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Apple Releases Remote Desktop 3 96

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the under-hyped-tools dept.
Dan Uricoli writes to tell us MacFixIt is reporting that today Apple computer has released remote desktop 3 " Some of the new or updated features include; a Remote Spotlight search, Dashboard widget, Curtain mode, user history reports, and more.
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Apple Releases Remote Desktop 3

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @01:52PM (#15107176)
    This is still hundreds of dollars. While Microsoft's Remote Desktop product is still free with most versions of Windows, and Linux still comes with Remote Desktop like functionality still universally built in. And heck, even on OS X you can rig something for free if you're willing to muck about with configuring VNC.

    I can't help but think this is taking Apple Remote Desktop from something that would be a great and useful tool to something ignored and forgotten. Apple doesn't seem to realize that "mac networks" as not-infrequently existed ten years ago don't exist at all anymore. There are no longer Mac system administrators chomping at the bit for improved software to administer and keep track of their networks. The Mac's primary problem in that realm right now is just convincing system administrators to use it, or even in some cases just convincin them to allow a mac on their Windows-only network. Those networks that are mac-only are likely small and running on a shoestring budget. In these contexts, what use is it to commit resources to something like Apple Remote Desktop? It seems like the kind of thing that's a great solution in a large-scale mac-only network, but that's the kind of thing that only exists anymore... at Apple Computer's headquarters. It's kind of like SunRay, Sun's fantastic thin client solution which Sun's own offices use, and no-one else anywhere does.

    If Apple moved Remote Desktop into the OS and made it free and universal, like Linux and Windows do, I'm sure it would be widely used. But as an expensive standalone... hell, I've never even encountered someone who uses this thing. You can't simultaneously beg for customers and try to charge those customers $499.
  • by xswl0931 (562013) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @02:06PM (#15107293)
    See subject
  • Re:Heh (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gEvil (beta) (945888) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @02:07PM (#15107308)
    Yeah, but a lot of schools do. And this program (and ANAT before that) are godsends for anyone administering a large amount of Macs.
  • Those networks that are mac-only are likely small and running on a shoestring budget.

    I don't know where you've been looking for mac-only networks but obviously you have never stepped foot inside a company in the creative industries. Photography, design, print, and graphics happen almost exclusively in mac-only environments (such as the one I work in). Our IT department (and likely many, many others in similar companies around the world) uses ARD to remotely install software so that a technician doesn't have to come over from the other building just to sit and wait for installs to happen.

    In addition, ARD is used extensively in mac-only computer labs on University campuses everywhere. It can be used to allow a single person to sit at a desk in front of the lab and read questions from users in the form of administrator messages. It saves the trouble of having to search in a lab for someone who needs help and it allows an administrator to better multitask while helping students.

    Don't assume that just because you personally don't have a use for something that it's useless. If there weren't a multitude of sites that used ARD version 2 and were all willing to purchase licenses for it, Apple wouldn't bother to come out with a third version.

  • by wazzzup (172351) <astromac&fastmail,fm> on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @02:10PM (#15107327)
    Oh wait...there is no upgrade pricing.

    That sucks.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @02:16PM (#15107392)
    I use ARD 2 faithfully it is a great product that was WAY more capabilites than windows remote desktop, I can manage and view the screen of up to 72 workstations at a time (great for a school envirnment), I can roll out software updates to all clients with one click, run shell scripts on 2000 OSX computers with one click.

    I look forward to using ARD for doing things such as dynamicly rolling out software, for example you can say "Make sure all eMacs with 512MB ram or greater install office 2004 when they boot up on the lan" and from that point on any computer fitting that description (with ARD enabled) will autmaticly download and install office 2004 from the admin machine. (yes I know you can do this with AD, but until now I havn't seen anything that can do it nicely on a MAc) I can run software usage reports to collect data on all applications that are run on the network over a given time period great for making recomendations on what software is used enough to purchase updates for and what software is hardly being utilized. I can copy a file or a string of text on a client (or admin machine) than paste it on the other ARD3 will send the copy / paste data back and forth (this I have not seen anywhere).

