Thursday, January 5, 2012


Deutsch: TeamViewerImage via WikipediaI have always been a technology oriented guy.  In my single days, I was always among the first of my friends to get the latest technological advances.  I was the first to adapt CD and DVD technology.   In high school, I was taking computer programming courses and was one of the first of my friends to get a personal computer.  Anybody remember the old Commodore 64's?

For those reasons, I kind of became the go to guy whenever anybody in the family had questions about technology.  I am now 50 years old, and with the added responsibility of a wife and child, I am not quite as quick to get the latest technological gear.  That said, I am still fairly up to speed on a lot of things, especially when it comes to personal computing.

Last year, my parents finally decided to enter the digital age and bought their first computer.  They already had their television through Verizon FiOS, so they had a bit of a taste of Facebook and Twitter on there.  With their laptop purchase, they added internet access and spend a great deal of their day playing various games on Facebook.  My mother follows a few celebrities on Twitter.

Needless to say, since this is my parents first foray into the world of computing and the internet, they are not the most technologically savvy.  Quite often, they call me to ask me about some computer problem they are having.  Since they are such novices, it is hard to sometimes talk to them about what they are experiencing on the computer.  There have been a few times I had to drive out to their home to try to help them out.

So many times, the things they were trying to tell me were going on with their computer became a source of frustration.  They do not know a lot of the basics so trying to decipher their description of the problem and trying to walk them through steps to try to ascertain what was going on became stressful, especially if I had a few drinks in me.

I started to bitch and moan a lot and thought it would be so much easier if I could find a way to remotely tap into their computer to see what was going on.  In my office whenever we have a problem or need something installed, our tech support accesses our computers remotely.  I have had a couple issues in the past where Verizon support has also accessed my computer remotely.

I started to do some searches on the internet for programs that would allow me to access my parents computer remotely.  I found one, and the best thing is it is free for personal use.  It is called TeamViewer.  I downloaded it onto my laptop, and the next time that I went out to my parents house to help them with an issue, I loaded it onto theirs.

Last week, we had our first opportunity to try it out.  I opened the software on my laptop and had them do the same.  They gave me their ID number and password.  I was then able to access their desktop and view all of the settings on their program to try to fix their issues.  A couple of days ago, they had another issue that I was able to explore, and hopefully correct.

I highly recommend using TeamViewer if you or somebody in your family sometimes needs a little technological support.  It can also be used to share things on one desktop to another.  I recently accessed my parents computer and simply watched what desktop to try to see what was actually occurring on their machine.  You also can't beat the cost, it's FREE!

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  1. TeamViewer seems really cool. I have a Tier 2 Help Desk and Desktop support "kid" in my house, and hubby is hardware, I am software. I can only thank my higher power that my parents or hubby's aunt do not own one! I should get it for my boss, since I work from home a lot!!!!

  2. When I used to coach other poker players in online poker, I used to use TeamViewer. It is a really great program!

  3. I needed that when I purchased my mother's first computer. I lived in Atlanta and my parent's lived in Northern Vermont. I spent a lot of time helping her via phone and on two occasions, I took weekend flights to their home. No small jaunt since the Montreal airport was the quickest route and still almost 100 miles from their home. Both times, it took me less than 2 minutes to fix the problem.

    I'm not sorry that I got one for her though. She had almost ten years of happily emailing friends and playing solitaire games.

  4. Kimmy, it was neat to use it for the first time

    Grandma, I am glad they have something they enjoy and keeps then entertained, even though it can be frustrating at times

  5. I have had other IT folk do this in a corporate setting, but I didn't know it could be done personally.

    How about hacking and fraud?
    Great to read you again.

  6. I have used these to fixed my sisters lappy at uk to removed viruses on her pc, visiting through grandmas

  7. Don, glad to see you posting again as well. You have to enter a 9 digit ID number and a 4 digit password, plus both computers have to be running the software simultaneously, so I think it would be fairly secure.

  8. I use Teamviewer and ScreenConnect to for online support. Both work great and I'd recommend either to help others with computer issues.



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