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TightVNC is a program that allows to control and connect to remote computers.

Remote connections has become something indispensable in many computer support companies. This is because, thanks to remote connection, the IT expertet can connect to the customer's computer and manage it as if he were sitting in in front the PC. That is to say, IT expert can move the client's PC mouse using his own mouse, and the same thing happens with the keyboard. So IT expert will be able to manage client's Operating System with total freedom, regardless of the distance between client's computer and IT expert's computer.

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TightVNC allows our computer to be controlled by other user remotely, and at the same time, allows us to control other computers remotely.

This software installs two programs:

  • Client: Client allows us to connect to other computers that have a VNC server installed. The remote server can be any VNC (Virtual Network Computing) server, so is not mandatory to use a TightVNC server. For example, we can connect with TightVNC client to a Mac computer (Mac OS X Leopard 10.5 or higher), enabling the “Share screen” Mac option.
  • Server: TightVNC server will be installed on those computers that are going to be controlled remotely. For example, if a friend has a problem with Windows System, and we want to see what happens on his computer, we will ask him to install TightVNC server on his PC, and we will use the client to connect to his Computer and investigate what happens.

Software installation and configuration is simple. When server is installed, it will prompt a password that is used to protect the access to the computer. This password should be known by the person who wants to connect remotely to the server.

When we launch the client, it asks for the Host address (server) to connect, and the port (5900 by default). Clicking on “Connect” button we'll access to the remote machine. A new window will be displayed that shows the remote PC's desktop, and using our keyboard and mouse, we will control the remote computer.
Copy files between client and server is something simple, thanks to “File Transfers System”, that is included in the program. When we launched file transfers system, we will see a window divided in two panels. Left panel belongs to local computer (client), and right panel belongs to remote computer (server). We can navigate through any of the panels and copy files from one PC to another. Keep in mind the files copy process will take more time, as files should be transmitted over the Internet.

Server can be configured to accept only a selection of IPs or a range of IPs. This is very useful to avoid possible intrusion.
Another interesting option of the server, is the ability to configure “extra ports”. The server normally listens on a single port (5900), but we can configure the server to listen on additional ports (5901, 5902, etc). Each of these ports will be configured to display a portion of the screen. For example, the client that connects to port 5901 will see only a 640x480 area of the top-left screen.

The program is free and is available for Windows and Linux.

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