Access a Mac remotely
Do you want to remotely control another Mac for teleworking? Need to access the Mac you use in the office from home or vice versa? Do you want to access it from an iPad? You’ve come to the right tutorial.
Photo Deepu B Iyer in Pexels
If you have more than one Mac, perhaps one in the office and one at home, you may need access to a folder or program you’ve been working on.
Keep in mind that there are several ways to deal with this situation. You can remotely access a Mac from another Mac, as well as from an iPad, iPhone and even Windows.
The other scenario would be that a friend or family member needs you to fix their Mac. If you live far away from the other, you can control it remotely, without having to go anywhere.
In this article, we explain the 4 solutions available to you.
Please note that Apple once offered a service called “Access My Mac”, which could be used to access a Mac remotely and share a screen. This tool had been integrated into Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard in 2007.
However, Apple stopped offering access to my Mac when Mojave was launched in 2018.
That doesn’t mean you can’t control your Mac remotely.
Accessing my Mac has never been the only method of remote access, in fact you can use the Apple Remote Desktop software or simply store all your files in the iCloud so that everything is available from all your Apple devices. And if you have not changed to Mojave, use Access My Mac.
Using the iCloud unit
All your files are accessible from all your Apple devices if you save them to iCloud Drive. This backup can occur automatically if you consent to have your desktop files and documents stored in the iCloud.
- Open the system preferences.
- Click on the Apple ID on the right (Apple icon)
- Select iCloud from the menu on the left
You will see a list of everything you can store in the iCloud. Applications such as Pages and Numbers also allow you to save documents in the iCloud.
Note the option at the bottom of the window that suggests optimizing storage on the Mac, if you check this box, the contents of your iCloud drive will be stored on the Mac, provided you have enough space.
However, as you run out of space on your Mac, some old documents will only be saved in the iCloud.
- Finally, click on Options, next to iCloud Drive.
- Check the Desktop and Document Folders option and then select Done.
Now make sure that all the necessary files and documents are on your Desktop or saved in Documents and Notes, for example.
So you can access everything from any Apple device, including a Windows computer, through an iCloud connection.
iCloud Drive also saves space on your Mac, however, it has some drawbacks.
First of all, using iCloud Drive inevitably means paying Apple. You are offered a 5 GB space for free, but it will fill up very quickly.
So you will have to buy more storage, the 50 GB is 0.99 euros/month, the 200 GB is 2.99 euros/month and the 2 TB will cost you 9.99 euros/month.
The other unfortunate problem is that your files may be out of sync. Especially if you leave documents open on a Mac while working on them from another Mac.
iCloud then confuses the 2 versions of the same document. To avoid working on the wrong one, open your documents from the Finder.
Remember that iCloud Drive cannot be backed up. However, don’t worry because it is unlikely that Apple’s servers will go down.
However, if you lose access to your Apple ID account, you may not be able to recover your files.
Using Mac screen sharing
The second alternative is to use screen sharing. Open files and folders, close them, you can even enjoy applications that are only installed on the remote Mac.
This is a particularly practical solution when it comes to helping a friend. With screen sharing enabled, you can view the screen of one Mac from another.
To learn how to set up and use the Screen Sharing feature in MacOS, follow this detailed tutorial.
Using Apple Remote Desktop
The third way to operate another Mac remotely is through Apple Remote Desktop. With the latter, you run applications and access files installed on another MacOS.
Apple Remote Desktop allows you to install and configure applications, support remote users and create detailed reports. It is ideal for education.
It costs $79.99, and you can download it from the Mac App Store.
We will not go into the details of the Remote Desktop configuration, because if you’re just looking for a way to access your second Mac remotely, it’s probably too late…
Using Google Chrome Remote Desktop
Here’s a free solution: the Chrome Remote Desktop web browser will help you take remote control of your iPad, iPhone, and Mac.
You must have a Google account and use the Chrome browser. To install the Chrome Remote Desktop application on your Mac, follow this dedicated tutorial.
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In addition, in the App Store apps you can get these apps for free.