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I Got Caught ... Learning! – Mac Geek Gab 789  


John F. Braun
Joined: 22 years ago
Posts: 134
November 18, 2019 6:25 EST PM  

Note: Shownotes are complete!

Chapters/Timestamps/Stuff mentioned:

This topic was modified 10 months ago by John F. Braun

Eminent Member
Joined: 10 months ago
Posts: 27
November 21, 2019 4:53 EST PM  

In response to JP's question about back-to-my-mac replacements...  I submit two additional options.


If you are connecting to a computer that belongs to someone else (ex., to provide remote tech support to a family member), first start an iMessage or FaceTime conversation (mac to mac), then use the menu option to ask to take control of their screen.  The remote person says OK, and then you are in!
If you want to control a remote computer that is unattended, don’t overlook the built-in features of ssh and vnc that allow you to do this.  If you set your remote machine up so that you can get ssh access to it (router port forwarded), then you can tunnel a vnc session over the ssh connection.  There are a bunch of explanations on StackOverflow and and such for how to do this.  The beauty of using ssh is that you can set the remote machine to be very secure.  You can use RSA keypairs instead of passwords to authenticate (after you get your RSA keypair setup, you can configure ssh to disable password login, so people can be guessing your password all day long and never get in).
Personally, I use an alias in my .tcshrc file to automate the process.  Here’s an example.
alias clientvnc 'ssh -f -L 1202:localhost:5900 \!:1 sleep 10 ; open vnc://localhost:1202'
$ clientvnc [email protected]
This command does two things:
     ssh -f -L 1202:localhost:5900 \!:1 sleep 10 
Starts an ssh session with the remote machine, and tells the remote machine to hookup it’s normal vnc port (5900) to a tunnel traveling over the ssh pipe on port 1202.  Then it tells the remote computer to standby for a few seconds.
Is a separate command run on the local computer.  It starts a vnc session, but instead of pointing vnc to a remote computer with credentials and stuff, it points vnc to the local side of the pipe we created on port 1202.
If you manage multiple computers, having this alias in your .tcshrc file is handy.  You just need to specify a different [email protected] each time you invoke it, for the different client machines.
(Note I've been using terminal so long that my default shell is still tcsh.  If you are using a different shell, then you'd update a different shell prefs file to add that shell's equivalent of the alias command.  Depending on what shell you use, the replaceable parameter for the user name might be different (in tcsh it's the weird  \!:1. in the middle of the command.  It's escaped, because the whole command is in quotes for alias to work - it gets expanded when the alias is invoked).

Active Member
Joined: 11 months ago
Posts: 13
November 22, 2019 1:43 EST AM  

Seems like a nice read, will go through it.

This post was modified 10 months ago by John F. Braun