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Currently the PC TSC project: PC TSC: Easily turn a PC into a Terminal Server Client is ready to convert PCs to RDP terminal server clients, for Microsoft-based terminal servers. ...
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  1. #1
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    Standard for Linux-based terminal servers?


    Currently the PC TSC project:

    PC TSC: Easily turn a PC into a Terminal Server Client

    is ready to convert PCs to RDP terminal server clients, for Microsoft-based terminal servers. It uses Puppy Linux as base. I want to add another capability for Linux-based terminal servers. I can easily imagine doing this using X protocol or VNC; but I would like to know what is most in use for Linux terminal server arrangements. Anyone have some real-world experiences?

    J.E.B.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Most remote access to Linux/Unix systems is via a VPN, SSH, or VNC. You mention X protocol, but that is just a display protocol which is usually used in conjunction with SSH using the -X protocol forwarding/tunneling option. I can't say which is the most popular as I have used all of them just about equally over the years. A lot depends upon what you want out of your connection, and how much bandwidth you have. VNC is good, OpenVPN is good, SSH is good. Honestly, I have all of them running on my systems that need to be accessed from outside the firewall since each serves a different need.

    VPN - provides ability to be a system on the remote network, with access to all appropriate resources from local applications. Local malware can use this tunnel to compromise the remote network.
    VNC - provides true remote terminal connection, so that only display data can move to the local system. This is the most secure, in theory.
    SSH - similar to VNC, but lower bandwidth unless you start an X connection. Not easily compromised. Good for remote diagnostics, code compilation, etc.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

  3. #3
    Linux Engineer jledhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rubberman View Post
    VNC - provides true remote terminal connection, so that only display data can move to the local system. This is the most secure, in theory.
    except that unless its forwarded over ssh or using an enterprise version, its completely unencrypted. I would never publish vnc alone over the internet.

  4. #4
    Linux Guru Rubberman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jledhead View Post
    except that unless its forwarded over ssh or using an enterprise version, its completely unencrypted. I would never publish vnc alone over the internet.
    I agree wrt. the encryption issue. That said, RealVNC enterprise licenses are not expensive (from $10-50 USD depending upon the # of users). Anyway, if you don't want to pay for the enterprise license, you can install OpenVPN and run VNC over that link without the additional encryption. that approach still leaves your network vulnerable to any malware installed on the VPN client. Again, as I said before, the technology that one uses should depend upon one's needs.
    Sometimes, real fast is almost as good as real time.
    Just remember, Semper Gumbi - always be flexible!

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