ScreenConnect Shifts Remote Support From the Cloud Back to the Desktop

By Frank J. Ohlhorst  |  Posted 2013-06-09 Print this article Print

Security can be enhanced by choosing to use a unique code number or even by setting the session to work on invitations only.

Once the remote system connects, the ScreenConnect client application launches, which allowed me to take over the remote system. You can pull down a handy toolbar, which allowed me to control nearly anything on the remote system, transfer files, and even reboot and reconnect to the remote system.

Once the connection is initialized, the remote user did not even have to be present for me to perform any management task on the remote system. I particularly like the ability to record the session so that a support session could become a future educational video for other help desk operators.

Other remote options include blanking the screen of the remote system, locking out the remote user to prevent interference, rebooting to safe mode, and several other helpful tools. I was even able to switch the screen-sharing relationship, giving the remote user control of my system instead.

Creating a meeting was just as easy. All it took was clicking on the "new meeting" link, and I was able to create a session for a meeting, I was able to send out an invitation via email and others were able to join the meeting by simply clicking on the link. The product offers the typical meeting tools, such as the ability to share desktops, push presentations, chat, multicast and so on.

However, the meeting application does not offer voice over IP (VOIP) or video conferencing at this time. They would be most welcome features in the future, allowing ScreenConnect to transform into a voice and video meeting platform.

Finally, I would be remiss if I did not mention one of the product's more unique features, remote control. Much like GoToMyPC, LogMeIn or PCanywhere, ScreenConnect offers the ability to remotely use other systems.

The way it works is ScreenConnect installs a small client application on the target (host) system. Then users are able to locate that system on a list on the ScreenConnect server. All they need to do is click on the appropriate system and viola, they are able to remotely control that system.

I found it to be a great tool for managing some servers and other systems remotely from my laptop. This eliminated the need to set up virtual networking or pay for a service to remotely access machines during travel, or if I am just too lazy to get up from my desk and walk down to the server room.

Of course, there is really nothing overly unique about ScreenConnect. There are plenty of products and services on the market that can do what the package does. However, ScreenConnect does stand out when one realizes it is not a subscription service and that the product can be completely contained within a LAN, eliminating many of the security worries associated with hosted services.

What's more, the product combines the primary elements that remote users and help desks look for—remote support, virtual meetings and remote control—all for a single, affordable price that makes sense for businesses both large and small.

ScreenConnect is only bound to get better. Elsinore Technologies continually adds new features and capabilities, and improves the code and provides frequent updates to registered customers. If the company chooses to add VOIP and video conferencing capabilities, ScreenConnect will be able to take on the likes of GoToMeeting, and even Google Hangouts, making it a one-stop solution for most any business looking to move away from expensive subscriptions services.



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