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Connecting to your Windows instance in Amazon Lightsail using the Microsoft Remote Desktop client on a Mac

Last updated: February 24, 2022

You can use the Microsoft Remote Desktop client to connect to your Windows instance from your macOS computer. Microsoft Remote Desktop requires that you use the administrator user name and password for your Lightsail Windows instance. This can be the default password assigned to the instance when it is created, or your own password if you changed the default password.

This topic walks you through the steps to obtain your default administrator password from the Lightsail console, and configure Microsoft Remote Desktop to connect to your Windows instance. You can also connect to your instance from within the Lightsail console using your browser. For more information, see Connecting to your Windows instance in Amazon Lightsail using the Microsoft Remote Desktop client.

Get the required connection information for your Windows instance

You will need the public IP address, user name, and administrator password for your Windows instance to connect to it using the Microsoft Remote Desktop client.

Complete the following procedure to get the required information.

  1. Sign in to the Lightsail console.

  2. Choose the Instances tab on the Lightsail home page.

  3. Make note of the public IP address of the instance you want to connect to.

  4. Choose the name of the instance you want to connect to.

  5. Choose the Connect tab.

  6. Choose Show default password to obtain the Windows administrator password for your instance.

    The prompt displays the default administrator password for your Windows instance.

  7. Copy the administrator password. You will use it to sign in to your instance using the Microsoft Remote Desktop client later in this guide.

Configure Microsoft Remote Desktop and connect to your instance

Complete the following procedure to install the Microsoft Remote Desktop client on your Mac, and configure it to connect to your instance.

  1. Open the App Store on your Mac, and search for Microsoft Remote Desktop.

  2. Find the Microsoft Remote Desktop app in the search results, and choose GET to install the application.

  3. Open Microsoft Remote Desktop after the installation is complete.

  4. At the top, choose the plus (+) icon, and choose Add PC.

  5. In the PC name text box, paste the public IP address of your instance.

  6. Choose Add.

  7. Right-click the icon for your instance, and choose Connect.

  8. Enter Administrator into the Username text box, and enter the default administrator password that you got earlier in this guide into the Password text box.

  9. Choose Continue to connect to your instance.

You are now connected to your Lightsail Windows instance.