How to Remote Control a PC
Have you got a friend or relative who has a computer but doesn't really know how
to maintain it ? Do you have to keep popping round ?
Well, in this guide I'm going to explain from start to finish, how to setup their computer and yours, so that you can see their computer screen on yours, and control it from the comfort of your own home. Then you'll be able to do all those little maintenance jobs, and install things for them. This works on dial-up, but is a bit slow, although quite workable.
Summary of what you're going to do
Things to do on your friends computer:
- Install TightVNC - this is the server program that runs on your friends computer and allows you to login to it.
- Install StartRight - this makes sure TightVNC starts after ZoneAlarm, and works right.
- Register with No-IP and create a domain name - this will allow you to connect to your friends computer by using a fixed name rather than a varying IP address.
- Install the No-IP client program - this tells the No-IP server your friends current IP address.
Things to do on your computer:
- Install Tight VNC - this is the browser program that lets you see your friends computer.
- Try it !
Install TightVNC on your friends computer
Download.com TightVNC 1.2.5 download page and click on 'Download Now'. I
suggest for a simple system, you download it into a folder called 'downloads' in
your 'My Documents' folder. Virus check it, and then run it.
You'll need to enter a nice long random password in the 'WinVNC: Current User Properties' window. The default setup should be fine.
When VNC is running you'll get a 'V' icon in the taskbar. Right click and select properties to alter the password.
Install StartRight on your friends computer
Visit this joejoesoft download page and click on 'StartRight v1.2.7 ZIP [300KB]'. Save it in your 'downloads' folder. You'll have to unzip it. Extract it into C:\Program Files\StartRight. This is important for it to work right. Check for viruses, and then run the StartRight.exe file. In the setup window, move ZoneAalarm to near the top, and put TightVNC at the bottom, and set the delay to 10000ms. This will ensure that TightVNC starts after Zone Alarm is all started fully. If not TightVNC won't work.
Register with No-IP
Visit the http://www.no-ip.com
website, and register with your email address. Not your friends. You'll want to
be able to manage it.
When you've logged in, click on 'Add', and then enter 'fredbloggs' (you chose a name) in the first field, and select the say 'no-ip.info'. Leave the 'Host Type' on 'DNS Host (A)'. Then just click on 'Create Host'. Logout.
Install No-IP on your friends computer
Visit this www.download.com No-IP client program download page and click on 'Download Now'. It's 622KB. Save, virus check and rename it to something you'll recognise later. I suggest 'No-IP client ducsetup.exe'. Run it, and enter the email address and password for the account you've created with No-IP. In 'Options' tick the 'Run on Startup' box. You should have the domain name listed with a smiley face.
Install TightVNC on your computer
Repeat the procedure for installing TightVNC but on your computer this time.
Enter your own very long random password. It doesn't actually matter that your
VNC won't let others control your computer. So you don't need StartRight, or
No-IP for your machine.
You should have the TightVNC files in C:\Program Files\TightVNC. Create shortcut on your desktop for the viewer vncviewer.exe.
Now to try it
Well, I think it's now time to see if all that was done right !
First, your friends computer should be connected to the internet. Hopefully, TightVNC is running and waiting for login requests. Also the No-IP server has received the latest IP address of your friends computer. On dial-up this changes every dial-up. That's why we've used No-IP.
Run the VNC Viewer. You'll be asked for an IP address. Type in 'fredbloggs.no-ip.info'. Click OK. If it's working you should be asked for a password. Enter the password you setup on your friends computer for TightVNC access.
If i doesn't work, you can try getting your friend to email you. If you look at the details of the email, you'll be able to see their IP address. Assuming it's from a client program like Outlook Express or Incredimail, and not from Yahoo etc. Try that as the IP address. If that doesn't work, get your friend to 'exit' TightVNC and restart it manually.
I hope you find that useful.