Smooth Fonts in RDP Sessions

If you use the rdp protocol to access a windows desktop, or applications on your linux desktop, you may wonder why you have to put up with jagged fonts on the windows side. If you’re a user of rdp on linux, then you’ll know that rdesktop is the rdp client application for linux. Of course, there are various GUI wrappers for rdesktop, including KRDC for the KDE desktop.

Currently rdesktop does not have an explicit option to enable font smoothing. However, you can enable it by manipulating the -x argument (which specifies whether to use the modem, broadband or LAN experience) with the appropriate hex code. The relevant hex codes are:

Hex Code Experience
0x8F modem default + font smoothing
0×81 broadband default + font smoothing
0×80 LAN default + font smoothing

SO, to get font smoothing with the LAN experience, then use:

rdesktop -x 0x80 winserver

If you use a GUI wrapper, then there should be an option to add additional parameters. Just enter the relevant -x argument here. For example in KRDC:


Please remember that in order for font smoothing to work, the server has to support it. Any windows version post XP SP3 should be good to go.