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VNC

(Virtual Network Computing) Open source remote control software that lets someone take control of another user's computer in a distant location. Running under popular operating systems as well as Java, there are numerous VNC applications, both free and commercial, including UltraVNC (www.ultravnc.com), TeamViewer (www.teamviewer.com), ShowMyPC (www.showmypc.com) and RealVNC (www.vnc.com), the latter maintained by some of the original developers of the software.

Developed at Olivetti & Oracle Research Labs in the U.K. in the late 1990s, the Labs were acquired by AT&T in 1999. See remote control software.




VNC Remote Control
A VNC server is the host being accessed, while the VNC client is the controlling and viewing computer.






remote control software

Software that lets someone take control of another user's computer in a distant location. Only keystrokes, mouse movement and screen changes are passed between the client "controlling" computer and host "controlled" computer. All application processing takes place in the host (see illustration below).

Remote control is the only effective way support reps can troubleshoot serious problems with a user's computer in another location, and the Internet has made it simple. The software is installed at both ends, and both the user and the technician see the same screen and can run the machine. Remote control is also used to provide training to a remote user who can watch and imitate the actions on screen by the remote instructor. In addition, remote control provides a shared desktop that lets two users collaborate on drawings and other visual objects. Also called "remote access software," "remote desktop sharing," "desktop sharing" and "application sharing." See application sharing, Remote Desktop and VNC.




Share the Desktop
Remote control software lets a computer be shared with someone else simultaneously.








Getting Assistance Is a Snap
In this example, the Windows XP user (top) downloaded and ran ShowMyPC, clicked "Show My PC Now" and waited for the session password, which he gave to the support rep by email. The technician ran ShowMyPC on his Vista machine (bottom), selected "View Remote PC" and typed in the password, which gave him full control of the XP desktop as if he were at the machine.






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