dolby Atmos®
    Screen Resolution
    QHD 2880 x 1800 OLED
    Hard Drives
    M.2 512GB
    Other Info
    …still on a horse.
Helpful video... that explains a few beginning missteps I made getting it started. I did want and get persistent access, but I will come back to this to see more details. He's thorough.

The remote laptop icon is greyed out now. I think laptop is asleep. I hope when I wake up laptop tomorrow the connection persists on my desktop. I am also intrigued by the side option panel he showed.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenova/Ideapad
Update: Solution even better! That video showed how to access more options so I can go full screen remote and W11 not just be a tab in a browser. Woo-hoo! I don't even need the 27" monitor. hmmm..... will I return it though? Maybe I'll test out the 21" in real work scenarios before I decide. ;-)
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenova/Ideapad
Solved! Chrome Remote Desktop to the rescue.

Thanks so much to Andrew. Your suggestion about free remote software tools changes my world! Who knew!?!?!
Ironically I was going to suggest google remote desktop but I got busy with stuff so didn't post again until now.

I use it myself and quite like it. It works very well.

I am surprised it works on windows 7. Nice

Ensure you have 2fa set up on your google account.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell G15 5525
    CPU
    Ryzen 7 6800H
    Memory
    32 GB DDR5 4800mhz
    Graphics Card(s)
    RTX 3050 Mobile 4GB Vram
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Gigabyte M27Q (rev. 2.0) 2560 x 1440 @ 170hz HDR
    Screen Resolution
    Internal laptop screen: 1920 x 1080 @ 120hz
    Hard Drives
    2TB Solidigm™ P41 Plus nvme
    Internet Speed
    800mbps down, 20 up
  • Operating System
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Tablet
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ideapad flex 14API 2 in 1
    CPU
    Ryzen 5 3500u
    Motherboard
    LENOVO LNVNB161216 (FP5)
    Memory
    12GB DDR4
    Graphics card(s)
    AMD Radeon Vega 8 Graphics
    Hard Drives
    256 GB Samsung ssd nvme

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