I know this post is a little lengthy but take a min and read it please!
Its an old story. Trying to figure out how to better help new Ubuntu users. One possible way thats revolutionizing the IT support industry is web-meeting support (like WebEx). A currently free solution is the Adobe powered Acrobat.com ConnectNow. A free account gets you a meeting room with max of two additional attendees, but it allows for screen sharing and surrendering control of your mouse to host or another attendee so an experienced, or tech savvy person can drive. Currently screen sharing is only supported through Windows. This is a thread to get Acrobat.com to add full support for Ubuntu and Linux in general.
So why bother with remote desktop support through a provider such as Acrobat.com?
First and foremost, ease of use. Try to get a newbie to figure out how to get remote desktop through VNC on Ubuntu working, I dare you! It might work if he / she is tech savvy, but what about the person supporting them? How much of their time do you eat up by not only having to instruct the supportee to get that end working, but getting your end working as well. An interesting way that OS X has gone is by using reverse connections through an IM. I don't know much about that but I do know that, but I think this may have questionable privacy and security issues (see fourth), and with so many options for every Linux system, this may be hard to implement across separate platforms and WM and so on.
Which brings me to my second, the possibility of true cross platform support. What if you are at work on a Windows machine and are browsing the furoms, to see someone just posted an Ubuntu problem that would take you your entire break to explain by typing, but only a couple minutes to do yourself. Sign into your ConnectNow meeting room, send a private message with its URL and he sees it and joins *BAM* two minutes to connect, two minutes to resolve, and you still have 11 minutes to browse before getting back to work. (Maybe ask the person recieving the assistance to post a quick overview of what you did on his post for sharing the answer). And all of this from a Windows machine.
Third, reliability and support. Trusting a company as robust as Adobe, which I think we can all agree does not have the careless (or is it could care less) attitude like Microsoft does, is not a bad thing. This is especially true when you are relying on something to just work when someone else needs our support. Instead of having to troubleshoot connection problems and so on, we can concentrate on the issue that brought the need for the desktop support. They gave us Flash you have to give them mad props for that! They have had the attitude that the ability to read and watch should be free, for a long time! Maybe not open source but trustworthy non-the-less.
Finally, and probably most importantly, Privacy and Security! HTTPS (for those of you who don't really know what that is, thats HTTP over SSL. SSL is a very secure encryption method that is the standard for safe internet sessions like when you use your CC through PayPal), and using someone elses servers. No giving your public IP addr to a stranger or letting a stranger have file transfer ability to your system without your approving the files. Enough said!!!
If you like this idea go to:
Click on the up arrow labeled "Promote" and let Acrobat.com know it!!! (You have to register with brightidea, but it takes less than a minute and an email address to do so!)
Keep bumping this thread, until we have that support!!!