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I have a few different Desktop versions of Ubuntus (13.04, 12.04, Kubuntu,..) on different computers.

I would like to manage all of them on a single computer via remote connection and be able to use GUI programs on the remote computer as team viewer allows.

But, team viewer provides a limited connection time for the free versions. Therefore, I am looking for a substitute that it is easy to install, use, and works fine on different versions of Ubuntu desktops, and freeware.

What would be your suggestion?

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Do you mean just the whole desktop view or the single applications view too? – slm Sep 21 '13 at 20:49
it does not matter as long as it allows me to access the programs on the remote desktop and easy to use – Angs Sep 21 '13 at 21:01
up vote 3 down vote accepted

I would use the application Vinagre.


You invoke it from the command line like so:

$ vinagre

There is also a applet that should be available when you install it so that you can just pick machines that you've bookmarked with it form a pulldown when you add the applet to your toolbar.

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+1. Remmina at remmina.sourceforge.net is another good alternative. – cas Sep 22 '13 at 2:45

I would recommend using VNC, possible tunneled over SSH or through a VPN for security. You will need to run a VNC server on each machine you want to access. The tightvnc package contains vncserver, this launches an X11 server separate from the one displayed on that computer's monitor, and a VNC server to give you access to it. There is also a package x11vnc, it contains a VNC server that will connect to the X11 server already running on the computer, which is much more convenient for screen sharing. x11vnc will act like teamviewer.

As for VNC clients, tightvnc comes with vncviewer. You may also want to try the vinagre that slm mentions.

As for other options, X11 forwarding would allow an application to display itself on a different computer, but you can't move the display between different computers, and it has some really crippling performance issues. Many applications now come with a web interface, e.g. some popular bittorrent clients, and this would be most efficient by far if the applications you need support this.

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