Crummy Windoze is obviously not well known for graceful remote access. You typically have to rely on heavy screen-scraping and keyboard/mouse-trapping solutions. At work, for example, I’m forced to go through this nasty Cisco VPN that takes over the client’s networking, then use VNC or Remote Desktop or whatever on top of that. Very clunky, it ends up being so slow it brings my productivity to its knees. Seriously, I’ve developed ulcers waiting for the screen to refresh.

My brother makes a living doing PC tech support for anyone that needs it. And he’s really good at finding the optimal solutions. In this case, it’s, web-based software that does the remote session thing as blazingly fast as you could imagine. It tunnels through any and all firewalls, and runs over SSL so the traffic is encrypted. And it’s the closest I’ve seen to feeling like you’re actually working directly on the machine, even though it’s remote. achieves this by being efficient. Here’s rough numbers comparing the bandwidth used by to the Cisco VPN + TightVNC (with fast compression), as reported by the Windows Performance tool on the remote machine:

Remote tool Performance Total bandwidth usage (up+down)
Cisco VPN + TightVNC Unusable, screen redraws take > 10 seconds From 11kbps to 22kbps during screen redraws Nearly instantaneous response 8kbps during screen redraws

On top of the much better performance, offers full keyboard functionality, including Alt-Tab and Ctrl-Esc, absolutely minimal interference in full screen mode, the ability to zoom to fit the session perfectly in any client, and elegant handling of multiple monitors. You can even lay out the full remote machine’s multi-monitor display in the client, zoomed to fit the resolution of the client. I kid you not, try it out, you’ll feel like you are there. :>

UPDATE: Today asked me to install a Firefox extension before remoting in. That failed, and then the Java-based remote session kept failing, too. This is under Vista. I changed Firefox to run as admin, and I was able to install the Firefox plugin and successfully remote in again.


  1. Stefan says:

    LogMeIn is a blessing, they do have a VPN solution as well that is really awesome called Hamachi.

  2. m says:

    Thanks Stefan, yes it looks like it would be nice for setting up LAN-like gaming over the net. What do you use it for?

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