Remote Desktop Access


I’d like to remotely access my home Linux PC from my windows Laptop when on vacation. I’ve used Teamviewer in the past. Is there a better way?



Hi Graham,

Let me ask you this first:

Are there any limitations you encounter when using your current solution? If no, and all works well then perhaps this is the best and easiest solution for you.

However, Teamviewer’s nature is to be mostly used as a troubleshooting or support solution. The most weakest point in this solution is that you rely on teamviewer’s stability. What do you do in case the TeamViewer encounters some unexpected issue and shuts down. Do you have any means launch it again?

If you need a bullet proof solution to access your PC while on holiday you should consider to have the following two items checked before you leave ( I assume that you will also correctly set your router’s firewall to be able to access the below services using the approach port numbers) :

Please note that VNC is not desktop sharing tool. However, it will allow you run any GUI/Desktop applications locally on your home computer from any remote location. In case that something goes wrong your can always use SSH to remotely login to your home computer’s command line and troubleshoot.

Furthermore, depending on your needs you can also simply use ssh command to run GNU applications from remote location by using the -X parameter. So for example:

remote-pc ~$ ssh -X graham@my-home-ip
home-pc ~$ firefox

will make the firefox browser on your home PC available on the remote host. SSH will also allow you to copy files between any local and remote hosts.

In order to tailor the best solution I would need to know more about your requirements. Do you need to just copy files? Or do you run some GUI applications and need check back from time to time?

Hope this helps…



Thanks for the info. I think my needs are to access files on my linux pc. So an sFTP server might do the trick. I’m reading some articles on it now. I can connect when on my home network…but i cannt connect when on another network. Still working out the kinks.

Thanks again


Hi Graham,

No worries. In that case that you need access to files only sFTP setup will work just fine. Remote desktop might be in your case an overkill. If you do not need anything sophisticated even SCP command might be sufficient.

For both to work you need:

  • sshd running on your server ( your home computer )
  • opened port 22 on your server’s firewall
  • port-forward setup on your router to forward the external port to a local port 22 on your server running sshd

Hope this helps


split this topic #5

A post was split to a new topic: Unable to access ftp/sftp server from remote location


I was pulling my hair out for a few days trying to do the same before I stumbled across the suggestion to use No Machine. There were still a few minor frustrations setting it up but it’s been working really well now.

A tip is to make sure you are working on a static IP (ask your ISP) and take a picture of the NX based IP address on the opening screen before you go on holiday. If for any chance your IP cycles to a new IP (hypothetically), you would lose your ability to connect.

Also take note of your username and password for login. That tip is probably obvious but I got caught out with my username being in lowercase when I was sure I entered it as my full name. You can open a terminal and type “whoami” to find it out.

Make sure you test it using a computer that is NOT on your home network before going on holiday.