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Remote Viewing Software

Posted on 2014-01-23
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Last Modified: 2014-03-05
Now that logmein is not offering free services anymore, are there any free or cheap alternatives? I do use it for a mix of home and small business use, so that takes team viewer out of the question because you have to pay for business use.

I don't want to spend $700 just for a remote software. I'm shooting for cheap or free.

What are my options? Never was ever to make services like vnc to work out decently, too many firewall issues. Having teamviewer and stuff worked out great, because it only used port 80 etc.
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Question by:Pancake_Effect
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12 Comments
 
LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:Dan Craciun
ID: 39804882
If you're not opposed to Google, Remote Desktop from Chrome works OK:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/chrome-remote-desktop/gbchcmhmhahfdphkhkmpfmihenigjmpp?hl=en

HTH,
Dan
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LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:ienaxxx
ID: 39804942
Ammyy admin has a licensing model that is really cheaper than teamviewer, if you use a single computer or 2 to control all the others, you'll find a less-than-35 license that should suit your needs.

an alternativ would be to setup a VNC proxy on a server and to create an ultraVNC auto-client. but it's really complex, mate.

Bye! :-)
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LVL 55

Expert Comment

by:Joe Winograd, EE MVE 2015&2016
ID: 39804995
There's join.me, strangely enough also from the LogMeIn folks (and still providing a free version):
https://join.me/

But the problem is that someone else needs to be sitting at the remote computer...both parties need to enter a 9-digit code. So it's fine to help someone troubleshoot a problem, but does not work for accessing an unattended machine.

I see that Dan has already given you the Chrome Remote Desktop link, and here are two other options in the Chrome space. One is AccessToGo (free), which I think allows unattended access, but I'm not sure:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/accesstogo-fastest-free-r/pdeelgamlgannhelgoegilelnnojegoh?hl=en

The other is Google Hangouts, which can be used via Gmail or Google+ (all free). The remote desktop control feature is a relatively new enhancement. It worked well on the few occasions I used it, but it also requires someone on the other end. Regards, Joe
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LVL 4

Author Comment

by:Pancake_Effect
ID: 39805041
Those are great options for my home environments, however I'm looking for all in one type of deal. I've tried join.me and google products, but my family members are so computer illiterate it's hard to get join.me going sometimes for them. The reason google won't work the best for me is because I do use this sometimes in a small business environment. I use it to manage some servers when I'm out of the office or on vacation.

I'm really looking for something that provides a list of computers that I can just connect to if possible?
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LVL 33

Expert Comment

by:Paul Sauvé
ID: 39805055
Please ignore! -
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LVL 21

Expert Comment

by:CompProbSolv
ID: 39805074
If you are accessing the same computers repeatedly, I would spend the time to set up VNC.  If you use TightVNC, it will do the adjustments to the computer's firewall, though that should not be too difficult to do manually.  The slightly trickier part is to set up port forwarding in the router and to ensure a static (or reserved DHCP) address for the workstation.

The VNC approach requires setup time, but then requires no effort on the client side each time you want to connect, other than the computer being up and running.

For the on-demand approach, I have been using techinline.com.  It runs $300/year for unlimited number of hosts, just one at a time.  It is not free, but is normally initiated by the client connecting to a site and giving you a code number.  It also has an unattended feature that I've not used yet.
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LVL 33

Expert Comment

by:Paul Sauvé
ID: 39805118
Mikogo has a one-time payment of $312...
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LVL 4

Author Comment

by:Pancake_Effect
ID: 39805460
@paulsauve, I've heard of the progam before. Does it allow unattended viewing? Meaning can I remote into a computer without someone being there?

$312 might be worth it for a one time payment. Logmein and those are trying to charge twice that per year pretty much.
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LVL 35

Accepted Solution

by:
Dan Craciun earned 2000 total points
ID: 39805532
If you need to manage servers, I would advise against any third-party remote viewing software, for the simple reason that you do not control their security.

I always setup a VPN and then use RDP once connected to the VPN. It works well and I have the logs to check for anything suspicious.

When connecting to customer's/friend's/etc workstations/laptops it's okay to use whatever works for you, cause there is a person giving you access and you close the connection after you finished.

HTH,
Dan
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LVL 33

Expert Comment

by:Paul Sauvé
ID: 39805533
2.The organizer starts a session from their desktop, receives a unique 9-digit session ID from the Mikogo server, and distributes the session ID to their participants.
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LVL 4

Author Comment

by:Pancake_Effect
ID: 39819300
Shoot so mikogo won't work for my purposes
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LVL 4

Author Closing Comment

by:Pancake_Effect
ID: 39906958
Took note of this. I decided to use a VPN, and I left my home related things to use the free teamviewer application. I was hoping there was something like teamviewer for both business and home use for free, but there is not. So this works out, and it's nice to know it's secure.
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