Connect to MyDesktop

Updated on 24 January 2024

Our virtual desktop system provides you access to a University Windows desktop, just like a student PC in the Library. Use MyDesktop to access specialist software you need to carry out your work.

On this page

MyDesktop is easy to use and secure, and gives you a smarter, faster, more flexible way to connect to your University desktop at your convenience. It uses software called VMWare Horizon from one of the world's leading desktop virtualisation companies.

When should I use MyDesktop?

If you need to use specialist software that is not available to use at home via AppsAnywhere and can't get into an IT suite on-campus, MyDesktop gives you access to a University Windows desktop from any remote location as if you were sitting in front of it. Once your connected, you can perform a wide range of tasks as if you’re actually using the computer in person.

Client vs web access

We recommend using the client where possible as it provides much better performance and gives a smoother experience. However if you're unable to install the VMWare Horizon software on a device, there is a web browser based backup.

Install VMWare Horizon

You only need to install the client once, you can then skip this section in the future

To install the client software:

  1. Visit the VMWare Horizon download page
  2. Find the client for your device, such as Windows or macOS, then click or tap the Go to Downloads link for your operating system.
  3. On the page that opens, click or tap the Download Now button and wait for the installer to finish downloading.
    • On mobile devices, this will open your app store and you can skip the following steps
  4. Run the installer from the download folder
  5. Select Agree & Install (you can Customize Installation, but this is not recommended).
  6. After the client has finished installing files, select Finish.
    • You will then need to restart your machine to proceed. Make sure to save any personal files or programs before selecting Restart Now.

Once the client has been installed, you will be able to use the Launch MyDesktop Client option without needing to repeat the above steps.

If you are prompted to enter a server name on the first launch of the client, please use

Launch MyDesktop client

Once you've installed the software you can use the button below to launch the MyDesktop client

  • If your browser asks click Open VMWare Horizon Client

Start a MyDesktop session

To start a MyDesktop session:

  1. Open the VMWare Horizon app.
  2. Double click ‘’
  3. A new browser window will open in a separate tab. You will receive the same MFA (Multi Factor Authentication) prompt as if logging into your University Microsoft365 email. Enter your University login details (as described below).
  4. A page will appear asking that you enter your second login factor by text or Authenticator app, depending on your MFA setup.
  5. To launch a MyDesktop session double click on one of the desktop options you are presented with in the VMware Horizon Client. This will open a virtual desktop that you can use as if you were using a computer on campus.

For those who have already logged in using MFA on their University account, you will not be required to authenticate, and you will be automatically directed to the VMWare Horizon Client.

If you have a username that doesn’t include your ID number (students) or end with a number (staff), make sure you enter it correctly.


  • Your very first login may be a bit slow as your profile is created, later logins will be much quicker
  • You can only launch one virtual desktop at a time. A second connection attempt at the same time will result in an FSLogix error.

If you have multiple monitors

By default, MyDesktop will open on all monitors currently connected to your device, meaning you may have unusable space if you have multiple monitors connected.

You can adjust which monitors are used for the current session by clicking the down arrow next to the Fullscreen button.

To change the default option for future settings, click the ... button, click Settings, then chose an option from the Display dropdown box:

  • Fullscreen - All Monitors: opens multiple by default, you can then pick which monitors to use using the down arrow beside the fullscreen button.
  • Fullscreen - Single Monitor: MyDesktop will launch on your Primary monitor (for example your laptop screen).

Close a MyDesktop session

To close your MyDesktop session, you can Sign Out from the Start Menu as you would on a physical device or select the close option at the top right of the MyDesktop window.

When closing a session there will be a delay before you can log back into a new session, as MyDesktop needs time to close properly. If you experience issues logging back into MyDesktop, check the Troubleshooting section for further information.

Web access

Only use the Web Access if you're unable to use the client, performance will be slower and you may find it more difficult to use apps that require careful mouse or keyboard movements.

Log in with your full username. This will take you to the web client landing page.

Launch a MyDesktop web access session

To launch a desktop session, select one of the desktop options you are presented with in the VMware Web Client. This will open a virtual desktop that you can use as if you were using a computer on campus.

Close a MyDesktop web access session

To close your MyDesktop session, you can Sign Out from the Start Menu as you would on a physical device, or just close the tab or window that it is running in.

Settings for web access

There are fewer options available compared to the client. To access settings:

  • Before you start a session: click the cog icon at the top
  • During a session: find the small tab which is floating half way down the left of the screen, click this to open the sidebar and then choose settings a the top.

The settings you are most likely to need to adjust are:

  • Use multi Monitors if there are two monitors
  • Enable Windows Key for Desktops
    • If you need to use of the Windows key, such as for commands within certain programs, on the desktop, you will need to toggle this option on. You can then use the Windows key by pressing Ctrl + Windows within MyDesktop.


If you see a message in your browser asking for clipboard permission, you should Allow the access to be able to copy and paste to the Virtual Desktop. Without this option enabled, you may not be able to interact with the window as you would expect to. This may be different on other browsers, but we recommend you use Google Chrome.