    With ARD I can run a small script to collect all client computer information (location, computer name, printers, mac addy) than when I re-image a school full of computers run another script that configures all the machines. imaging, than configuring 150 computers in a day complete with their proper names and default printer configurations is incredibly powerful and because the machines are Macs I can do it all from a single image no mater what mix of iMacs, eMacs, G5 towers etc.. are in the system.

    I could go on but I have to go order my copy of ARD 3.

  • by Ryan Amos (16972) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @02:50PM (#15107632)
    Mystery? You mean the fact that I have to sacrifice newborns to Steve Ballmer get my exchange server to not crash once a week?
  • by Fulg (138866) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @07:56PM (#15109992) Homepage
    As the other respondant has noted, you don't need to install anything; it's already installed in OS X 10.3+; just open the preference pane and configure it.

    WTF! You mean that all this time, I was fighting with osxvnc for NOTHING?!

    *runs over to the Mac running 10.4*

    Wow. Indeed this works quite well from the Win32 VNCviewer. I always believed you had to buy ARD to do this (and then only control Macs from other Macs, not cross-platform like I'm doing now with VNC).

    Thanks a bunch, even though you now make me feel like an idiot for not seeing it sooner :)
  • by babbage (61057) <`ude.lahtuosu.sic' `ta' `srevedc'> on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @08:04PM (#15110030) Homepage Journal
    Yeah. That's the One True Path to a Rewarding IT Career. On one hand, you can make your job seem like "magic", so that every time you do some stupid trivial fix for someone, it's mysterious and inaccessible. This is great, because it makes you seem like a miracle worker, but on the inside it gnaws away at your soul having to do the same monotonous grunt work all the time. Plus, if they ever catch on that these fixes are trivial, you've just tricked your way out of a job. On the other hand, you can make plain what you're doing, so that every time you do some stupid trivial fix for someone, they can learn from you and fix it themselves next time. This is great, because it has the potential to free you up to work on more interesting projects in the long run, but it does run the risk that you'll seem less like a miracle worker. But, if they catch on how to do these trivial fixes for themselves, you've just tricked and taught your way into a promotion. "Teach a man to fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to fish and he'll eat for life." The last thing we need is a "mystery of how IT performs its functions". What we need is transparency, and a way to empower people to solve their own problems so that we can focus on the truly difficult aspects of the job. I've used VNC-like programs to help users fix things at their desk while I was at mine. It almost always went more smoothly if I either had them on the phone while controlling their terminal, or if I left the terminal interactive and left open a chat program (IRC, AIM, iChat, even just leaving open a text editor where I could type messages and they could respond) so they could see what I was doing, I could explain why, they could give feedback to help me solve the problem more quickly, and I could show them how I resolved the problem so that they could fix it themselves next time. In 9 times out of 10, if the problem came up again, they didn't need my help or my time to set things right again. This curtain mode seems like a cute feature, but to me it seems best reserved for situations where the users can't be allowed to see what you're doing -- you have to enter or view admin passwords, you have to access systems that the users shouldn't see, etc.
  • by Shanep (68243) on Wednesday April 12, 2006 @05:50AM (#15112246) Homepage
    WTF! You mean that all this time, I was fighting with osxvnc for NOTHING?!

    Wow! I assumed the same thing. Especially given that the Control Panel for it specifically mentions that it is for use with ARD. I never bothered looking into that control panel because I was not willing to buy ARD, since it seemed expensive to me (I incorrectly thought it was just an Apple remote desktop client/server) and I don't really want to control remote control between my old clamshell iBook and Mac mini.

    But this is great! I am typing this from OSX running on my Mac mini, through my Sony VAIO. This is so good for me, because my mini is on my girlfriends desk due to there not being enough room for another monitor and keyboard and my large Sony VAIO on my desk. Now she can use her PC and I can use my VAIO for XP and BSD while retaining the use of my Mac for email, etc from the one machine. Fantastic.

    I *really* should look through all the options.
  • Re:Heh (Score:3, Insightful)

    by moof1138 (215921) on Wednesday April 12, 2006 @08:50AM (#15112779)
    ARD was the a rebranding of Apple Network Assistant (ANA) with OS X compatibility. Early versions of ARD were ANA compatible. ANA has been around since at least '95, I'm not sure of the original release date, I only recall the first time seeing it in '95. The 2.0.1 update came out in '96, so the original version was out well earlier than that for certain.

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