Updated April 5, 2023
Introduction to Linux remote desktop
Linux remote desktop is defined as a feature or utility from software or the operating system, which allows an environment in a different personal computer to be run remotely on either a PC or a server while still being shown on the client-side as well. Here, the client site is defined as the environment space shared across other spaces at a distance, viz. in remote space. As per the application being used, it is possible to have varying features, including attaching oneself to an existing active session that might be used in controlling from elsewhere to fix any problem in the system but troubleshoot it remotely.
Working of Linux remote desktop
This section will look at how a remote desktop works in Linux and the various options available for a remote desktop in Linux. To begin with, access using a remote desktop is possible by a special protocol known as RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol), and this protocol is one of the proprietary protocols developed by Microsoft. This protocol provides the graphical interface that is required for connection to another computer over the network. There is although a free implementation of RDP in the form of FreeRDP, which will be discussed as a part of the options available to us for Linux Remote Desktop.
The model in which RDP works is the client-server model. This model is widely used in cases where the server provides resources and services for one or more clients. This relationship is a one-to-many relationship where the single server has the capability to provide resources for multiple clients at a single time. Here the client requests for a connection to the server, and then it is dependent on the server to accept or reject the connection request. Upon the acceptance of the connection, there is a connection established and maintained over the RDP protocol. Thus, the RDP client software, which the user employs, becomes the point of connection and the management of the remote desktop computer.
Along with RDP, there is another concept of using VNC, a server-client protocol that provides connection and control of a distant system using Graphical User Interface (GUI) provided. The main limitation of RDP is the compatibility, and hence VNC is another protocol that is used widely as this protocol is platform-independent. The limitation of VNC is that the protocol is slower in terms of performance. VNC works because it transmits the signal from a keyboard and mouse to another computer and then relays back the graphical screen updates back in the opposite direction over the network.
At this point, for the matter of concern for this article, we will look at options through which we will be able to connect any other operating system from the existing Linux system, which is available to us.
The first option is TigerVNC, which, as the name suggests, is a VNC protocol implementation. This option has the capability to run 3D and video applications with maintaining a consistent user interface. The second option is to use Remmina, which is specifically built for Linux and other Unix like systems. This option is for those who travel a lot or system administrators who need to work remotely and work with a lot of computers! The third option is NoMachine, which is known for its most important factor, “speed”. The responsiveness provided is near the local speed, and it makes the user feel as if one is directly in front of the computer, even in high latency and low bandwidth. The fourth, last but not the least, an option is XRDP, which has been discussed in detail in one of our articles and is mostly used for RDP connection to use the high speed of RDP connection!
Examples of Linux remote desktop
Here are the following examples mention below
As mentioned earlier, TigerVNC is based only on VNC protocol which helps run 3D and video applications. Using this application, one can use the extensions provided for advanced authentication methods and TLS encryption.
Using Remmina, one can utilize all the protocols which the application supports, such as RDP, VNC, NX, or SSH. Also, the user needs to make sure that the other system which needs to be accessed needs to have a firewall open for the authentic connection over any protocol!
Using the NX protocol technology, one can attain a high-speed connection even in the worst-performing bandwidth cases. This is again a free application!
This application is explained in one of our articles and is a free and open-source implementation of the RDP server to give a dull RDP-compatible remote desktop experience.
In this era of digitalization, we see the world working 24/7, which makes it even more important for us not to entertain even a single minute of system downtime. For the same, Linux Remote Desktop comes in very handy as it gets its mention about the specialty in its advantages.
- All the devices connected to the network is easily monitored, controlled, and maintained through a remote desktop.
- To reduce downtime, one can easily troubleshoot using remote access.
- When devices are connected through a network, files can be accessed without any effort through Linux remote desktop.
- For different user categories, the admins can define access rights so that unauthorized access can be tackled along with some other administrative tasks.
- Be it wherever you are in the world, one can access the file anywhere, anytime, giving one a boost in their business growth.
- It is not easy to invest in technology, and it is even more difficult to optimize that investment. To the rescue comes a remote desktop, where one can easily build a platform for multiple users to access the resources and share them, hence optimizing the investment made to that.
- Finally, if the Linux server is on the cloud, one shouldn’t worry about data loss during a system crash as the data is available on the cloud for later utilization.
In this article, we have got a flavor of what it means to have a remote desktop in Linux and the different options Linux contains to provide the facility and utility of a remote desktop. One must also be cognizant of the fact that the lists and examples mentioned here are not exhaustive but are the ones that are used widely in the industry. Readers are encouraged to experiment more with other options whenever they find, but carefully!
This is a guide to Linux remote desktop. Here we discuss the Working of Linux remote desktop along with the Examples and Advantages. You may also look at the following articles to learn more –