RDP to Kali Linux

I occasionally have to use Kali in an almost entirely windows infrastructure. It is a VM on ESX and using the console through VSphere is, quite frankly, absolute pants. After struggling for a few weeks I looked for an alternate solution and came across several posts that suggested you could RDP to Kali if you first installed XRDP

What wasn’t discussed was the fact that XRDP has a long and unresolved problem with higher resolutions and (possibly) with the Gnome windows manager.

After struggling for some time, changing the default windows manager from Gnome and trying several different ones, I stumbled across this article from Rafe Hart. The steps I followed are repeated below.

Install XRDP

Update the package lists and packages

$ sudo apt update && apt upgrade

Install XRDP

$ sudo apt install xrdp

Enable the service to start at boot

$ sudo systemctl enable xrdp

Restart the service

$ sudo systemctl restart xrdp

XRDP is now installed and setup to start at boot time. Now we have to deal with the issue of permissions and colour depth

Create the the file /etc/polkit-1/rules.d/02-allow-colord.rules and insert the following text as its contents

polkit.addRule(function(action, subject) {
if ((action.id == “org.freedesktop.color-manager.create-device” ||
action.id == “org.freedesktop.color-manager.create-profile” ||
action.id == “org.freedesktop.color-manager.delete-device” ||
action.id == “org.freedesktop.color-manager.delete-profile” ||
action.id == “org.freedesktop.color-manager.modify-device” ||
action.id == “org.freedesktop.color-manager.modify-profile”) &&
subject.isInGroup(“vglusers”)) {
return polkit.Result.YES;

Change the colour depth for your remote RDP client to use a maximum of 16 Bit (High Colour). Images below are from Royal TSX, and Windows RDP

RDPv10 for MacOS
RDP Client for Windows

Display Setting in RoyalTSX v4


Original Post – Author Rafe Hart

Royal TSX – from Royal Apps

RDPv10 Client for MacOS – Microsoft Corporation

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