Access your computer from anywhere – Popular Science

While Apple and Microsoft offer pricy remote tools aimed at IT professionals, anyone can use the free remote-access option that Google built into Chrome. You gain access through your Google account, and the tool employs the same syncing technology that keeps your passwords and login information available in Chrome on multiple platforms. You can get Google’s remote tool for your browser, as an Android app, and even for iOS devices.

Connecting to a computer only takes a few clicks or taps. First, install the web app on the computer you want to access remotely. Then launch the app and click Enable remote connections on the first screen. You need to enter a PIN that will be used to access the computer in future, and on the same screen, you can click the pencil icon next to the device’s default name to replace it with a more meaningful moniker.

Next, turn to the device from which you plan to access your original computer. If you’re on a different computer, launch the web app, and your original machine will appear under the My Computers listing. Click on it, enter the PIN you set earlier, and you’re up and running. The remote machine will open a remote access window, within which you see your original computer’s desktop screen and interact with it via the remote mouse and keyboard. You also get app options to perform tasks such as creating a new window, changing the size of the desktop, and sending a Print Screen command to copy the screen. You can access these options from the icon at the very top left of the remote access window: Click it to open a drop-down menu.

If you’re on a phone or tablet, you use a very similar process to gain access to your original machine. When you fire up the Chrome Remote Desktop app for Android or iOS, you’ll see a list of computers where remote access has been enabled. Tap on any of them to enter the PIN and connect. Drag down from the top of the screen to access mouse and keyboard controls.


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