[Solved] RDP local network only - How to RDP Over Internet

Can I change RDP local network only limitation? Yes! This post will introduce how to remotely access another device using RDP outside the network. Let’s start reading to get the tips!


By Hester / Updated on February 14, 2023

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RDP local network only: How do I access RDP outside my network?


Hello, I've recently been traveling back and forth from home and I need to be able to do work on my computer remotely. I want to use Remote Desktop but what I can do is RDP local network only. How can I access RDP outside my network? Thanks for your help.”

- Question from Windows Forum

Remote Work

How to use Remote Desktop over the Internet [2 ways]

By default, RDP only functions on the local network. To access Remote Desktop over the Internet, you need to configure RDP port forwarding or set up a VPN. Keep reading to learn how to use Remote Desktop to connect to another computer over the Internet.


Way 1. Configure RDP port forwarding

When you can’t connect to Remote Desktop from outside network, you can forward RDP port on your router.

✍️Before you start: Routers offer web-based control panels that can be accessed by opening a web browser and entering the router's IP address. If you don't know the login details, go to check your router's user manual.

Router Login

Step 1. Open a web browser, type in your router address, and press Enter.

Login Router Address

Step 2. Input the information and click Login.

Router Login

Step 3. When you logged in, go to Port Forwarding/Port Triggering section, and click Add Custom Service.

Add Custom Service

Step 4. Then enter a name for the service, select "TCP/UDP" or "Both" under Service Type, type in the RDP port number (default 3389), and enter the IP address.

Set Up Port Mapping

Step 5. Click Apply to save the settings and, if necessary, restart the router. Then you can establish an RDP connection over the Internet.

Way 2. Set up a VPN

If you set up a VPN, you can access RDP outside the network with the VPN connection.

✍️Before you start, make sure you know the required information as follows:

  • The VPN server's name or address.
  • The type of VPN protocol (SSTP, L2TP/IPSec, OpenVPN, PPTP, or IKEv2).
  • Login details, such as a username and password.

Step 1. Navigate here: Settings > Network & Internet > VPN, and then click Add a VPN connection.

Open Windows VPN Service

Step 2. Fill in the required information and then click Save.

Add a VPN Connection Information

Bonus tip: Two easier ways to remote access computer over the Internet

To change the “RDP local network only” limitation, you can also switch to other RDP alternatives that support over-Internet connections without extra settings.

Way 1. Use professional remote desktop software AnyViewer [comprehensive features]

If you need to frequently use a remote desktop program for work purposes, we recommend you use the all-in-one remote desktop solution AnyViewer. It has comprehensive features, for example, unattended remote access, direct file transfer, simultaneous multiple sessions, multiple monitors, etc.

Besides, it offers several considerate options in a remote session to improve your work efficiency, for example, instant chat.

Download AnyViewer on your devices and you can easily set it up with the following steps:

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7
Secure Download

Step 1. Start up AnyViewer on host computer, and click Sign up for account registration.

Log in AnyViewer

Step 2. Complete the information and click Sign up.

Sign Up for AnyViewer

Step 3. Start up AnyViewer on client computer, log in to the same account, and your device will be automaticallyassigned to the account.

Free Editions

Step 4. Go to Device, select your home computer from the list, and click One-click control to start a remote session with that device.

Connect to My Devices

Now you can see and take control of the host computer.

Remote Access Operations

Note that AnyViewer also has an iOS and Android app, you can access remote computer from mobile devices in different network environments.

Unattended Remote Control iOS

Notes:✎...You can upgrade to Professional or Enterprise plan to enjoy more rights!

Way 2. Use web-based program Chrome Remote Desktop [limited features]

If you have an installed Google browser and an available Google account, you can conveniently use the Google Chrome Remote Desktop extension to access your computer over the Internet. The downside is that Chrome Remote Desktop has limited features. It only allows remote control and remote support, which means you can not directly transfer files or take on other tasks in the session. It also does not support instant chat.

Step 1. On your computers, open Google Chrome and sign in to the same Google account.

Sign in Google Account

Step 2. Locate Chrome Remote Desktop from Google extensions and click Add to Chrome.

Add to Chrome

Step 3. When added, click Remote Access from the left, and click the blue download button.

Set Up Remote Access

Step 4. Click Accept & Install.

Ready to Install

Step 5. Enter a computer name and click Next.

Choose Name

Step 6. Enter and re-enter a PIN code, then click Start.

Choose a PIN

Step 7. Then you can see the available devices. On the client computer, click the devices you want to connect to.

Remote Devices

Step 8. Enter the PIN code of the host computer, and click the blue arrow to start the remote session.

Enter the Set Up PIN


This post introduced how to change the “RDP local network only” limitation. Port forwarding and VPN allows you to RDP into another device outside the network. Besides, there are two easier ways to establish a remote connection over the Internet without extra settings: AnyViewer and Chrome Remote Desktop. Choose the one that fits your demands most. If you need an all-in-one solution, AnyViewer is the best.