PCs

Virtual network computing—free virtual networking software from AT&T

If you're looking for a great product for remotely accessing and controlling computers, check out this free tool.

If you’re a big fan of PCAnywhere, or any other virtual networking software for that matter, you’ve got to try Virtual Network Computing, a.k.a. VNC. The folks at AT&T created VNC, and once you try it, you may never use another product again.

The size of the matter
I was astonished when I first went to download this software. The file’s size was just under 1 MB. That’s right, a program around 1MB. And you get all the files you need—no add-ons to be downloaded and installed. This is the complete package! I was a bit uneasy at first, as nothing this small that I have ever downloaded in the past was very useful to me. This program has definitely put that assumption to rest!

Installing is EASY
After downloading the zipped file from the VNCWeb site , I unzipped the software onto my desktop. There were two folders created. The first folder contained the main VNC program setup, and the other contained the VNCviewer, a remote client used to access VNC from other computers.

I found that the installation on the host PC is extremely simple to complete. All you have to do is double-click the setup icon, tell the program where you’d like it to install, and you’re done! There is absolutely no hassle to install the software. The only thing that you have to do from here is run VNC, set up the user properties for the host machine, supply a password, and then you’re ready to run!

The client PC
My favorite thing about this program is that a client PC doesn’t need software installed in order to access VNC on the host PC. All you need is a blank 3.5 disk and another computer on the same network as the host PC, or a computer that is connected to the Internet, or a Java-enabled Web browser.

You can copy the VNCviewer from the folder that was installed from the .zip file on your desktop to the floppy disk, take that disk to another computer, and run VNCviewer from the A: drive on that machine. The VNCviewer will ask for the IP address or name of the host machine, and then a password. As soon as the correct information is entered, you will see the screen of the host PC on the client machine!

Thanks to a nifty Java client that is included with VNC, you can also access the host PC from another computer using your Web browser. Simply point your browser to the host machine’s IP address, along with the correct port number for the host PC, and enter the password. You will then be able to access the host PC from your Web browser.

Mac OS, Windows, Linux, and more!
As an added bonus to what I felt was a great program, I learned from the AT&T Web site that VNC supports multiple operating systems as well! I believe this feature really sets this software apart from any other virtual network software out there. Not only does it support Windows, but there also is a version for Mac OS, Linux, and others. You can use the software to set up a virtual network with two PCs, as well as a virtual network from a UNIX machine to a Mac, a Mac to a PC, and so on.

Pricing information
The BEST part of this software by far is the price! VNC is absolutely free! The only thing you have to pay for is your Internet connection so that you can download the software.

Interested in VNC?
I hope you are! Visit the VNC Web site , download the software, and try it out for yourself. You won’t be disappointed!
If you try out VNC, we’d like to know what you think. Please post a comment below or send us a note.
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