Secure RDP

Posted by Garth on Friday, August 31, 2007

I was sitting around last night thinking to myself that I really don't like port 3389 forwarded directly to my PC at home. In a perfect world I'd have a nice SSL VPN appliance sitting behind my firewall, but this world is less than perfect and I don't have the resources (i.e. $$) to throw away on such a device. So I turned to google in hopes of finding some way to secure RDP (Remote Desktop / Terminal Services). Lo and behold, what should I find, but these phenomenally detailed instructions including pretty pictures. Easy as pie to set up and it works like a charm. For some reason though, Vista gives me an error when I try to use localhost:3390, but other ports seem to work fine. Who'd've thunk that SSH has a use outside of the Unix realm? The really great thing about it is that you only need to install copSSH on one PC (the one that your firewall forwards port 22 to), and it handles the tunneling to any other machine on your network. Sweet, sweet candy.

Alan W. Jarvi, if you're reading this, thank you. I tried finding your email address so that I could send you a personal thanks, but even google turned up short there.

And a note for you guys behind bank firewalls and the like... this might actually allow you to get through them, especially if you map your SSH port on your home network to 80 or 443. Still might not work if they're using packet inspection or application level restrictions, but if it's just standard port allow/deny it just might do the trick.


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