What is the best method to connect to Office LAN?

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lexus37

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Jun 21, 2006
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Hi,

I'm trying to determine the best way for me and users to connect to the office LAN and desktops. I initially had a VPN setup and working, but had to switch from a old net gear to a new linksys wireless router and everything is screwed up now. I haven't been able to get the vpn back up. I have been able to setup remote desktop and have port 3389 forwarded to the server, but I don't want the other users messing with the server. The users need to be able to logon to there computer as well as grab files and documents off the network/server.

This is a small company, but growing very quickly and I'm not sure what to do. Any suggestions?

Network Setup

Linksys Router w/ Static Ip setup
Windows Server 2003 Small Business Edition with all computers on one domain.
20 clients
 
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Would configuring each workstation for remote desktop solve the problem? They don't all need to use the same port.

Then each user could connect to their work computer from home and work with whatever files they need to.
 

lexus37

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Jun 21, 2006
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That sounds like it would possibly work, but how do I do that? Do I need to assign a port to every pc and have the port forward in the router to the correct pc?
 

lexus37

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I have tried do that, but with no success. Here is the setup I did:

Remote desktop is already enabled since I am lazy to walk to the employee's workstation
I have changed the port in the registry on my pc to 3337 and another computer to 3392 to test.
Have port forwarding to the correct ip address on the router.
I entered the public IP xx.xx.xx.xx:3337, xx.xx.xx.xx:3392 in remote desktop
No connection cannot connect

I have the default port 3389 forwarded to the server. So if I connect using the public ip xx.xx.xx.xx it will connect directly there with no problems. I'm not sure what I am doing wrong.
 
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Can you remote desktop from within the network. You need to be able to get that working before you can do it past a router.

Also, did you open up the port on any firewall on the computer.
 

lexus37

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I can remote desktop remotely within the network. I did not open the port on the firewall. I just checked the firewall and it has the default port. It will not let me change it for some reason, It is saying it is in a group policy. How do I take that off?
 
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You need to open a port on the computer's firewall to reflect the new one being used. Just add that port rather than trying to change an exisiting one.
 

lexus37

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Jun 21, 2006
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You are awesome! Just tested and worked also your site is great! I got my VPN to start working again! It was the port forwarding! Thank you for your help!
 
Joined
Apr 24, 2007
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a software solution would be better though, opening ports with NATing is not very secure and quite cumbersome for administration and limited to one application.

I would recommend a good software solution at low cost instead.

GoToMyPc (http://www.gotomypc.com) is a good start if you only need remote screen access and the cost is quite low (there is a free trial option). If you want a real VPN solution, where users can directly access the remote LAN as well as applications like RDP, I've found the following software quite good WallCooler (http://www.vedivi.com) is free for normal usage and is very easy to install.

I started using gotomypc and it is quite good. After a while I started using WallCooler because I was more and more working from home and preferred to directly access remote resources (mainly network folders and database servers) rather than my remote computer at the office.
 
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Those are completely different programs than VPN.

If you need remote access, there are programs that are no cost.
 
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