Best way to provide remote access for home office?



  • I have a client whose dad helps him with the books in his home office once a week. They would like to set up remote access for the one day a week he does this so dad does not have to drive 2-3 hours.

    Log Me In and TeamViewer seem a little pricey to them for something used a few hours once a week.

    Are there any recommended similar remote access options that do not require replacing routers, static IPs and the like?

    Thanks.



  • Is this "roaming remote access" or stationary?



  • Regardless of the above, if this is a simple setup, then ZeroTier and RDP (assuming Windows) is all that is needed. All free, works well, super easy.



  • Stationary.

    Dad would like to simply access the desktop in son's office from his home.



  • OpenVPN is free, too, but more complicated for no reason compared to ZeroTier.



  • Thank you. I will look into ZeroTier.



  • @Scott said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    Stationary.

    Dad would like to simply access the desktop in son's office from his home.

    Then you could skip the ZeroTier path and just expose RDP, but limit it to the IP range of reasonable possibility from the ISP. But ZeroTier is so easy, why not add it?

    But direct RDP is fine, too, with reasonable precations (good passwords, IP limiting, etc.)



  • If you ignore your "without replacing gear" stipulation, of course having any business routers would work, too and provide point to point VPN. But no need for that. But if you wanted to do that... Ubiquiti EdgeRouters or USG are cheap and work great.



  • Well, I barely understand Zero Tier, so I am not going to be attempting to explain it much less run it at a guy's home office and have his 75+ year old dad use it.



  • @Scott said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    Well, I barely understand Zero Tier, so I am not going to be attempting to explain it much less run it at a guy's home office and have his 75+ year old dad use it.

    What do you not understand? you install it on both computers and both computers get a second IP address and you remote from one to the other. you’re done



  • @Scott said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    Well, I barely understand Zero Tier, so I am not going to be attempting to explain it much less run it at a guy's home office and have his 75+ year old dad use it.

    It's the simplest, most straightforward possible option. Everything else is going to be way harder.



  • @Scott said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    I have a client whose dad helps him with the books in his home office once a week. They would like to set up remote access for the one day a week he does this so dad does not have to drive 2-3 hours.

    Log Me In and TeamViewer seem a little pricey to them for something used a few hours once a week.

    Are there any recommended similar remote access options that do not require replacing routers, static IPs and the like?

    Thanks.

    If they are using Windows 10, the built in Quick Assist works awesome. I used it to help my dad across the country a few times, zero issues, full control.

    It literally does not get any easier than this.

    https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4026516/windows-use-remote-assistance-to-let-someone-fix-your-pc

    Screenshot_20190315-070602_Chrome.jpg



  • @Scott

    AnyDesk



  • Maybe I should not have read too far into moons and the nodes orbiting them...

    I am connected.

    Any reason to change any defaults?

    It matter if I setup my user and his dad on this network, or it make sense to create their own?

    Thank you all.



  • Thanks for the zeroteer link, haven't heard of it before.

    What I do is use sshuttle. It basically does exactly the same thing as a VPN, but through an SSH tunnel. I use Linux everywhere, so it's easy, but afaik, OpenSSH can be installed on Windows these days as well.



  • I use anydesk, basically same feature set as TeamViewer. Why not move to Quickbooks Online (sounds like he has QB πŸ– )

    https://anydesk.com/en/



  • @krisleslie said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    I use anydesk, basically same feature set as TeamViewer. Why not move to Quickbooks Online (sounds like he has QB )

    QB Online isn't QB. It's Intuit, but a different, much lesser, product. It's fine, if it fits your need. But in theory, if you use real QB you already do so only because you have to. If QB Online works for you, you would already have been on Xero or Wave or something else better

    Basically, no proper QB user can ever consider QB Online.



  • @scottalanmiller it's not 100% equivalent, but it's better in some cases. The only thing most people are losing (which can be created) is reports. Support can help rebuild reports with you on the phone. Easy peasy. One less thing to troubleshoot in the grand scheme of things. QB on a desktop sucks so bad they don't even know why it breaks at times! For the average small business, Quick Books has been the goto app for years and decades. So I totally agree with going to Xero, Wave, and other cloud-first initiatives but getting that wrapped around anyone short of being a millennial is a tough battle. I see very little benefit of a non-web-based version. In this day and age, the api's of those web-based apps work so much for you especially when you have other types of PSA's in place that you want to use. Trying to tie in Quick Books on the desktop to something web-based cost more and is a bit more time-consuming and limited.



