I've got users using RDP to connect to a Windows 2008 with Windows Server 2008's Terminal Server Application mode. (Users RDP in and get an app that looks like it's running locally.)

It works great. But our guys need to be able to run multiple instances of the app locally. I can manage to seperate the users and handle everything on the Windows 2008 Terminal Server side - but I've got one major issue.

On the Windows clients (that are running RDP to connect) - I can't run more than one session of tsclient (the Remote Desktop sofware.) I've tried duplicating the shortcuts that the users use to launch the session, I've tried renaming the server (using hostname in one shortcut and IP address in another), but no matter what I do, it keeps focusing the already existing RDP session rather than creating a new one. However, if I don't use a shortcut, I can have two RDP sessions going at once (haven't tried connecting to the same server yet.)

How can I tell Remote Desktop to open a new session rather than reusing the old one?


  • asked here, too - superuser.com/questions/62178/…
    – warren
    Commented Nov 3, 2009 at 15:55
  • Does the program support multiple instances when loaded on a local desktop and not TS?
    – Joseph
    Commented Nov 4, 2009 at 5:59

5 Answers 5


RDP allows only one connection per account: each user has ONE desktop, and it can't be shared among multiple connections.

If he needs to launch several applications, you should delete the "launch application" from the shortcut's properties: that will allow him to see the desktop. There he can launch multiple applications as if he's using his desktop computer.


  • Connection per account on the local or remote computer? Commented Nov 10, 2009 at 18:05
  • Yep. Different accounts can connect simultaneously :)
    – kolypto
    Commented Nov 10, 2009 at 19:00

Do you have your TS server(s) set to restrict users to a single session, either on the TS itself or via GPO?

  • Not that I know of. Commented Oct 30, 2009 at 6:05
  • 1
    I would double check to make sure.
    – joeqwerty
    Commented Oct 30, 2009 at 11:07
  • Given that that setting is server side and the launch of the application is client-side , I don't believe that it's relevant. Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 21:57
  • 3
    Not true. A remote app is spawned in a TS session just like a full desktop would, it's just not apparent to the user because the app runs "windowed" on the client machine. If you launch a remote app and look in TS Manager on the server you'll see a user session for the user running the remote app.
    – joeqwerty
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 23:47
  • My apologies. After doing some testing it appears that only a single TS session is spawned per user regardless of how many Remote Apps are launched.
    – joeqwerty
    Commented Nov 4, 2009 at 1:21

Did you try to 'runas' tsclient with different credentials? Trick works with some apps which allow single instance only...

Did you try 'remote desktops' plugin of mmc? There should be a slight difference...


I ran into a similar problem when I tried to start two RemoteApp sessions on the same server. The RDP client just started a new instance of the application within the same sessions. To force the RDP client to ask for the login credentials the second time I had to add this to the .rdp file:

prompt for credentials:i:1


I take it that Citrix XenApp is not an option?

  • This does not appear to answer the question. First, it's a question, itself (not an answer), and second, it doesn't address OP's need, which is achieving a particular workflow using the Windows Remote Desktop Protocol.
    – TylerH
    Commented Mar 8, 2023 at 14:47

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