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280 posts

Ultimate Geek

Topic # 67423 1-Sep-2010 16:47 Send private message

Hi fellow Geekzoners,

My parents are always on the phone to me asking me to guide them through certain stuff.  This gets quite frustrating as they are not that tech-savy.

I would love to be able to remotely control their computer (XP) from my machine (Vista).  So that if they needed help, I could do it for them.

How would I go about setting this up? Is it secure enough so that my parents wont freak out and worry someone else could gain access to their PC?

Does anyone have a good guide as to how to set this up? 

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280 posts

Ultimate Geek

  Reply # 375376 1-Sep-2010 17:14 Send private message

Wheres the edit button gone? lol

I did download this;

As I read Vista Home doesnt enable remote desktop. I installed it and it seems to have enabled it...

I also know my Parents IP address, and have got them to enable remote desktop on their machine. I tried to connect, but it just came back with a disconnection error.

485 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 375380 1-Sep-2010 17:21 Send private message

behind a DSL router?

Pinholed Port 3389 yet?

Otherwise ensured Port 3389 is not firewalled?

280 posts

Ultimate Geek

  Reply # 375396 1-Sep-2010 17:53 Send private message

On their machine?

They use a Dylink ADSL modem yep :)

I should add port 3389 to exception list on their firewall?

485 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 375462 1-Sep-2010 20:03 Send private message

USB or Ethernet connected to the Dynalink?

If Network, you need a pinhole in the router which will forward port 3389 to the internal address (192.168 or 10...) of the PC. Pinhole may be a 'firewall forwarding rule' or some other term depending on the router and firmware version, etc.

You then need an exception for 3389 on their host firewall.

280 posts

Ultimate Geek

  Reply # 375488 1-Sep-2010 20:55 Send private message

Ah ok thanks for the tip! I will do that on their router next time I am over there.

I tried 'Windows Remote Assistance' earlier tonight. got my parents to create an 'invite' which they then sent me. I just got a connection error on that one too, so its probably the same issue.

7644 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 254


  Reply # 375498 1-Sep-2010 21:13 Send private message

There are heaps of services/products that do this sort of thing.

They also can reflect the connection over https via port 80 through their servers so port forwarding and firewalls at each end aren't an issue, eg:

280 posts

Ultimate Geek

  Reply # 376656 4-Sep-2010 17:19 Send private message


I believe I have configured [i]their[/i] modem correctly, (DLink) and opened port 3389. I also did the same thing to the wireless router they have.

I at their place now, but I am still getting the same error 'computer cannot connect to remote computer'. I went through and have double checked everything, and it should be working according to the guides online.

^ thanks for the suggested software, but copilot costs $ to use , and the 'Remote Desktop' function on windows is free.

485 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 376716 4-Sep-2010 21:16 Send private message

you do know that if you're behind NAT you can't connect to your own external IP address, right?  You will not be able to test the success of your configuration changes internally, you need to come at it from outside.

A long long time ago now I wrote up a description of the way ADSL works and the way to get services to work behind it, and put it on my website... it's still there:


Slightly dated but still possibly relevant and helpful...

280 posts

Ultimate Geek

  Reply # 376726 4-Sep-2010 22:13 Send private message

Oh DOH! thank you

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  Reply # 377094 6-Sep-2010 12:16 Send private message

I use team viewer it is free and extremely basic and takes care of all firewall problems for you.
When you start the session it gives you an id number and password that you pass on to the person wanting to connect. All you do is enter those number into the create session panel and in 3 to 5 seconds you have control of their mouse.

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