Dec 10, 2016
I am a huge fan of mobility. When it’s all said and done, the ability to do most things unencumbered by stationary desktops is invaluable beyond measure. I’m able to manage most aspects of my daily life reasonably well from my Android-powered smartphone. Outside of wi-fi connectivity, the internet connectivity is great to have, and opens the doors to being able to things far, far from home.
I don’t even fear provider outages anymore. It’s all about pocket power.
Still, every now and then, it is necessary to get on Ol’ Trusty. The desktop still manages all sorts of peripherals (like wireless hard drives and the like) and there are some apps that just don’t translate to Chrome OS or Android.
That’s where one of my favorite applications, Chrome Remote Desktop, comes in and fills several gaps admirably.
What this app does is to, in essence, link Chrome browser on Windows and Mac machines to Android and/or Chromebooks. When set up properly, it is possible to pipe in to one’s desktop remotely. In practice, this allows me to access my main desktop from my Chromebook and my Samsung S7 Edge and iPad, if I so need.
You see, there are some operations that are still a little more fluid on a desktop. Other times, it is a unique problem; for example, the other day, I needed a particular account password on the road. I do have a password vault with both mobile and desktop clients, but I had entered this new password in the day before, and hadn’t synced both clients. One quick CRD session later, I had the password I needed (and then synced the password vault clients for good measure).
Another scenario is the occasional need for an alternative browser when using my Chromebook. I sometimes find it easier to just pipe in to the home desktop.
With the right resolution, I feel like I am right at home, sitting at my desk.
Chrome Remote Desktop isn’t perfect; I’m not that big a fan of keeping a desktop machine on and running indefinitely, but hey, it is a simple solution that has the benefit of being relatively lightweight and cross-platform.