Expert VNC - An Independent Review
Mon Jun 2 15:50:43 2003
I agree, expert users will probably be able to do much of what Expert VNC offers themselves. I reviewed it only to help people with
their questions, and to get a better understanding of the product myself.
The files that I executed were "viewerdemo.exe" 126kb and "serverdemo.exe" 265kb, it appears these are compressed executables, that
launch the program, probably putting the files in a temporary directory, not found where yet, but it creates a directory under 'c:\vnc'
however it only extracts a readme file to this directory.
The only other method I tried to connect to her was me trying to connect to her using my standard VNC. Is it possible to do it another
way? If so I'll try that, I haven't played around with VNCs other options to much as we use just the standard VNC over a network here,
which works fine anyway, only time I've needed additional functionality was connecting to my friend at uni, and this was the option at
hand at the time! I'll try the "Add New Client" option!
I'm not really a VNC expert, I thought it would be a good idea for a basic user like me to review it, then for Joel to get an expert
user to review it as well. I just thought it would be useful for someone to demo the program and tell others, as there seemed to be
such an uproar about it.
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Sent by: Subject: Re: Expert VNC - An Independent Review
Thank you for providing a review. Would it be possible to get more
technical info from you about this product?
> Expert VNC - An Independent Review
> After Joel Bomgaars posted his topic advertising Expert VNC to the list,
> there was quite a bit of controversy over it, weather it
> legal, secure, the cost, etc.
> I too posted a reply, asking a few questions regarding these issues, at
> which point Joel offered to give me a demo copy, to test, and
> give an independent review.
> So I did!
> How did I demo the program? Well I have a friend who at Uni in Portsmouth
> (UK), her net connection is behind a firewall, which allows
> outgoing traffic, but blocks incoming.
It would be interesting to hear what other methods you have used to try to
connect to her in the past.
> I emailed her the server demo (which is only 265k), and ran my viewer
> demo (126k).
Are these the size of an "install" program or the actually executables?
> When she opened the server demo, I gave her my IP
> address, which she entered into the connection box. This then goes out
> through her firewall, and connects to my viewer.
This sounds like the "Add New Client" functionality already in RealVNC.
> This means
> there is pretty good security, you can't connect to a users PC, with out
> them running the server, and then entering your IP address.
This can be accomplished by unchecking "Accept socket connections". That
makes it so the server can only be used via the above mentioned "Add New
> Is it legal? Again I'm no expert, but VNC is open source, and distributed
> under the GNU General Public License and none of the original
> VNC files have been modified, so as far as I can see, yes!
If the size values given above are for the executables something is
different than RealVNC (vncviewer - 228k, WinVNC+vnchooks.dll - 384K). If
they are the size of setup programs there must not be much to the
additional scripts that the author has said contain the "Expert VNC"
functions. What files are you actually executing to start the connection
and receive the connection?
> However, I think the cost per license ($495) is maybe a little on the
> steep side, I'm sure more people would be interested, if the cost
> were halved or something, or the pricing scheme re-worked/re-worded, so
> you get the server for free, but host you pay for.
I think that part of the VNC community might be interested. Most would be
able to set up their own tunneling with stunnel, SSH, Zeebede, etc and get
encryption of the traffic as a bonus.
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