My program is a wrapper for Remote Desktop Connection which generates a ".rdp" file and launches the file through the normal program. I am trying to mimic Remote Desktop Connection's resolution slider so I can enter in to the file the desired size of the new window, here is a screen shot of the program:

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What would be the best way of generating the stopping points for my version of the slider? Currently I see two options:

  1. Build a large list of common resolutions and filter out ones that can not be used because the monitor does not support it (I think this is what Remote Desktop Connection is doing)
  2. Take the difference between the minimum and maximum resolution then divide by a fixed number of ticks I want to display.

If I go with option 1 I am concerned about putting too many items in the list. I would likely use the list from the List of common resolutions page from Wikipedia but I don't know which ones I should include and which ones I should not.

Here is my preliminary list of resolutions that I plan on using for option 1

1024 x 768
1366 x 768
1280 x 960
1440 x 900
1280 x 1024
1600 x 900
1400 x 1050
1440 x 1080
1600 x 1200
1920 x 1080
1920 x 1200
2048 x 1152
2560 x 2048
3200 x 2048
  • You can take 3200x2048 off the list. Nobody really runs that except for medical displays.
    – Frank
    Jun 18, 2012 at 20:55
  • @Frank The software we are demoing via the RDP connection is for hospitals :( Jun 18, 2012 at 21:14
  • Keep that, its the resolution they use for xrays and medical imaging. Maybe a different approach would be to get your Guest's resolution, and set the rdp resolution to that? Perhaps maybe you should get your guest's resoution and disable all that are above it, since that would make a client bigger than your guest.
    – Frank
    Jun 18, 2012 at 21:16
  • @Frank that is what I am leaning toward doing, that was the point I was trying to make with "Build a large list of common resolutions and filter out ones that can not be used because the monitor does not support it". The issue is some clients do not want the RDP session taking up their entire screen so choose a lower resolution intentionally. Jun 18, 2012 at 21:22
  • Makes sense. If you look at join.me they do some sort of scaling on their software. So if i connect with a 1920 x 1200 to a 2560x 1440 mac, it just scales down. I dont think wrapping rdp will give you that result, but something to look into. If its just for presentations. Give them their own (full screen) and below. As for below, limit it to a list of resolutions that make sense for your application.
    – Frank
    Jun 18, 2012 at 21:26

2 Answers 2


As you have done create a list of resolutions that your application will support. There is no point in supporting a resolution that is too small to make your application workable.

Next, get your clients screen resolution. No point in giving them an option that goes beyond their screen. This can get tricky for multi monitor deployments.

Last, create your rdp connection file, with the screen options from the first step, up to the maximum resolution supported by your client.

If this is a support tool, might want to look into a VNC alternative.


I agree that the best (or at least most conventional) option is to use a fixed set of generally-supported resolutions.

Here's how open-source Remote Desktop client CoRD solves the same problem:

Screen size selector in CoRD

CoRD is also pretty nifty in that I can select a resolution larger than my current display and the remote screen is scaled down to fit the window size. That also allows me to resize the remote window while a session is running. That might not be ideal for all users, but suits me just fine!

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