  • Like in the case of us, as a non-profit it's a bit of a step-down but that's only due to Intuit. Again, feature for feature, I still have yet to see anything short of reports being the factor that was missing. There isn't a technical limitation and it's faster to iterate the online version than desktop by a big margin. But when we look at Quickbooks for the desktop, the limitations you have are often there and never go away (since the 90's)!



  • @krisleslie said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    @scottalanmiller it's not 100% equivalent, but it's better in some cases. The only thing most people are losing (which can be created) is reports. Support can help rebuild reports with you on the phone. Easy peasy. One less thing to troubleshoot in the grand scheme of things. QB on a desktop sucks so bad they don't even know why it breaks at times! For the average small business, Quick Books has been the goto app for years and decades. So I totally agree with going to Xero, Wave, and other cloud-first initiatives but getting that wrapped around anyone short of being a millennial is a tough battle. I see very little benefit of a non-web-based version. In this day and age, the api's of those web-based apps work so much for you especially when you have other types of PSA's in place that you want to use. Trying to tie in Quick Books on the desktop to something web-based cost more and is a bit more time-consuming and limited.

    When your books are used for forensics, Online doesn't cut it at all. There are all kinds of features lacking on the high end.



  • @scottalanmiller if it where me, I'd suggest the poster just move to Xero. I played with it and it's definitely got better options for SMB's.

    Scott honestly, even at our company, WE don't use Quickbooks to it's potential and we have the enterprise version. It's like the same debate of people crying about using Microsoft Word vs Google Docs. 99% of my staff won't ever write a proper novel, properly structure a document or build it around standards. That 1% that does really only accounts for IT projects that literally require Word or certain features in docs we may get when receiving documents from our state or the government/partners. Very much cheaper and EASIER to just use Google, Quip, Zoho etc.



  • @scottalanmiller in a case like that, I've never had to deal with that from an audit perspective. Auditors never came and asked for that nor for the clients, we manage. I actually usually want them to go all forensic, just never happens. But I agree with you in that having it when not needed vs not having it and need it πŸ™‚ I'll be bugging them about that and making suggestions for that online. Honestly from an online perspective, that's a small issue that can be fixed very easily since it's an audit trail. They have one in place probably just not up to the standards your talking about which means it's a big gap that can be fixed. I mean they are making $$$ off it why not add it?



  • @krisleslie said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    @scottalanmiller if it where me, I'd suggest the poster just move to Xero. I played with it and it's definitely got better options for SMB's.

    That's what we had to leave due to forensic needs. Xero and QB Online couldn't handle the kind of accounting required for court analysis.



  • Scott is there anyone that could in the cloud?



  • @krisleslie said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    I actually usually want them to go all forensic, just never happens.

    No no, we actually have attorneys and a forensic accounting specialist that actually goes through the books. You really don't "want" that.



  • @krisleslie said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    Scott is there anyone that could in the cloud?

    QB does with Hosted QB, just not QB Online (they are two different products entirely.) But Hosted QB is crap compared to self hosted. But our forensic firm prefers the hosted system so we are using Hosted QB which is online, even though we don't prefer it. But for customers doing the same thing, we host on their behalf.



  • @Scott said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    Maybe I should not have read too far into moons and the nodes orbiting them...

    I am connected.

    Any reason to change any defaults?

    It matter if I setup my user and his dad on this network, or it make sense to create their own?

    Thank you all.

    Make their own network with only those two devices joined to it simply to keep anything you add in the future off of it.

    I have a "temp" network I use for PBX clients that my laptop is always a member of so I can get into a client PBX from where ever I am since I put ZT on the PBX. I disjoin after setup and training. Works great.



  • @scottalanmiller we get audited yearly and randomly, it's just that topic has never come up as long as I've been here. They dig through the financials cause it's local, state and nationwide funds πŸ™‚ but no one has come to IT and ask hey, let me dive in your QB.

    I guess with all this coming to light, it depends on the OP and his business. Because if it were me and I'm not having to deal with that particular side of it (audit hell), I'd just stick with online considering the desktop versions still feel circa 1990 and make sure my books are always right. No harm no foul :0)



  • @krisleslie said in Best way to provide remote access for home office?:

    we get audited yearly and randomly, it's just that topic has never come up as long as I've been her

    Getting audited is nothing like doing court forensics. You can be audited with any accounting package.



  • Basically I do the same thing, I "host" it for one of our clients as well. I mean yea that's a different service but same thing just a role of responsibility shift for the infrastructure. It's just QB on someone else's hardware and network. That's not really a difference for the QB Online. They just don't want to spend the # I assume for logging properly. I see the benefit of a hybrid offering.


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