Chrome Remote Desktop

Google announced something very cool today, Chrome Remote Desktop beta, an app in the Chrome Web Store that allows desktop sharing between any two computers.

Each machine needs to be running Chrome, as well as the web app, but that’s it. No additional software to install and manage.

This is huge for IT, support, and development because it provides a relatively simple solution to major problems. I can also see tons of other functional areas adopting this for ad hoc meetings and collaboration.

This is also a big plus for Chromebooks too, which don’t allow external software to install.

I just test-drove this, and it wasn’t without hiccups. The app crashed on the destination machine when I tried to connect, so I had to restart Chrome on that instance to get it working. After that, it worked flawlessly. I connected from Mac to Ubuntu and had access to the entire desktop, including all the open workspaces.

Interestingly, I couldn’t connect when one machine was on VPN, which makes sense, but when I connected first, then started VPN remotely, the connection persisted. I doubt this is ideal behavior from an IS perspective, just reporting the behavior.

If you’re like me, this is a huge win for family tech support too. I’ve been using Team Viewer since my parents went Mac years ago, and this looks like it could be a replacement.

Thoughts? Find the comments.




  1. If Chrome had a larger user base, this would be a big win… but, at present if the first step of desktop sharing is “go download application XYZ,” we’re not much closer from a usability standpoint.

    Is it peer-to-peer plugin to Chrome, or does it need a web server running somewhere?

  2. Larger user base? Some outlets are predicting 20% by year end, others say Chrome will pass Firefox. Sure, those numbers are a bit wonky, but Chrome has a lot of users.

    Plus, this is huge for Chromebooks.

    I don’t know the specifics, but from a user perspective, it’s peer-to-peer. You generate a code and give it to the other browser instance to open the connection.

  3. Hey, RHUB remote support servers is another very good alternative for remotely accessing computers from anywhere. It is fortknox.

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