Home » Questions » Computers [ Ask a new question ]

What exactly is the console session in RDP?

What exactly is the console session in RDP?

I can't get a good definition of the difference between a normal RDP session and the /console (/admin in Windows 2008 and later) session.

Asked by: Guest | Views: 54
Total answers/comments: 2
Guest [Entry]

"The console session is what you see when you look at a monitor that’s plugged into the server. Normally with RDP you get your own session that is not the same as what’s shown on the server’s own monitor.

A typical example might be a backup application that is running on the console. You don’t want to log into a new session and start a second copy of the backup application; you want to monitor the backup application running in the console session."
Guest [Entry]

"Think of the console as the monitor, keyboard and mouse physically connected to the server. If you connect to the console you are effectively looking over the shoulder of whoever logged in at the keyboard connected to the server. You're seeing their logged in session, with whatever applications they are running. You will see their desktop and start menu.

If you log in via a normal RDP session it's as if you logged into the server. You will get the desktop, and start menu for your profile.

Often the desktop and start menu you see for the console is similar to the desktop and start menu you see when you log in. But they don't have to be identical. On one server I RDP into I see a totally different desktop if I connect to a console session or connect via a normal RDP session.

The desktop difference is pretty much cosmetic. The big difference is the services and applications that are running when you connect to the console versus connecting via a normal RDP session - you may have different applications in your Startup folder or different services starting up automatically."