April 8, 2005

Access Your PC From The Road

On the surface, here's what this article is all about:

1. It shows you an easy and proven way to access your
computer while on the road... without lugging a laptop.

2. It details a way you can hold virtual meetings and
collaborate with others over the net.

Access Your PC From The Road

- by Jim Edwards

© Jim Edwards - All Rights reserved

Have you ever sat in front of your computer and wished you
could show someone else what appeared on your screen?

Maybe you were experiencing a problem, or couldn't figure
out how to make something work, but you knew if someone
else could see what was happening on your screen, they
could help you fix the problem immediately.

Ever had a phone conversation with someone about a
particular business topic, but you just couldn't "connect"
with your ideas because it was too hard to explain over the

Now, visualize jumping on the phone with that same person
and literally sharing your computer's desktop to
collaborate, discuss, and create virtually anything
together, even if you are separated by thousands of miles.

Though this may sound like an episode of Star Trek, remote
computer sharing is actually a daily business reality.

Imagine you need to take a trip and you either don't want
to or can't take your computer.

The thought of emails piling up for days makes you crazy
and you also need to monitor some things on your pc.

Instead of trying to lug your laptop (or fit your desktop
into your suitcase), you can use "remote desktop" software
that allows you to access your computer through the
Internet from any other computer in the world.

One of the most common remote desktop services is
GoToMyPC.com, which provides a safe and secure way for you
to go down to the local internet café, log on, and access
your office or home computer just like sitting at your own

Now, before you panic and think anyone can access your
computer, let me explain security.

First, you log in to the GoToMyPC.com website with a
username and password.

Once logged in, you then click a link to log onto your PC,
which will then ask you for another password.

GoToMyPC.com has even thought of a solution for those of
you worried about people looking over your shoulder as you
enter your passwords on a public computer or if the
computer you use might carry a keystroke logger.

Before leaving home, you can program in a series of up to
99 passwords that only work one time.

This means even if someone watches you log into your
computer or records your keystrokes, the password you used
won't work again.

If a would-be thief tries to access your computer too many
times, GoToMyPC.com will shut down all access attempts to
your PC.

The benefits of remotely accessing your PC from the road
are numerous, but the bottom line is that it enables you to
use your computer from the road like you never left home.

For example: while traveling to a conference this weekend,
my wife (and business partner) accessed our office computer
from my laptop and, instead of the usual pile of 4,000
emails that would normally await after 5 days away, we just
picked up this morning like we'd never been gone.

The same company that offers GoToMyPC.com also offers a
service called GoToMeeting.com which allows you to remotely
host a meeting where multiple users can share and
collaborate on a single computer desktop.

This service makes it super simple to provide online
training, do software demos, and even make complete sales

I personally use both of these services and find them easy,
reliable and well worth the price.
Jim Edwards is a syndicated newspaper columnist and the co-
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