Remote assistance for X

Warren Block wblock at
Fri Jan 1 20:45:26 UTC 2010

On Fri, 1 Jan 2010, Brahim LARCHET wrote:
> Le 01/01/2010 18:45, Matthew Seaman a ?crit :
>> x2x sounds like it fits the bill:
> Synergy can do this too

Those both sound more like software KVMs rather than remote control.  An 
example of what I'm up against, from a couple of days ago:

Them: It popped up a window that says error.
   Me: I'm going to need a bit more detail.
Them: It was blue.
   Me: ... Okay.  What did it say?
Them: I can't read that small type, and anyway there's another window in
       front of it that's kind of fuzzy.
   Me: Okay, which window is active is called "focus", and well, it
       doesn't matter.  Click on the title bar and drag that window out
       of the way.
Them: What's a title bar?
   Me: That... er, bar at the top, with the, well, title on it.
Them: When you say click, do you mean the left or right mouse button?

Ultravnc ( has a slick setup where you give the 
Windows user a binary to run, and it calls back to the support site. 
No setup needed the client's part.  I don't know how much of that is 

The shared session is important to be able to show the users how to do 
things in their own inevitably-customized session.

Right now, I can run ssvncviewer -listen on the support system, then run 
this on the "supportee" system:

cmd="x11vnc -display :0 -localhost -connect localhost -ncache"
ssh -t -c blowfish -R 5500:$remotehost:5500 localhost "$cmd"

That works, and I think it meets the specs.  Reversing connection 
combined with a remote tunnel is making me dizzy.  And this is all on 
the LAN for testing, so allowing this in through the firewall will add 
more complexity.

-Warren Block * Rapid City, South Dakota USA

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