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Wise Tech Tips

Connecting to a Remote Computer over the Internet

By James Wise
web posted October 13, 2009
TECH TIPS – Do you ever need to connect to a remote computer over the Internet? For example, maybe someone you know needs your assistance. Perhaps there are also times when you would like to give someone access to your computer. If you ever find yourself in this situation, there are some great, free options that could help you.

Recently, a friend of mine from work mentioned TeamViewer. This program is free for personal use. It seems very easy to use and offers a lot of functionality (like file sharing) that some other free options don’t include. Another thing I love about the program is that no installation is necessary. It’s very easy to have someone run the program so that you can connect. This is particularly helpful in case you are trying to help someone with very limited computer knowledge.

1) To download TeamViewer, go to http://www.teamviewer.com/index.aspx
2) Click “download now”
3) Save this file somewhere
4) Run the TeamViewer_Setup.exe file after the download is complete
5) If prompted for run confirmation, click run
6) Select the “run” option from the menu (or you can install it if you plan to use it a lot) and click next
7) Check the box to accept the license terms and click next
8) If a message from Windows Firewall appears, click Unblock (and press continue if you see that)

*I hid the ID and password in the screenshot above.

If you want to give someone access to your computer, just give them the ID and password you see on the TeamViewer screen.

If you want to connect to a remote computer, ask the person at the PC you want to connect to for the ID and password they see. Then to connect to that computer, enter the ID they gave you in the ID box under “create session”, choose “remote support”, and click “connect to partner”. You will then be prompted for the password (which the remote person should have provided when giving you the ID). After entering this, you’ll see the remote computer and have control over it.

While controlling a remote PC, the monitor, keyboard, and mouse at the PC continue to work. This means the remote user can see what you are doing and even show you what they do. This is particularly helpful for troubleshooting and training.

Here are a couple of additional options for this sort of thing:

CrossLoop (http://www.crossloop.com/) is similar to TeamViewer. One interesting aspect of it is that you can enlist the help of professionals to assist you. This involves paying for their services but the cost is generally low and normally less than actually taking your PC to someone.

LogMeIn (https://secure.logmein.com/US/products/free/) offers free and paid versions where the remote user controls the PC through a web browser screen. File transfer isn’t available in the free version.

I’ve only touched on these programs and what they have to offer. You can read more about them from their websites. If you need further assistance or have any questions, send me a mail (EdgefieldTechHelp@gmail.com) and I’ll be happy to help!

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