By Ellie / Last Updated April 19, 2022

Remote Desktop SSH tunnel

"I use RDP to get a connection to a remote server. Recently, I was told that I can remote into another computer with a higher level of security by tunneling RDP over SSH with PuTTY. As I always deal with sensitive and important information, I wanna give it a try. But I don’t know how to do it, can anyone tell me?"

Brief introduction of SSH tunnel

Tunneling is also referred to as "port forwarding". SSH port forwarding establishes a secure connection between a local computer and a distant computer. Typically, there are three types of port forwarding with SSH:

  • Local port forwarding. Connections from the SSH client are routed through the SSH server and then to the destination server. This allows you to connect to another server from your local computer. For example, you may can local port forwarding to connect to your client while avoiding a workplace firewall.
  • Remote port forwarding. Connections from the SSH client are routed through the SSH server and then to the destination server. This allows you to connect to another server from your local computer. For example, you may use local port forwarding to connect to your client while avoiding a workplace firewall.
  • Dynamic port forwarding. Connections from various programs are routed through the SSH client, then the SSH server, and lastly to a number of target servers. Each program that uses the proxy server must be configured separately and reconfigured when the proxy server is no longer in use. For example, dynamic port forwarding allows you to circumvent a corporate firewall that prevents all web access.

Of which, local port forwarding is the most used type of port forwarding.

How to create a Remote Desktop SSH tunnel using PuTTY on Windows 10

Here in this post, we’ll show you how to create a Remote Desktop SSH tunnel using PuTTY on Windows 10.

Step 1. Download PuTTY.

Step 2. Open the Downloads folder, find and open PuTTY you’ve downloaded.

Download PuTTY

Step 3. On the left pane, navigate here: Connection > SSH > Tunnels.

PuTTY SSH Tunnels

Step 4. Add your local IP address and port to the Source port. For example, here we use TCP port 3388 on IP address 127.0.0.2, and the remote internal IP address and RDP port 3389 as Destination (192.168.48.211:3389). Then click Add.

Add Source Port

Step 5. Then you can see the forwarded ports shown here. This means the SSH tunnel for Remote Desktop is active.

Forwarded Ports

Step 6. Then you can connect the Remote Desktop Connection to 127.0.0.2:3388.

Remote Connection Port Forwarding

AnyViewer: safe remote desktop software

If you want to remote into another computer more safely, you can use the free and secure remote desktop software AnyViewer. It adopts the ECC (Elliptic Curve Cryptography) algorithm, which is a powerful cryptography approach, generating security between key pairs for public-key encryption by using the mathematics of elliptic curves.

Download AnyViewer, install and launch it on both the remote computer and the local computer and see how it works.

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

 Step 1. Download, install and launch AnyViewer on both computers. Go to Log in, and then click Sign up. (If you already have signed up on its official website, you can log in directly.)

Log in AnyViewer

Step 2. Fill in the signup information.

Sign Up for AnyViewer

Step 3. Then you can see you successfully logged in to AnyViewer. Your device will automatically be assigned to the account you've logged in to.

Free Editions

Step 4. Log in to the same AnyViewer account on the two devices, then you can achieve a direct connection by clicking Remote control.

Connect to My Devices

Note: You can also upgrade your account to Professional or Enterprise edition to assign more devices and to connect to another computer in privacy mode.

Conclusion

Creating a Remote Desktop SSH tunnel using PuTTY on Windows 10 is certainly a safer way to remote into another computer. Of course, you can also use AnyViewer, the free and secure remote desktop software, to achieve this in a simpler way.