CoSession brings remote management and more to your desktop

If you run your company's Help desk and often talk remote users through a complex series of commands, Artisoft's CoSession Remote 32 8.1 can help you. This remote management and systems control tool offers remote access to personal computers, remote file transfer, and remote voice communications.

Useful Features
With CoSession Remote 32, you can transfer files to and from remote systems via separate File Transfer Client and File Transfer Server components and converse with remote users using the Keyboard Chat feature. The Remote Control Viewer lets you access other machines, and the Remote Control Host lets you control them through the Help desk. With the Voice Chat feature, you can discuss problems with a remote user while using other software components simultaneously. With the Roving Callback feature, a user can provide contact information immediately and connect to the remote system while away from the office. This feature can also potentially save you a great deal of money in phone charges.

CoSession Remote 32 offers other enhanced remote control features, such as Screen Scaling and Optimized Desktop. When you view a remote session whose screen is larger than your screen, you usually have to use your scroll bar to see all the sections. With Screen Scaling, you can see the entire scaled desktop of a remote computer in your system's Remote Control Viewer window. Optimized Desktop lets you disable the transmission of wallpapers, backgrounds, and screen savers, thereby increasing your computer's response time. Without it, you might have to wait minutes for the initial screen to download when you are connecting to a remote machine with intricate desktop wallpaper.

If you are concerned about security, CoSession Remote 32 offers several options. At the lowest level, you can connect uninhibited to remote systems and they can connect to you. At higher levels, you can restrict either user or group access to your machine or restrict components that users may operate (e.g., you might let a user retrieve files from your computer but not access the remote control feature). To protect against break-ins, you can also program the software to ask for a password.

With CoSession Remote 32, you can establish connections over LANs and modem links. Because the product supports Telephony API (TAPI) 2.0, it can communicate with remote systems over modems, serial connections, parallel connections, wireless infrared adapter devices, and ISDN circuits.

Installation and Use
I tested the product on two Windows NT machines: a Prioris HX590 dual-processor server running NT Server 4.0 and an Acer America P166 running NT Workstation 4.0. When I inserted the installation CD-ROM, the setup program ran. I opted for an express installation (which took about 2 minutes), then rebooted my systems to activate the software.

When I tried to connect my NT workstation to my NT server, the server rebooted with no explanation (i.e., I didn't receive an abnormal event log message or blue screen). When I attempted to connect to the same server later, everything worked fine. I didn't have any trouble connecting to other NT workstations in my test environment, and once I connected the software, it performed without any difficulty.

You must establish a series of Phone Book entries to control which services you want to use on outbound connections and which inbound connections you want to handle. Screen 1 shows the Phone Book setup screen. CoSession Remote 32's Quick Start Wizard can help you create a Training Phone Book entry that launches the Remote Control Viewer and Voice Chat features. You can create a Phone Book entry in which the different host features (e.g., File Transfer Server and Remote Control Viewer) are active so remote users can access your computer. Finally, you can place Phone Book entry shortcuts on your computer for quick, one-click connections.

Better Remote Control
Aside from the mysterious random server reboot, I had no problems with CoSession Remote 32. In fact, it solved a lot of my remote access problems. So, if you need better remote control, check out this new product from Artisoft.

CoSession Remote 32 8.1
Contact: Artisoft Remote Computing Products Group * 520-670-7100 or 800-322-9440, Web: http://www.artisoft.com
Price: $69 for a single PC, $579 for 10 PCs
System Requirements: For Windows 95: , Intel 486 or better, 8MB of RAM, 9MB of hard disk space, VGA or better, For Windows NT: , Intel Pentium 100, 16MB of RAM, 9MB of hard disk space, VGA or better