Chrome Remote Desktop

This is a reasonably secure and simple tool provided by Google as an add-on extension to their "Chrome" browser.  It is very easy to install and use, and can be utilized as an alternative mechanism for Adminsoft to provide you with remote support.  However, you can also use it to access your work computer from home or another remote location.  (It does not have a 'file transfer' facility, but you can usually achieve this by sending files as attachments to email if you want to work on something off-line at home - just don't forget to send them back to your work computer when you have finished.)

While you do need to run Chrome in order to use this facility, you do not have to make Chrome your 'default browser' if you prefer to use something else (like FireFox, Edge, or Internet Explorer).

You can read more about this tool at:  https://remotedesktop.google.com/

Remote Support by Adminsoft

Simply go to the special "Chrome Remote Desktop" website:   https://remotedesktop.google.com/support

Click on the "Generate Code" button.  This will generate a unique set of numbers which is the temporary access code for your computer.  Simply dictate these numbers to us over the phone.

 

Remote Access to your Work Computer

This facility enables you to access your work computer, from your computer at home, from a tablet (perhaps out in the field), or even from your phone.  The screen is relayed to your other computer or device, and touch-screen / mouse and keystrokes are relayed back to your work computer as if you were using its mouse and keyboard.

In the first instance, we recommend that you discuss this with your normal IT support provider.  They may prefer that you use Windows Remote Desktop over your VPN.  (These days, this Microsoft facility can work from any device - including Android and Apple).  Alternatively, they could endorse use of Google's Chrome Remote Desktop for this, and even set it up for you.

Assuming that they approve of the Google option, but you will set it up for yourself, then it is a relatively simple facility to implement:


Using Chrome Remote Desktop to access your work computer from home

  • If you will not need to access your work computer remotely for several days, then you can disable this extension in your Chrome browser of work computer for added safety.  (While Chrome Remote Desktop is reasonably secure, it is just good computing practice not to leave any remote access facility open unnecessarily.)  You can easily enable it again later, when you want to start using it again (from the work computer itself - you obviously cannot do it remotely).
  • If you want to have a remote session in the evening (or weekend), then you understandably must leave your work computer running when you depart the office, with Chrome Remote Desktop enabled.

Access from Home

  • At home you need to install the Chrome Remote Desktop extension (if you have not already done so), using the same procedure as described for the work computer.
  • You must add your work Google / Chrome account to your Chrome accounts on your home computer.  You will use this to access your work computer remotely (and won't be able to see it using any other account.)  When it offers to do so, select the option to create a shortcut for this account on your Windows desktop.  (This provides a convenient method to launch Chrome signed into your Work Chrome account.  You can also create a shortcut to launch Chrome with your personal Chrome account.)
  • Sign-in to Chrome Apps using your Work account (or "Switch person" by clicking on the account name that displays at the top right of the Chrome title bar.  Note:  If you have two (or more) Google accounts on your home computer, you must use your work one to access your work computer.  (You will not be able to see your work computer if you are logged in to a different account.)
  • Go to https://remotedesktop.google.com/access
  • Your work computer should be displayed. Click on it to establish a remote connection.

Allow multiple users to access a spare computer from their home

If you have a spare computer sitting around, it may be useful to allow certain personnel to access it remotely on an ad hoc basis.  (They will not be able to do so simultaneously!!!)  For instance, this would let these individuals fill in their timesheet from home, because they did not go back to the office after a site visit.  Or it might let a staff member access Adminsoft using a notebook computer over their motel's WIFI (or better still, using mobile data through their phone), if they are spending a few days in a distant town to work on a job there.

  • Create a special Chrome account for the spare computer. If Outlook is configured with a unique email account on that computer, you can use this email address as the Chrome account.  Otherwise, you can create a special gmail account for this purpose (your call whether this is meaningfully named, or very cryptic).
  • Launch Chrome and sign in to this special account.
  • Follow all the procedures as per the previous section (Using Chrome Remote Desktop to access your work computer from home).  However, you will obviously need to repeat the 'Access from Home' steps on each person's notebook (or home computer), so that it can be used for this purpose.