VPN between mac and a pc available?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by vjaaan, Oct 13, 2010.

  1. vjaaan macrumors 6502

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    Oct 13, 2010
    #1
    On my PC, I used a free vpn program, called VNC, to connect to a computer at another location. Works great. But it does not come in mac version.
    Can anyone recommend a simple, good vpn program I can put on both my mac and that other pc for remote connection?
    I understand there is something that came with my MacBook Pro, but I won't have the same program on the pc.
    Thanks.
     
  2. mulo macrumors 68020

    mulo

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  3. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #3
    Excuse me

    I have always heard remote access to another computer being called VPN.
    Anyway, I want to connect to and work on a computer in a different location (town, not room).
     
  4. mulo macrumors 68020

    mulo

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    #4
    so basically remote desktop? - aka vnc.

    you can connect to any vnc server from any mac.
    simply hit CMD+K in finder
    then type in the IP address of the server like this
    vnc://123.123.123.123/
     
  5. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

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    #5
    Assuming you really want a VNC program, there is Chicken-of-the-VNC you can get for free on the Mac. The Mac already has a VNC server.
     
  6. mulo macrumors 68020

    mulo

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    #6
    chicken of the vnc sucks and lags. use screen sharing - the method described in my previous post.
     
  7. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Remote Desktop is expensive. VNC is a free program which works great. I don't want to spend $300 for something that a simple program can do.
    I am wondering if macs have a similar quality program out there for downloading.
     
  8. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #8
    Looks like some of our responses overlapped in time.
    Thank you for the suggestion about using the mac option with my VNC on the other computer.
    I will try that.
     
  9. plinden macrumors 68040

    plinden

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    #9
    View Mac on PC : download a VNC viewer like TightVNC, enable screen sharing on Mac, start VNC viewer on PC and enter <IP address>:0 (or <Host>:0)

    View PC on Mac: Do what was suggested above

    Total cost: $0
     
  10. bmcgonag macrumors 65816

    bmcgonag

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    #10
    If you haven't heard of TeamViewer it is Mac, PC, Linux compatible VNC program that also has Presentation sharing, VPN between PCs, Chat, etc. It's a great program, free for personal use (not for IT based support), and is easy to install and configure.

    IF you create an account on TeamViewer site, it will link with each copy you install on whatever system, you can then add systems to it, and easily connect to any of them with a couple of clicks.

    It's quite fast, and easy to use.

    Brian
     
  11. south8212 macrumors 6502

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  12. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 13, 2010
    #12
    Thank you all for the great suggestions. It is good to have the personal recommendations for some of these options.
    Now I just have to get back over to that other computer at my mother's house and set things up again. I don't know why, but every few months the connection shuts down on her end. I go over, check all the ports, nothing has been changed. Eventually I get it working again, but by then I have done so many things I never know how I fixed it (or why it stopped accepting contact in the first place).
     
  13. rjt1000 macrumors newbie

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    #13
  14. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #14
    It won't work for what the OP is asking. First, it has to be initiated and accepted on both ends, which doesn't help if the remote computer is unattended. Also, you can only see the desktop, but you can't control it. Great for presentations, but it's only screen sharing, not desktop sharing with remote control.

    I also recommend TeamViewer, since I use it daily between Macs and PCs.
     
  15. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #15
    I'm going to try a couple of these suggestions Sunday when I get to the other computer.
    I'm hoping that me using my mac laptop on the same wifi won't conflict with my test. I have noticed in the past that my VNC program worked differently when I was physically in that house (I think it was a false positive I got, hooking me right up, through a different IP address than I would have had to use from another location.).
    Actually, hmmmm, maybe I can test it right now with one of my own home computers. Unless than "false positive" action plays a role.....

    Thanks so much to all for answering. These forums are a wonderful way of sharing information.
     
  16. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #16
    Teamviewer question

    I have started a Teamviewer session between two of my home computer. But I had to be there to type the codes in on the computer I am viewing.
    There is supposed to be an option on the signin page to allow Configure Permanent Access to the Computer, but it is not there.
    I am still looking for that option, but could this be a limitation with the mac version?
     
  17. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #17
    No, there's no limitation on the Mac version.
    1. On the computer you want to control, make a note of the ID that appears under "Wait for session" on the main TV window.
    2. Open TeamViewer Preferences > General > Startup and enter a password. Make a note of the password, and close Preferences.
    3. Make sure that TV is set to run on startup. On Windows, there's an option to check in Preferences to start TV with Windows. On the Mac, add TV to your login items.
    4. Now you can connect to that computer anytime you wish, entering the ID and password under "Create session"
    There are also support resources on the TeamViewer support page. It's a good idea to read the manual.
     
  18. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 13, 2010
    #18
    I am still reading through the program manual online, but besides the problem I mentioned above, I notice that when I end a session, the remote computer is left with a popup announcement that someone there has to close. It also has a popup note when the session begins. Since my purpose in controlling my mother's computer is that she is no longer capable of handling any messages or windows other than her basic stuff, I need a cleaner program, that adds nothing to her screen.
    I'm still working to resolve these issues, but if anyone knows if these things are even possible, I'd love to know to save time.
    Thanks so much.
     
  19. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #19
    You get the popup at the end of a session if you're using the free version. The paid version has no such popup. It's really not a problem, though. Just let her know if she ever sees the popup, just close it. The popup in the lower right corner when you connect is a security feature, letting the other person know you've connected to their computer. Most people would want to know if someone is remotely accessing their computer.
     
  20. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #20
    Thanks. I can quit looking for that solution now.
    I am indeed using the free version.
     
  21. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 13, 2010
    #21
    remote desktop option

    In trying this between my two home computers, I cannot connect. I am using the IP address from my host computer. For Host name, I have tried the Computer Name from that host, and a few others.

    That computer (host) is a Windows XP. I turned the firewalls off.

    Anything obvious that I am doing wrong? I have tried having my VNC Server application running on the host, and I tried "remote Desktop" from my windows system (which I have never been able to work).
     
  22. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 13, 2010
    #22
    I am at the location of the remote PC now, and trying to connect using the Command-K in Finder and typing the vnc:// IP address as directed above.
    I get the box asking for the Host name (which I assume is the Computer Name of the PC) and I type that. The bar runs showing it is trying to connect.
    One error message mentions telling host computer to allow file sharing, but I only find options for that where it is trying to be the computer doing the connecting.
    I used to run VNC between my old PC laptop to this host PC for many months. One day I could not connect. Nothing changed in the host setup, but the computer might have been rebooted. That should not have turned off the ability to receive the VNC connection. I worked for a day fiddling with everything I could think of, finally got it working, but by then had no idea with thing worked.
    If anyone has any ideas what I can do while I am here, I'd love to hear them.
     
  23. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #23
    It's precisely these kinds of problems that so many have while trying to set up VNC that make me recommend TeamViewer. It's very simple to set up, even for a novice. I routinely walk computer-illiterate clients through the setup and connect to their systems in less than a minute. Of course, you can choose whatever method you prefer, but with TeamViewer, you would have been already connected during all the time you're trying to make VNC work.
     
  24. vjaaan thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 13, 2010
    #24
    I already set up Teamviewer and got it running.
    It has features I do not like.
    It leaves windows open on the remote computer, for one, which we screw up my elderly mother.
    VNC worked so well before, and there was no disruption on the remote computer. Nothing to stress her out.
     
  25. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #25
    Fair enough. As I said, choose what you like. Just for clarification, it only leaves one pop-up window open at the end of a session, which can easily be closed without affecting anything.
     

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