What is Software Remote?


Software Remote is a distributed academic computing service which provides you access from home to certain Windows programs that you would normally have to visit an Purdue IT instructional lab to use.



Software Remote is a distributed academic computing service which provides you access from home to certain Windows programs that you would normally have to visit an Purdue IT instructional lab to use.  These programs appear to run on your desktop, but they are actually running on the Software Remote server and sending only keyboard and mouse clicks and screen updates between your computer and the server.


Anyone with a Purdue career account can access the standard Software Remote programs.  Software Remote is based on Microsoft Windows terminal services and Citrix MetaFrame technology.  To access Software Remote see How do I connect to the Software Remote System?.


Programs may be installed on Software Remote to overcome a number of deployment challenges including:

  • Providing access to Windows programs from hardware that cannot run the programs because of licensing restrictions, platform hardware restrictions, access to common files, or application software version requirements.
  • Providing access to Windows programs from non-Windows platforms.
  • Providing access to Windows programs that are not licensed for use on non-Purdue equipment or are difficult to install on equipment that is not centrally administered.

There are other benefits to those who access programs through Software Remote:

  • Program lists may be customized based on course enrollment.
  • You can print to the printer that is connected to your personal computer when you access Software Remote.
  • You can save files to your local computer or to your Home Directory from Software Remote.


While Purdue IT encourages the usage of Software Remote and would like to see it incorporated into classes, there are certain limitations that should be understood.  Software Remote is not well suited for programs that require a high screen refresh rate, such as animated graphics programs.

Access and Appropriate Use

All West Lafayette faculty, staff, and students can access a standard set of programs on Software Remote using their Purdue University career account. The use of Software Remote is governed by appropriate use policies that affect all Purdue University networks and equipment.  In addition to these policies:

Software Remote is not meant to replace desktops or to relieve departments from the need to buy software in support of faculty work.  For example, it would be appropriate for an EET instructor who occasionally uses PhotoShop to access the program through Software Remote; however, an Art and Design instructor who frequently uses PhotoShop should purchase and install the program on his or her office machine.

Software Remote is a shared system.  As such, you should not knowingly, intentionally, or maliciously run programs, submit jobs, or otherwise use the system in such a way as to compromise its stability or prevent others from accessing Software Remote resources.

Application Installations

Currently, a subset of the programs that are available in the Purdue IT Instructional Labs is installed on the Software Remote system for remote access.  The goal is to make as many programs available on Software Remote as are suitable. Purdue IT continually prioritizes and installs commonly available software from the instructional labs on Software Remote.

Software Remote Uptime and Availability

Because Software Remote operates across multiple servers, downtime should be minimal for you.  While there may be times when one machine is unavailable because of maintenance or repairs, the integrity of the entire system will not be compromised by these activities.  Major system downtime that affects all machines will be scheduled only between semester breaks.  Weekly reboots of the service are scheduled for early Sunday mornings.

Additional Help for Software Remote


Still need help?  Click the 'Purdue IT Request' button to start a ticket.



Article ID: 26
Thu 3/23/23 10:05 AM
Fri 5/24/24 3:51 PM

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