Brian Vagnoni on 30 Aug 2008 12:18:21 -0700

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Re: [PLUG] Question about Remote Desktop through a NAT


It's really simple it's called call back. He calls you will his computer and then you connect back to him auto-magically. Many remote vnc type clients have it. There are web based services that offer it to. PCAnywhere also does it.

However, if you Dad's wireless router is a Linksys that is from this decade it no doubt has a remote admin port that simply needs to be activated so that you can connect and configure his device for him.

Or you could go the dynamic dns client route and give his computer a domain name like and the track it that way. You would never need to know the ip address again. Dyndns & TZO offer a free service and is mostly likely firmware supported by his router.

Hope that helps.

Brian Vagnoni
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----- Original Message -----
From: Casey Bralla
To: Philadelphia Linux User's Group
Discussion List []
Sent: Sat, 30 Aug
2008 13:58:53 -0400
Subject: [PLUG] Question about Remote Desktop
through a NAT

> I'm not sure I can do what I want, but maybe somebody here has some
> brilliant, 
> yet incredibly elegant and simple idea to help solve my problem.
> My 82 year-old nerd-wannabe dad (actually, he *was* a nerd when he was
> younger, but the world moves too fast...) just loaded Ubuntu on his
> laptop.  
> He often asks for my help, but since I'm 250 miles away, I find that
> Remote 
> Desktop is my best friend.
> He often plugs his computer directly into his cable modem, which is
> great 
> because I can directly access his IP address with VNC.  The problem
> comes 
> when he hooks up the the internet through his wireless router, which
> uses 
> NAT.  
> It is possible, of course, to set the wireless router to port forward
> all 
> incoming VNC connections to a particular NAT'd IP address.  But this
> seems 
> inelegant to me for several reasons:
> 1.  Talking my dad through setting up port forwarding on the router
> will be 
> difficult, since I can't see the setup screens he would be seeing on
> the 
> router, and he doesn't have a clue about how it works.
> 2.  The assigned private IP address may change, thus rendering the
> port 
> forwarding useless
> 3.  There may be visitors at his house who are accessing the wireless,
> and 
> then the assigned IP addresses will be assigned to the wrong computer.
> What I want to do is to have my dad run a "VNC Request" program that
> will 
> weave it's way through his NAT to my static IP address, establishing 
> a "reverse VNC" so I can then control his desktop.
> I've done some google searches for this, but haven't found anything.  
> Is what 
> I want to do even possible?  Does somebody have an other brilliant
> idea?
> TIA, and have a great long weekend!
> -- 
> Casey Bralla
> Chief Nerd in Residence
> The NerdWorld Organisation
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