“I had a situation where I needed to control two computers over the Internet. The best solution for me was to use VNC networking technology. VNC stands for Virtual Network Computer and is a real nice way to remotely control computers through a GUI interface in which you see the remote desktop. I tried all of the Mac OS X VNC clients I came across and from my experience Chicken of the VNC is the way to go.”
Review: Chicken of the VNC
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2006-02-15 4:55 pmdiginux
nxserver is extremely nice. It is very efficient, and works over DSL(400kbps) without strain at all. From what they say, it even works over a modem, but I have not tried that.
Bottom line is, its quicker than vnc, or even windows remote desktop. Also, you don’t need an active server, it just runs by connecting through ssh, then starting the server on-demand.
With SSL encryption, and how efficient nx is, I see no reason to ever use VNC again.
In my experience too NX is much much faster and pleasant to work with. Administrating a remote machine is a very smooth experience. The only disadvantage is that the NX server is a paid for product, while all the clients are free (as in beer). They’re at http://www.nomachine.com/
There is, however, a free & open server product based on the NX protocol called FreeNX
Last time I tried out that was at least half a year ago on a Fedora machine and on a SuSE machine, both a bit of a hassle to get working.
I am suprised anyone uses just VNC, tightvnc based on vnc is twice as fast. I use use eclipse on a solaris box over a DSL connection with no problems.
2006-02-16 10:40 pmmacintroll
What do you mean by “just vnc”? Tightvnc is just one encoding option for vnc. “Chicken of the VNC” supports most encodings, including tightvnc.
When I use a 4.0+ RealVNC client and connect to a 4.0+ RealVNC server, performance is wonderful because of the non VNC standard optimizations. However, connecting to a generic VNC server (3.3 protocol) is quite slow. TightVNC was the same way for me last time I used it. It was fast connecting to it’s own server, but none too quick connecting to a generic server. I use RealVNC to administer automation computers at work, and it works much better than the PC Connect 9 that we used to use. I should check into FreeNX however, as it does sound fast.
Nevermind……NX doesn’t seem to have a server version for Windows….which is what I need to administer…….
I’ll keep looking
2006-02-15 9:51 pmMurrell
If you want to access a Windows box, your best bet is to activate the RDP server (Under Control Panel -> System), and use rdesktop (Linux/Mac) or Remote Desktop Client (Windows) to access it.
I’ve searched a bit, and aparently NX is all about X11, so a Windows version would be mostly impossible. Too bad, I could have used some extra speed, but general cross-platform compatibility will have to do.
2006-02-16 1:35 amcr8dle2grave
You are correct. NX is a compression and caching protocol for X11, but it also has the ability to proxy RDP, ICA (Citrix), and VNC protocols as well, which will result in noticable improvements for both RDP and VNC (NX and ICA are pretty comparable already).
I have a couple questions:
1)Is there a remote desktop server for Linux?
2)I would also need a remote desktop server for NT4….
That’s why I’ve been using VNC so far, it just works on so many different platforms that I have/choose to deal with. Previously I’ve used PC Anywhere but now that I use Linux at home that’s no longer an option. And PCA sucks too
2006-02-16 1:38 amcr8dle2grave
Is there a remote desktop server for Linux?
Nope. RDP is windows only on the server side.
I would also need a remote desktop server for NT4….
Sorry, but your only options here are VNC or Citrix, and Citrix is way too expensive to justify using just for remote admin.
2006-02-16 2:03 pmjmal
MS did release Win NT 4.0 Terminal Server edition. Now, finding it, or updating a running instance of NT4 with the Term-server components is beyond my ken.
as much as freenx is nice in terms of maintaining since it only uses ssh port, you come to situation when only vnc is allowed/needed, namely mac os x or when you want to touch the session that is running on the real screen. Windows got RDP with native client, Linux has NX(though suspend/resume is a bit tricky atm when VNC is perfect at it) or TightVNC which are both just as fast as using a computer in front of you, but to do similar thing on Mac, you need to use VNC, and it is slow and with my Tiger, VNC sometimes hang itself and I need to relaunch VNC server to continue doing a stuff…yes I need to ssh in there or go to the real screen and fix it… It’s sad Mac OS is so terrible when it comes to remote desktop, and I never tried their Apple Remote Desktop, because it even costs you $100 or so…
At Uni we have a student run lab full of some very obscure platforms. We also happen to use VNC, and (free)NX. VNC is fantastic for giving us access to those machines, while NX has been great for giving our 486s a second life as thin clients. I have used the Chicken for a while now on our Macs, and have also found it very stable – if only we could get a server running too.
2006-02-16 12:51 pmMarlor
If you want a VNC server for OS X, OSXVNC (http://www.redstonesoftware.com/vnc.html) is the best option I have found. However, like in Windows, the client takes control of the machine, so it is a little limited compared to VNC under Linux.
I’ve worked in an environment where all users log on to a MS Remote Desktop environment across a consumer level internet connection (2/0.5Mb).
For roughly 10 users this is perfectly acceptable except when the internet connection suffers because of external factors.
In terms of connecting everyone to a single off site server this works quite while, as only one server needs to be managed across several sites. Of course it’s not a particularly good use of local resources (e.g. 3GHs desktops not performing anywhere near optimal levels but then again who needs 3GHz for word processing/email?)
Then again if the local computer is particularly low spec it’s a great way of using it as a dumb terminal and giving the user on the low spec computer a considerable speed boost.
As MS made sure that only the Server version of their OS allows more than one simultaneous active desktop VNC might be a great alternative for non Server environments.
Running vnc from a reasonably fast XP machine to a Linux machine (PIII, 1Ghz) over a crossed ethernet cable, and performance was ok for maintenance, but definitely not for using seriously. Both machines were perfectly acceptable in standalone mode So I went to a kdm unit. and am very happy with it. But apparently nxserver, which I haven’t yet tried, is much better. A recent review somewhere. I’ve heard of other cases where people gave up on VNC based on performance – in fact, from mac to windows was one.
Be interested to know if anyone has tried nxserver, and if so, what their impressions were.