I've been trying out the beta version of LogMein's updated remote control service, which is due to go live at the end of this month. It adds a number of new features that make life easier when accessing a computer remotely.
I've found the service extremely useful when working from home. Our company email system uses Lotus Notes, and web-based access to this is rather primitive and unsatisfactory. Rather than install Notes on my home PC, it's easier to remotely view the screen of my office computer instead.
The new LogMeIn version makes the controls clear and easier to find than before. You can go into a remote control session or open the file transfer window at any time by clicking a single button. When in a remote control session, a pop-up control panel lets you flick between the browser view and full screen mode, and select various other options.
New features include support for drag and drop file transfer. If I've written an article at home, this lets me copy the document file to my office PC as easily as you would move a document between folders on the same computer.
However, LogMeIn also seems to have improved the performance of the remote control viewer itself. A year or two back, most remote control tools suffered to a greater or lesser degree from network latency, meaning that when you moved the mouse, the pointer on the remote screen took a fraction of a second to follow.
Using the new LogMeIn, I didn't experience any of this. When in full-screen mode, I found it easy to believe that the Windows desktop I was using belonged to my home PC in front of me, and not the remote office system. However, there is a floating status message and a toolbar at the top of the screen that gives the game away.
My only gripe is that I couldn't get LogMeIn to bring sound from the remote computer to my home PC, but this is likely to be an issue that is sorted out before the updated service goes live at the end of September.
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