Staff Remote Desktop

For quick access: click the button below and choose to "open" the connection file. This uses defaults suitable for most users and is optimised for high latency (mobile, home broadband).

If your network does not allow Remote Desktop (RDP) traffic, such as an NHS network, you can connect using the UOB-Gateway which uses a web connection (SSL).

Please note: If you require full graphics and multi monitor support, simply connect manually using the instructions on the Setting up your connection tab.
  • This service allows you to access the University from any computer with an Internet connection.
  • This system provides you with a full desktop, which works in exactly the same way as if you were sat at a computer on Campus. 
  • All your Home Drive and shared files and the common administrative desktop applications you use in University can be accessed and worked on.
  • You can save directly back to your University storage, ready for the next time you are on site.  As part of this service your University wide home folder space (MyFiles - o:\) is available, which holds your Internet favourites and settings, My Documents folders etc. 
  •  You can also print to your local printer or to University printers.
  • You can also use this system from your own laptop on campus, using the University wireless network.
  • You can access the service from the University portal My Bristol, under the Technology tab. 

Please note:  When accessing information via the remote desktop please refer to the Information Security policies in regard to the transfer of University information.  If you are accessing the remote desktop from a publically accessible computer please ensure you disconnect from the service once you have finished.

Check that you have the free Remote Desktop Connection software

Saving your connection

 If you want to save a connection to your personal PC as a desktop icon then choose either the "fast" or "slow" connection, (depending on the speed of your Internet connection) and save the file when prompted.  Next time you want to connect to the service, just double click on the saved desktop icon.


If you are using Internet Explorer then you can either "Open" the connection file to connect, or save the file to your computer for an easy way to connect in the future.

This window may appear differently in other browsers; in Firefox, you should choose to open the file and just click on "OK" - there is no need to browse to choose a program to open the file with.

On Apple systems, where Remote Desktop is loaded, Safari will automatically download the connection file and you can open it from your downloads list or through Finder.

Manually setting your connection

If you prefer, you can also manually load the Remote Desktop Connection software on your PC and enter our address to connect. Type the address below into the long white box labelled “Computer”, including the full stops. Click the “Connect” button to begin.

 If you connect to the service this way then you may not see your local drives or printers, depending on the options that are set on your computer. If you need access to your local drives, memory sticks or printers then click on "Options", "Local Resources" and ensure that "Printers, Clipboard, Drives and PnP devices" are all ticked before you connect.

staff desktop - MSTSC connection window

It is possible to connect from Android, Linux, iPad and iPhone systems.

iOS (iPhone and iPad)

You will need to download an application to make Remote Desktop connections from either device. We have tested and recommend the free Microsoft Remote Desktop for iPhone or iPad, which is able to connect to the service and works acceptably. Install this application in the usual way and then enter "" as the connection address. This is then saved and available as a one click link for future use. You will not see local iPhone or iPad storage on the Student Desktop systems when connecting in this way.

Mac OSX Connections

Make sure you are using the latest Microsoft Remote Desktop client from the OSX App Store - then you can setup a connection from scratch in the following way:

If you have an unsupported old version of OSX, make sure you are using at least the 2.1.1 version of the Remote Desktop client, available here


1) Open the Microsoft Remote Desktop app

2) Click on "New" and fill in the details as below with "".   Your username should use the format UOB\yourusername

3) Close the window and you will now have a connection saved that will appear every time you open the Application.

4) Click start to connect.


How this will appear depends on which Operating System you use on your personal computer.

  • Windows: Enter your UOB username and password in the format UOB\username, e.g. UOB\ab1234

  • In Windows 7, Vista and OS X you will see a small box appear asking for your username and password.

    In Windows XP you will normally see a login screen, as you do on Campus office computers.

  • Mac OS X: This may depend on your client software.  The username and password will either be in the format UOB\ab1234 if you are using the newest Microsoft client or may be in the form username@UOB, e.g. ab1234@UOB if you have an older Remote Desktop Client

  • On some Apple systems you will see a "Domain" box.  If you are using a username in the format UOB or @UOB then this box *should be blank* (i.e. contain no text) or you may see an error.

Your password is your main UOB password that you use for systems and email on campus and it is case sensitive.


USB drives

Once you have connected, you will see a standard University desktop – you can use your software, files and applications as normal.

If you want to load and save from a USB drive then just plug this in to your PC. You can find the device in “Computer” on the University desktop and copy / paste files between devices, just as you would on a machine on Campus

Please note: You should not copy any sensitive data to your local computer or memory sticks and should only work on such data directly on the Staff Desktop Service.  Please refer to the Information security policies.


If you have a printer connected to the computer you are using to remotely connect, then this will automatically be made available as the default printer in your Remote Session.    Most printer types are supported and printing will appear just as if you were working on your own PC. 

You can also find and print to University based printers; for may see the main printer for your department made available on the system automatically; but it will not be the default – you will need to select it.  If you printer to a University printer, you must ensure that the data is not confidential, as it will output on that device and could potentially be collected or viewed by other members of staff.

Known issues
  • Please make sure you allow your Firewall to permit Remote Desktop Connection (if prompted) – this is port 3389 if your firewall software has to be manually configured.  More troubleshooting information is contained in the Remote Desktop Connection Guide and in the Portal Help system.
  • If you are seeing errors like ":error message "unable to open connection file - (file name)" then you can run our Fix RDP program to reset your computers default RDP file.  You can download this here.   Otherwise, please try connecting manually, as per the instructions above.

Please note: some of the documents on this page are in PDF format. In order to view a PDF you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader Get Acrobat Reader