How do you open two or more simultaneous sessions of Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection in Lion? The RDC client comes with Office for Mac 2011. I work on a MacBook Pro but have to remote into Windows servers for a number of reasons.

3 Answers 3


Microsoft's Remote Desktop Client has two very interesting (and very un-mac like) designs:

  1. Invoking the app a second time simply raises the connection in process. You've no doubt tried to launch a "second instance" of the app this way, and been annoyed that it doesn't work. Don't worry, you're not alone, that's un-expected behavior.

  2. As you see from my screenshot, it's as simple as File -> New Connection

Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection File Menu

However, don't try and use the n shortcut. If you're connected to a remote computer then shortcuts no longer work, and in fact, shortcuts are actually completely unbound after you connect to something. That's invariably due to the fact that because most keyboard shortcuts get sent through to the remote computer.

So, File -> New Connection. A new icon will appear in your Dock, and you will be prompted for the remote host address. One advantage to this 'un-mac like' convention is that it's simple to switch between remote hosts with one icon per connection in your Dock.

  • 1
    Jason -- Thanks for the thorough explanation. Following your guidance, I am able to use RDC to remote into more than one of my servers at a time. Boom!
    – tlatkovich
    Feb 2, 2012 at 19:47

Check out the CoRD app. I use it for my RDP connections and it works great. Not as good as mRemote for Windows, but it'll do the job.

  • 1
    I second CoRd, I use it when I'm working from home all the time. Much better than the RDC client from MS
    – Stu Wilson
    Jan 31, 2012 at 21:19

I think rdesktop is the only workaround.

You need to switch to the "other" Microsoft RDP client application, identically named however it has a different icon (Incorrect one is v8.0.18, correct is one is v2.1.1. Typical dogs breakfast approach from Microsoft).

It can only ever have one instance, and one connection which is just retarded.

Also Cord doesn't support Windows NLA so thats not suitable either (CoRD_0.5.7)

  • v8 has no problems whatsoever making multiple simultaneous connections. You should have binned v2 & its separate connection files years ago - that might be your conflict.
    – Tetsujin
    Jul 24, 2015 at 6:05

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