Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Free "Remote Desktop" Setup for Windows Home Editions

As you might already know, all Windows Home Edition variants don't support Microsoft Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Remote_Desktop_Protocol. Therefore, you need different software stack as a solution to the problem.

Enter VNC (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_Network_Computing). VNC is another protocol to remotely control Windows desktop. VNC can be used as RDP replacement, especially, if you want to control Windows Home desktop from Linux. This is a verified setup that I have tested:

  • The VNC client, i.e. the machine that will be used to control the Windows Home desktop, runs Linux. In my case it's a XFCE4 window manager. I'm using Vinagre (https://wiki.gnome.org/Apps/Vinagre/) as the client application to access the remote VNC server. 
  • The VNC server, i.e. the machine that runs Windows Home OS, is running TigerVNC(http://tigervnc.org) as the application that implements VNC server functionality. TigerVNC is very well maintained as you can see in their github page: https://github.com/TigerVNC/tigervnc.
Hopefully, this is helpful for those thinking about remotely controlling a Windows Home desktop machine.
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