As an IT enthusiast, I spend a lot of time on IT-related blogs, forums, subreddits and so on. But one thing I’ve noticed in my journey across the interwebs is that there aren’t a lot of IT pros recommending Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Connection Manager (RDCMan) these days. I think this is because they’ve come to the conclusion that it’s simply not a solution for their sophisticated needs.

And so, to help some new IT pros save time and avoid getting stressed out, I wanted to write about why, in my opinion, RDCMan is outdated. First, let’s take a look at what RDCMan is all about.

About RDCMan

RDCMan creates a single location for IT administrators to organize, group and manage connections, so they can manage multiple desktops. It was designed by the Windows Live Experience team for their internal use.

To be fair, there are some good things about RDCMan that should be pointed out. For example, it’s useful for sysadmins and other IT pros in Windows-only deployments who need regular access to groups of computers, labs or server farms. It’s also possible to organize connections by groups and consolidate multiple RDP connections in a single window. And of course, RDCMan is free.

However, RDCMan has some major limitations that IT pros searching for a viable remote connection tool should be aware of. Here are the reasons for my view that is just too outdated:

Lack of Integrations

Back when RDCMan was first released, it was embraced by IT pros and generated lots of fans. But that was many years ago. Times have changed — but RDCMan hasn’t. And arguably its biggest flaw is the lack of time-saving integrations. The best that IT pros can do with RDCMan is to use it in conjunction with external apps like TeamViewer and LogMeIn. But it has no native ability to integrate tools and centralize control.

Only for Windows Deployments

When RDCMan arrived on the scene, many IT pros (most of them, actually) were working in Windows environments. But these days, IT pros need to switch between platforms to remain productive and be efficient – yet RDCMan remains exclusively for Windows deployments. This leaves the scores of IT pros who work in Mac or Linux environments searching for alternatives.

Very Basic

To their credit, Microsoft didn’t dial up the hype with RDCMan and promise that it could do things that it couldn’t. In fact, here’s the official description: “RDCMan manages multiple remote desktop connections. It is useful for managing server labs or large server farms where you need regular access to each machine such as automated check-in systems and data centers.” Pretty down to earth, isn’t it?

My point is that RDCMan is a very basic tool and was never designed to handle sophisticated functions that IT pros need, like managing privileged accounts, securing sensitive data, generating strong passwords, creating audit logs, utilizing 2FA, and so on.

What Is the Best Alternative?

As Get VoIP’s CEO Reuben Yonatan recently noted on our blog, it can be hard to find good remote desktop connection management software. Hard yes, but impossible no!

There are actually several good alternatives to RDCMan. Ultimately, it depends on what you need now and into the future.

As a starting point, I recommend heading over to the popular website AlternativeTo, where you’ll find a few alternatives, such as Devolutions’ Remote Desktop Manager, RoyalTS and mRemoteNG.

Give Remote Desktop Manager a Try

Speaking of Remote Desktop Manager, it’s used by more than 350,000 IT pros around the world, and it’s available in both Free and Enterprise (licensed) versions.

Here are some of the reviews of Remote Desktop Manager that IT pros have published on AlternativeTo:

  • “I used to be an avid supporter of MobaXterm and others, but RDM completely changed my life in managing a large infrastructure. If you ever wanted to be able to do virtually anything across a large number of systems, RDM is the swiss army knife of remote desktop managers. It supports everything! AutoHotKey, AutoIT, and just … everything! Get it right now!”
  • “Remote Desktop Manager is easy to use from any platform: Windows, Mac, Android, Linux. If you need a software to manage a bulk of computers with any remote protocol – SSH, RDP … RDM is the one you need! With a full customization of your work-space it makes life easy for sysadmins!”
  • “RDM is one of the best products out there. If you use Microsoft Remote Desktop Manager, this RDM is like Microsoft RDM on steroids!
  • “In my 25 years in IT I have used many remote access/management tools. Some were plain horrible (refresh delay) and others were horribly complicated. With RDM you get a clean looking remote desktop management tool where you will keep on discovering new features every time you use it.”

(Aw shucks guys, thanks for the nice words — we’re blushing!)

If you’d like to find out whether RDM is the enterprise-grade and EXTREMELY well-supported remote connection and password management solution you need, please request your 30-day free trial here.

Do YOU Think RDCMan Is Outdated?

As I said at the very beginning of the article, the reasons above are based on my point of view about why RDCMan is outdated. I know that there are many IT Pros still using this useful tool and are persuaded that they could not live without it. If you're one of them, please leave a comment below and share with the community why you think RDCMan is still a must. You can also contact me at jdupont@devolutions.net if you want to if you want to debate!