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MS-Windows Troubleshooting

Remote Desktop cannot verify the identity of the remote computer because there is a time or date difference ...


When trying to connect to another computer using Remote Desktop, after having entered (correct) login credentials you are presented with a dialog box saying:

Remote Desktop Connection

Remote Desktop cannot verify the identity of the remote computer because there is a time or date difference between your computer and the remote computer. Make sure your computer's clock is set to the correct time, then try connecting again. If the problem occurs again, contact your network administrator or the owner of the remote computer.

When you click Ok it simply goes back to the Remote Desktop Connection dialog where you can select which computer to connect to.

Possible Causes and Remedies:

The clocks on the local and remote computers need to closely agree in order for Kerberos authentication to work - possibly within 5 minutes or so (but I haven't verified that).

In my case the clocks were in sync, so this error may have other causes. Sadly any resolution will require that you login to the remote computer - this may require physical access or the last point (below) may help:

  • Check DNS

    Check the DNS settings of the network adapter on the target computer - specifically that the DNS server settings are correct. In my case the network card had been changed, configured to use a static IP address but the DNS servers were left blank. Setting the DNS servers to the DNS servers on the LAN cured the problem.

  • Check the clock

    Check that the clock on the remote computer is correct.

  • Check System Event log for errors.

    General troubleshooting, but check the system event log for recent errors and warnings. These may give an important clue as to the cause of the problem. (In my case it showed other connectivity problems which is why I checked DNS.)

  • Work around - RDC using IP address

    Try connecting using the IP address of the remote computer instead of its DNS name. If you use the IP address then Windows does not need to verify the name check.

These notes have been tested with clients running Windows 10, and may also apply to other versions of Windows.

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