Review of GoToMyPC - Remote Desktop Control Software
GoToMyPC is a commercial company offering remote access to your pc from any location - provided both are connected to the internet.
Simply sign up for an account and download their software which needs to be run on the PC to be controlled. You will be able to connect to and use that PC from any internet browser, anywhere in the world (subject to you remembering your password and authentication details).
GoToMyPC has been reviewed under a number of number of common criteria. Each of these criteria are also applied to the other remote control solutions that have been reviewed. The criteria are:
- Operating Systems Supported
- Security Considerations
- Where To Get It From
The PC to be controlled must be running Windows. No other operating systems were supported when reviewed.
To install GoToMyPC is a fundamentally a two part process. You need to register on the GoToMyPC website and then download and install the software. The registration process is very quick, with no unnecessary information being asked for. The download of the software was also very slick and carried on naturally from the registration phase.
A normal web browser is used as the client, i.e. a web browser is used to view and control your pc. This means that the PC can be viewed and controlled from any other computer that has a web browser and an internet connection.
When you connect (which you do by logging in at the GotoMyPC website) for the first time you will be asked to download an applet. (The applet will only be downloaded the first time you try to connect from a new computer.) It will then launch an application on the pc showing you the desktop of the remote computer, from this you can control the remote computer. There might be an issue if the local pc that is being used is configured to prevent you from downloading applets.
This makes it very easy to connect to and control the computer from any location in the world. This should make it an attractive proposition for anyone who travels a lot.
What capabilities does GoToMyPC allow?
Maximum number of connections: 1
This means that only one person can connect to the computer at a time.
The console is the desktop used when someone logs in locally to the computer.
Does GoToMyPC allow you to control the console: Yes.
You can only connect to the console. This means that only one person can use the PC at a time. It also means that someone sitting at the computer can see what you are doing.
GoToMyPC allows the pc to be controlled. It does not provide a view-only mode.
Does GoToMyPC allow you to transfer files between the local and remote pcs? Yes.
It is possible to transfer files between the local pc and the pc being controlled.
Security should be a prime consideration when using any remote control software, especially when using over the internet or from a remote pc other than your own.
Firewalls stop incoming connections (unless the appropriate port has been opened), but do not stop outgoing connections. GoToMyPC makes use of this to avoid any firewall issues. From the host pc that is being controlled, GoToMyPC makes an outgoing connection to their servers. Because this is an outgoing connection it will not be blocked by any firewall. At the client end, you open your browser on the gotomypc.com website and from there you can logon to your pc. Thus the pc that is being controlled and the pc running the controlling browser both establish outgoing connections (to the gotomypc.com servers), avoiding any normal firewall considerations.
This makes GoToMyPC ideal if you need to work around a firewall - especially where you have no control over the configuration of that firewall.
It does also mean that GoToMyPC is not suitable when working on an isolated network which has no connection to the internet.
GoToMyPC uses 128bit AES encryption.
To be reported on shortly.
GoToMyPC is a commercial product and subscription based. A free trial is provided. Be aware that at the time of this review, you would need to phone them to cancel the subscription since the ability to cancel was not provided via their website.
To use GoToMyPC go to: Access Your PC from Anywhere - Free Download.
GoToMyPC is an ideal choice if:
- You need to be able to access your pc from anywhere (such as from an airport, a friend's house or internet cafe).
- You do not wish (or are unable) to configure firewalls to enable communication. For example if your pc is location behind a corporate firewall which you have no control over.
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