4 Remote PC Access tools that AREN’T LogMeIn Free
Published on January 30, 2014
We mourn the loss of LogMeIn Free, as they recently announced the end of their free remote-access and collaboration tool.
Never fear! There are still four great free options that are just as awesome. Here are some options from PC Advisor, which all help you access a document, collaborate, or use multiple PCs at once.
TeamViewer is a reliable choice. It has all of the basics covered, with the ability to install the processing system as both a server and a client.
Some of its more fun features include the ability to open multiple sessions in tabs (like a browser), as well as copy and pasting between computers, and drag-and-dropping files from one desktop to the remote one.
Aside from the occasional pop-up message suggesting you upgrade to the paid version of the tool, it is very able free version which easily replaces LogMeIn Free.
Windows Remote Desktop
While Windows Remote Desktop doesn't support screen-sharing in the truest sense (the screen of the "controlled" computer goes black instead of staying live), this tool is very fast... and very free.
This product is also unique as it also has an option for Mac, believe it or not!
It does take a minute to set up, especially with having to tweak the office router a bit to get it working for you, as you have to forward a port to the PC you want to control. It can get extremely tricky if you want to control more than one PC - doable, but tricky. If you are regularly wanting to control multiple PCs at once, this next option may be better for you.
VNC (Virtual Network Computing) isn't a product, per say. It is actually an open-source remote control and display technology. It isn't as simple to use as products like TeamViewer or Join.Me, as it requires knowledge of IP addresses, but it can suit certain needs (like controlling multiple PCs at once).
You can connect multiple PCs behind a public IP by using more ports. Typically, VNC installs both the "server" and "viewer" software on each PC by default, so you can control PCs in either direction.
VNC works for Windows, Mac, and Linux. While the setup can get a little complicated, it runs exceptionally well once your make it through the installation process.
Join.me is a meeting service from LogMeIn that additionally provides remote access. it is a convenient service that can be used quickly by only using a Web browser.
The user with the "host" computer simply goes to the Join.Me site and downloads a file. Then, the meeting host runs the file and give the 9-digit passcode to the user on the other end, which they enter on the website as well. Once control is granted to the meeting originator, you can cha, send files, etc.
The downside of Join.Me is that it doesn't function for unattended remote access - the other computer needs to grant permission. It works best for one party to help another party, rather than independent work.
Need assistance? Unsure about which app will best suit your needs? Send us an email or give us a call - we'll be happy to help.