Remote Desktop Solutions: PC to Mac

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Chris.J, Oct 17, 2010.

  1. Chris.J macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2010
    #1
    Hi everyone,

    I use CoRD to remote desktop from my Mac to other PCs on my network, which works nicely.

    However, I often find the need to remote my computers at home, from my work machine (Windows XP).

    What is the best solution for doing this to my Mac? I'd prefer it, if possible, to not require installation of any software on my work machine, as they can be a bit funny about us installing 'unconfirmed' software.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. LPZ macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    #2
    Unless Windows XP includes a VNC client (OS X does), I don't see how you can do this unless you install such a client on your work machine.
     
  3. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #3
    TeamViewer works with Windows, Mac OS X, etc., but it does require installing a small app on both computers.
     
  4. Chris.J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2010
    #4
    Thanks for the replies.

    Windows doesn't have a VNC client as such, but I always got a little confused with this. It has RDP software, which I thought was the same as VNC, but for some reason you can't use this to remote a Mac :confused:
     
  5. priest19 macrumors newbie

    priest19

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    #5
    You can download a VNC client for your Windows XP machine. VNC and RDP are two different things. Try the VNC client called RealVNC, it is free for your Windows computer.
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #6
    There are way more vnc clients/server available for windows then for OSX.

    I suggest using tightvnc for windows.

    Also for non-vnc type access you have the following programs and this is by no means comprehensive.

    logmein, for non commerical type use, its free
    gotomypc, not free but I think it offers better performance then anything that's out there.
    Microsoft RDP, if you're looking to access a PC from a mac.
    VNC, both OSX's built in, and also chicken of the VNC if you're looking to access a PC from a Mac.

    All of these applications achieve the same end, but do so differently, RDP is a Microsoft implementation, and so if you need to access a windows box, this will work, but being an MS product, you'll cannot use RDP to access your mac from a PC.
     
  7. Chris.J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2010
    #7
    Okay, that makes more sense now.

    What I think I'm going to do it download tightVNC and sneakily install it on my work PC and access the mac through that.

    I assume the Mac, as well as having an inbuilt VNC client, also has a VNC server so it can listen for the VNC request from my work machine? Is there a default port I need to open on my router and OSX firewall to allow this tunnel-through?

    Cheers.
     
  8. LPZ macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    #8
    In the Sharing Preference Pane enable Screen Sharing. Should use port 5900 by default. OS X will open this port in the firewall when you enable screen sharing.
     
  9. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #9
    You may get hung up using VNC because it might be blocked by your workplace. I tunnel VNC over SSH, which typically isn't blocked. It's also a secure connection (VNC isn't) so you can safely type in passwords and view personal data without fear.

    I use PuTTY for ssh tunneling and TightVNC viewer on the Windows box. The Mac needs ScreenSharing configured to allow VNC access, needs SSH server enabled ("Remote Login" under Sharing), and your home router needs to forward SSH to your home Mac. Google "VNC over SSH" for details.

    An added advantage of this scheme is that with SSH you can use a program line WinSCP to access your home files quickly.

    For Mac-to-Mac access I have VPN set up at home and can screen and file share with no problems. I'd also recommend ShareTool for an easy to set up Mac-to-Mac access.
     
  10. ScoobyMcDoo macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #10
    You can also use logmein, which only requires installing a browser plugin. I think there is also an option of using a java viewer instead of the plugin, but the performance is not as good.
     
  11. Chris.J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2010
    #11
    Thanks for all the great suggestions. I've now managed to get remote access to my Mac from my iPhone but not the work machine. I suspect VNC is blocked.

    I like the idea of tunnelling VNC over SSH. I may try that one next.
     
  12. Chris.J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2010
    #12
    talmy, when you tunnel VNC over SSH, do you use port 22 or 443?

    If you use 443, do you need to adjust your router port forwarding settings to forward the inbound request at 443 to port 22 on the Mac, or can you change the Remote Login (SSH) settings to listen on port 443 instead?

    According to articles on the web, outbound port 22 if often blocked by corporations, hence why I'm trying to use 443 instead.
     
  13. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #13
    Standard port 22. Not blocked where I work. If you need to use another port then, yes, you would have your router map it to 22.
     
  14. Chris.J thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 30, 2010

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