Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Using Remote Desktop with SSH Port Forwarding

I helped a buddy yesterday to connect to his machine at home while the Concordia network didn't allow the remote connection. Here's the short howto he wrote for me to publish.

Please note that the solution assumes that Cygwin is installed with the X server.

I was trying to connect to my computer at home from office. The strange thing
about our office is that we have a secure lab, therefore not so many things are
possible here. However, this gets us to do intresting things which are far
better than those that are done outside the lab.
do we know about Remote Desktop Connection?? Of course we do. the crappiest
desktop connection there is. Since it is crappy, we were not able to connect
from our secure lab to the desktop. Why?? Because when we bound the ports of
the the machine at home to the ports of the machine in the lab by(3389 and 80
are the posrts that Remote Desktop connection listens to):
ssh -L 3389:localhost:3389 -L 80:localhost:80 (doctored to remove the remote IP of the remote host)
We ran into a problem. The remote desktop Connection does not allow you to
connect to yourself. BUMMER!!!!!!!!!!!!
What did we do??
We came up with the solution on the website www.rdesktop.org. Basically, the
same as Remote desktop connection but better. The difference in that you can
connect to yourself. The graphic is bad. Since you are on X-server. But what
the heck!!
And...We are using SSH.. which is secure. Not your everyday remote Desktop
connection which is "who knows what"!!!
Long live the opensource.

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