I use Remote Desktop to connect to my new Windows box over the network, and it's a very pleasant experience. For starters, it's very fast - whether the client is on Windows and Linux - to the point where it feels like a local session. X/SSH, on the other hand has an irritating lag for each click (but maybe it's a problem with my X server on Windows). Remote Desktop gives you your start menu & desktop icons, you can optionally export local drives to the remote system so that you can directly open and save files (as opposed to saving them on one system and moving them using sftp/scp - and having to re-authenticate yourself), sound played remotely comes to the local system, and printers can be exported. Remote Desktop preserves your earlier login sesssion rather than creating a new one.
It may be de rigueur (at least in some circles) to diss Microsoft, but there's no denying that they create more usable solutions that the open-source bigots.
Last Updated: 18 Mar 2006