A Virtual World – Remote Tools for Everyday Use
Over the years, I can’t count the number of people, who are amazed at how quickly and easily someone can login to their computer remotely to assist with a problem. In many cases, an end-user can give up complete access to their workstation to someone they have never met in person, and who they may never meet. Ask Joe and no, Joe is not just some fake name, we assigned to a team of engineers who work on issues without having to reveal their true identity. Joe is a real person. He works out of our office every day, and the part of his job where he provides remote support would not be possible without remote access tools.
So, what is more interesting? The fact that someone will put their faith and trust into an experienced engineer like Joe without every meeting him, or the fact that with a few clicks of a mouse, he can completely control your entire computer to a point where he can remove viruses, assist with configuration mishaps or provide you solutions on how to work more effectively? I know Joe personally, so I understand the trust thing. Even after the number of years working with these tools, I’m still amazed at their power and the fact that most of them are out there free for use. Did you catch that part, free for you to use? Let’s look at some of these powerful tools that you can use in your business.
If you are not a managed service client of ours, but someone that we do a lot of work for, you can almost be sure that we have this tool on at least one machine in your network. LogMeIn is a powerful tool that runs on a workstation or server at all times and allows for remote connection from any machine with a web browser (and the correct passwords, of course). If you have an internet connection, you can easily use this remote access tool. The drawback however is that it needs to be installed ahead of time on your system.
This powerful tool is also made by the programmers at LogMeIn. The biggest difference is that this software isn’t installed on the workstation. If you want to use it for a remote connection, you need to have someone on the other machine go to the website and begin the connection. They must then provide a connection string to the engineer and grant them access to control their machine. The biggest drawback is need for the end-user to make a lot of clicks.
Team Viewer (www.teamviewer.com)
Team Viewer is another application where you need an end-user to use the connection. It is different from Join.Me, in that it is an application that you can choose to install on your computer or not. The biggest difference is that Team Viewer has older versions of its software on their website. This means that you can use Team Viewer to connection to older machines. Windows 98 clients can use Team Viewer while Join.Me will not work on these older model machines.
These are just three of the remote tools that are easily accessible and simple to use. Always remember to read the license agreement before you go ahead and start installing and rolling one of them out to your company. And, yes Joe is absolutely trustworthy and great at solving your technical problems via remote accesss.
Scott Hirschfeld is the President of CTaccess, an Elm Grove IT support company that has been helping small businesses stop focusing on IT and getting back to doing business since 1990. Under his leadership CTaccess provides the business minded approach of larger IT companies with the personalized touch of the smaller ones. Connect with Scott on LinkedIn.