The Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) enables you to connect to a remote Windows system and control it using the graphical user interface. VNC enables you to connect to all sorts of computers, including Windows, Linux, and Mac, and control the computers via the GUI.
- Now, connecting to a command line interface is cool, but if you really want to be great, why don't we connect to a remote desktop? Let's face it. Today's operating systems are often using graphical user interfaces, and if I want to connect to another system, it's often more interesting to me to be able to actually connect to a desktop on another system. So, there's a lot more to this than simply connecting to a command line interface. We have to emulate mouse controls. We have to deal with graphic resolutions differences, so there's a few ways to do this. Now, in the Windows world, we use what's called, Remote Desktop Protocol. RDP runs on port 3389, and it's pretty much unique to Windows. So, what I'm going to do is, I've got two computers up on the screen right now. I've got one of them I'm going to set up to allow people to use RDP, and then we'll go connect to it with the other one. So I've got a Windows 7 and a Windows 10 system. RDP's been around for a while, and it works fine with just about every version of Windows. So first of all, here I am in my system properties, and I've got two choices here. One says, 'Allow remote assistance,' and the other one is 'Remote desktop.' The differences between these two is subtle but important. With remote assistance, if somebody connects into my computer, it's as though we've got two mice and two keyboards. I can see everything they're doing. They can see everything I'm doing. With remote desktop, what we're doing in that case, is we're simply making a connection to another computer. Once you're connected, nobody else can connect to it. Now, these are actually very convenient. For example, if I got a bunch of Windows server systems sitting in a rack far away, RDP is the way we go to configure those servers. Nobody wants to walk all the way to the server room, so let's go ahead and connect to this system using RDP. I'm going to allow remote connections and just hit OK. Now I need to know my IP address or computer name, so I'm just going to run command, type ipconfig. So now, coming over to this other system, I'm just going to type in 'remote,' so there's remote desktop connection right there. And I just need to type in the name of the computer I want to connect to. It's already there because I tested this before we tried it, and I'm going to hit connect. It cannot confirm that this is exactly the machine I want to connect to. I'm just going to say go for it. It's on my LAN, I trust the system. So right now, someone else is connected. If I go ahead and hit yes, it's going to disconnect that other person. Then, you'll see it's giving me a warning, so the one on the right goes blank. I know it looks like a login screen, but it's blank. And now, I'm actually connected to this other computer. You can't see what I'm doing on here 'cause I'm logged in as a different user. However, I could do whatever I want to do here, and I am actually connected to that other system. Well, it's kind of boring. You can't really see anything, so what I'm going to do is go over to the C drive. And I'm going to create a folder. 'I was here.' So, I've got that folder made. And what I'm going to do now is I'm just going to log out. I'm just going to close this which will log me off of that other system. Now, I can come over here, and there he was. 'I was here.' Absolute proof that Remote Desktop Protocol worked exactly as we wanted it to. So, RDP is great, but it's really more of a Windows thing than anything else. If you want to start using other types of remote desktops, getting to Linux boxes, getting to Mac systems, we use a different protocol called VNC. It's probably the most popular third-party protocol out there. In fact, VNC is built into pretty much all Linux and Mac machines. However, it's not built into Windows. So in order to take advantage of this, I had to get a program that runs on top of the VNC protocol called TightVNC which is completely free, and I've got it installed on here. So let's fire up TightVNC, and let's go see some other computers that are out there. All right, so I've installed TightVNC on here. Now, TightVNC is both a server and a client. So when you install TightVNC, you get all this server stuff. But I just want to run the viewer which allows me to connect to people who are sharing their stuff. So, we're going to connect in here. And all you have to do is type in the IP address or the fully-qualified domain name. So I'm going to hit Connect. Now, VNC has a password built into it which I've got ready to go. Hey, check this out! Look man, I'm on Ubuntu Linux! How cool is that? So what I want to do now, that's so much fun, let's do it again. Because TightVNC is built into all Macs, it's a great tool for connecting to Macs. But you can see that I'm running a Mac connection and a Linux connection at the exact same time. The only protocol you need to memorize for the exam is that RDP uses port 3389. I want you to remember that when it comes to remote desktops, Windows is fine with RDP, but VNC works on every single operating system out there, even Windows to Windows. If I'm making connections, I'm probably going to be going with a VNC protocol if I'm going to operating systems other than Windows. (jazzy guitar music)
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