Remote Desktop Connection (RCD) or KVM Extender?

rdc or kvm extender

If you are looking for a solution to access your computer remotely, you may be interested in KVM extenders, or remote desktop services like Microsoft RDC (Remote Desktop Connection). Which is better? It depends. By learning the pros and cons, you can make a quick decision.

KVM extender & RDC

KVM extender is hardware. It enables users to extend the computer’s video and USB data over a long distance. Over there, a display, keyboard, and mouse (KVM) can be connected and used to control the computer remotely. 

RDC is short for Remote Desktop Connection, a software tool offered by Microsoft. Using RDC, you can remotely access Windows computers over the same network.

What are the differences between a KVM extender and an RDC service? Can RDC replace a KVM extender to control a remote computer? You are going to learn a bit more about both of them and will understand how they are used differently.

KVM extender: a wired solution

As a hardware-based solution, a KVM extender consists of a transmitter(Tx) and a receiver(Rx). The transmitter will be connected to the computer, and the receiver will be connected to a display, keyboard, and mouse. The Tx and Rx are linked via a cable. (IP KVM extenders may be connected to a network switch).

Therefore, the KVM extender solution is a wired option. There is a physical connection going from the computer to the operator. This solution would be out of consideration if you are seeking to control a computer from another city – the transmission length is limited.

A KVM extender does not require a computing device to control your computer. As a direct physical connection is built, a set of KVM would be enough.


RDC: software tool by Microsoft

RDC (Remote Desktop Connection) is a software tool by Microsoft and it is built into the Windows system for remote access to the computer. If you enable this feature on your computer, you will be able to control it via the application Microsoft remote desktop from a remote computer, tablet, or cellphone.

The connection is totally network-based. Your devices shall be connected in one LAN, or such a connection is done via recognizing the IP address of the computer. In this sense, you can access the computer wherever you are as long as the network is on. 

You may be interested: How to Use Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Connection

Pros and Cons

Listed below are the benefits of using a KVM extender. In reverse, they are also could be the shortcomings of the RDC solution.


KVM extenders are hardware-based. As long as they are powered, they will work it out for you. RDC and other network-based solutions will rely on the Internet and the connection will fail if the network is unstable.


A hardware-based solution is basically more secure than a network-based one. You will have full control over the system “your computer – KVM extender – the remote console” and no hackers can break into it.


Via RDC, you can only control Windows systems from a device with the application installed. KVM extenders are more flexible. You can control your PS5 and Xbox with the extended gamepad, or your AVR with a remote keyboard and mouse.

If you have multiple computers and consoles to control them, AV over IP could be an even more powerful option. The only limit of KVM extenders is that in order to get the installation done, distance always counts. Therefore, KVM extenders are widely used in institutions, colleges, office buildings, or family houses.

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