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remote access options

  • currently we use citrix xenserver web version for 25 users, to run their apps. But when we get a snow day everyone works from home, granted not many people need to access the server at once but with about 75 users it is challenging with licensing. What other inexpensive options are out there, oh and a good portion of users have Mac's. Getting the citrix client is challenging for some users to get it working on their home computer.

    What I would really like to do is to create some sort of employee portal.

    TX

    Andrew

  • LogMeIn has a free version that allows you to remote your work machine from home. So if everyone created there own account and installed the client on the work machine = less admin work for you. No need to maintain Citrix infrastructure.

    Carlos

  • I would consider purchasing LogMeIn Central (its usually $299 a year).  This would allow you to control who had access to the computers and when.  You can also create a deployment package that contains an email link for users to do a self install of LogMeIn Free on their PC and their access is controlled by their work email account.  You can still use the LogMeIn Free as a good method of granting access to work PCs for staff - but placing LogMeIn Central on top of it makes it much nicer for an administrator.

    Chris Shipley
    Nutmeg Consulting

  • Hi Andrew, both Carlos and Chris give some good advice.  If you are looking for something a bit more elaborate, there are appliances readily available to set up web portals.  Our org has a Sonicwall SSL vpn appliance that users can access via a web browser.  (Cisco and Barracuda offer a similar device.)  They hit our address, log in, and have bookmarks to where they are authorized.  We give all users  Outlook web access and some get bookmarks to their desktops.  Our IT staff have bookmarks to all the servers and important equipment.  It has worked great for us for the past 3 years.  If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

    Best of luck,

    Gary

    Gary Network/Systems Admin Berlin, NH
    Host Non-profit Tech Careers, Security Forums
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  • This is a very current issue for us as we had a very old apple computer used as remote access but it died.  Our issue is that we have large graphic files that our designers would like to access.  Does LogMeIn handle large file transfers, or is that more a matter of our internet service? (Can you tell I'm rather low in the tech understanding hierarchy?!)

    Thanks for any assistance

  • LogMein free doesn't allow file transfers, but LogMeIn pro does.  As you probably know LogMeIn is for remote access.  Your internet service is just the pipe that allows the connection.  I hope this clarifies things for you a bit.  If you have any further questions on this, please don't hesitate to post them. 

    Best of luck,

    Gary 

    Gary Network/Systems Admin Berlin, NH
    Host Non-profit Tech Careers, Security Forums
    Co-Host Networks, Hardware, & Telecommunications Forum

  • For remote access, I'm actually planning on utilizing PPTP VPN on my pfSense Router (free) along with remote desktop (available Free on Mac & PC) Anyone see a problem with that?

     

    Philip

  • We use pfSense for VPN over PPTP, but would like to move to OpenVPN option due to data compression availability.  I love pfSense as a firewall with all built-in or free add-on management features and packaged software.  Highly recommend this to anyone wanting to save money.  Setup any PC or Server with 2+ NICs and as memory as you can do and you are golden.  www.pfsense.org There is a great support forum and paid support if you need it.

    To comment on other's questions - As far as data transfers you are only has fast as your Internet connection, but ideally you will want to remote into your computer and do the work from there instead of over the Internet.

    Jonathon