Sunday, December 31, 2006

LogMeIn (Toronto - Sunday Morning)

I'm in my Toronto hotel room trying to use this slightly ancient Dell Latitude someone gave me (gave me) a couple of years ago (since this wasn't a work trip and I was leaving the country I decided maybe I'd leave the company-issued laptop at home). I'm running Windows 2000 (it originally had Windows ME - a certifiable piece of shit) and it is slooooooow. Especially after I installed antivirus software. The poor old thing only has 96 meg of memory and swaps like a mad thing.

After several frustrating bouts of trying to speed things up I got the bright idea of connecting up with my computer at home using a free tool called LogMeIn. Although they have several commercially supported services for large enterprises, they also have a free (free as in free beer, not free speech) version for the small fish user.

So I'm logged into my home office computer, which is more responsive than trying to do it from the poor sad Dell Latitude, which I am essentially only using as a terminal. Very similar to VNC, but web-based, and it will operate through my firewall. Though the target (controlled) computer must be Windows-based, you can control it with any web-connected computer capable of running Java (including Linux, Mac or even Pocket PC - I haven't tried with my cell phone).

Did I mention it was free?

They also have another product called Hamachi that allows for setting up a free zero-configuration VPN. I've tried this too -- works well.

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