Conferencing with VNC
S. I. Becker
stewart "at" sibecker.co.uk
Fri Feb 10 17:29:05 2006
> Can someone help please.
> I require remote access software for my small business.
> I am considering using the Free edition but I am not sure if it will offer
> the two features that I am interested in, these are:
> 1)The abilitiy to remote access a customers PC and offer them technical
> support remotely. This I understand is available
> 2)I require customers to be able to be able to view my PC screen so I
> demonstrate software or offer tuition remotely.
> Can you please advise if this is possible with the Free software.
Yes, and I'm looking at doing the same myself, so I'm aware of some of the
1) Yes, provided that your customers have installed a VNC Server. You can
distribute the Free version to your customers if you want, provided you
follow the rules set out in the GPL.
2) Yes, all your client requires is a Java enabled browser, but can also use
a VNC viewer. First set up your VNC server, and configure it so that
incoming connections cannot control your PC, but only view it. In RealVNC
under Windows, you do this by going to the Options dialogue, going to the
Inputs page and unticking everything on that page. While you're there look
at the Sharing page if you want to allow more than one potential customer to
view your screen at a time. Select the "Always treat new connections as
shared" option and untick the "Non-shared connections replace existing ones"
box. However, be aware that using sharing can tend to slow things down a
You may need to check whether you are behind a router, and configure that
router to forward port 5800 (and port 5900 for standard VNC connections) to
Then your client types the following in their web-brower:
replacing "your.external.address" with either the ip address or external
name of your computer, and then enters the password needed to connect (if
you set one).
NB Some of your potential customers may have firewalls which block outgoing
connections higher port numbers like this of this type, which some of your
clients might have. In that case, you can change the port on which you
serve the java/http server in VNC from 5800 to one that is more likely to be
let through (e.g. 80), and have your clients connect to:
instead. (If you choose 80, then the ":80" bit can be removed, but if you
choose any other number then you need to keep the ":number" in there). The
port number can be changed by going to Options -> Connections -> Serve Java
viewer via HTTP on port: ____. It defaults to 100 less than what you set
the standard port to, but can be changed to anything you wish.
HTH (and hope I'm not teaching you to suck eggs either) and sorry for the
delay in replying.