How to change the default RDP port on Windows

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The Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) is a highly useful tool for remotely connecting to your computer. By default, the RDP server listens on TCP port 3389. However, leaving RDP on its default port poses a potential security risk as attackers often target known service ports. This article will guide you through the process of changing the default RDP port to enhance your system's security.

Before you begin, please note that changing the RDP port requires editing the Windows Registry, which is a powerful tool that keeps the configuration for all the programs on your computer. Be careful while making changes to the Registry, as incorrect modifications can cause your system to malfunction.

Do not change the default RDP port if your Virtual Desktop doesn't have a Public IP address as this would lead your RDP service being unreachable.

Step 1: Open the Registry Editor

Press the Windows + R keys to open the Run dialog box. Type regedit and click OK to open the Registry Editor.

Step 2: Navigate to the RDP Port Configuration

In the Registry Editor, navigate to the following key:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\WinStations\RDP-Tcp\

Look for the PortNumber DWORD value in the right pane.

Step 3: Modify the Port Number

Right-click on PortNumber and select Modify. In the dialog box that opens, select Decimal under Base. You can now enter your new RDP port number in the Value data field. Ensure it's an unused port number between 1025 and 49151.

Step 4: Close and Restart

After entering the new port number, click OK and close the Registry Editor. You will need to restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

Step 5: Update your Firewall

Don't forget to update your firewall settings to allow connections through the new RDP port.

Final thoughts 

Remember, changing the RDP port will increase your security, but it's not a standalone solution. It should be part of a broader security strategy, which includes regular system updates, strong, unique passwords, and limiting the number of users who have access to RDP.

Always remember to exercise caution when making changes to the Windows Registry. If you're not confident in making these changes yourself, seek help from an IT professional.

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