TeamViewer Review

A Full Review of TeamViewer, a Free Remote Access/Desktop Program

TeamViewer is a free remote access program filled with features you don't normally find in similar products. It's easy to use and works on pretty much any device.

TeamViewer remote control tab
What We Like
  • Completely free to use.

  • Supports chat (text, video, and voice over IP).

  • Remote printing is allowed.

  • Supports Wake-on-LAN (WOL).

  • No port forwarding configurations are necessary.

  • Works with multiple monitors.

  • Lots of ways to control the computer.

What We Don't Like
  • The "permanent" ID number might change unexpectedly.

  • Might stop working if it thinks you're using it for commercial reasons.

This program used to top our list of the best free remote access software. However, many users have reported that the software, while free for personal use only, falsely identifies that they're using it for commercial use and demands payment. You might not have that experience, but if you do, please consider using a TeamViewer alternative like Remote Utilities or Chrome Remote Desktop.

More About TeamViewer

  • The latest version of the program works on Windows 11, 10, 8, and 7, while an older version can be installed on Windows Vista and Windows XP. It also works on macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, and a few other operating systems.
  • If you have an iOS device, you can share your screen with a remote TeamViewer user.
  • You can remotely reboot a computer into Safe Mode and then automatically reconnect with TeamViewer.
  • No router configurations are necessary to set it up.
  • A remote installation of the program can be updated with ease.
  • Remote sessions can be recorded to a video file so you can easily review it later.
  • Share a single application window or the entire desktop with another user.
  • Files, images, text, folders, and screenshots can be transferred to and from two computers using either the file transfer tool in TeamViewer or the regular clipboard function.
  • Files can also be transferred.
  • A whiteboard lets you draw and highlight objects on a remote screen.
  • A remote system information tool is included to easily see the basic hardware, OS, and network information of the computer you're connected to.
  • TeamViewer can be used as a portable program for quick access, or installed to always accept remote connections.

How TeamViewer Works

TeamViewer has a couple different downloads you can use to access a remote computer, but they both work nearly the same. You would choose one over the other based on your needs.

Each installation will give out a unique ID number that's tied to that computer. It actually never changes, even if you update or reinstall TeamViewer. It's this ID number you'll share with another user so they can access your computer.

Although this ID number is supposed to never change, some users have reported that there's did, in fact, become an entirely new number randomly. If you plan on relying on TeamViewer as your only remote access program, you might consider installing another tool on the side, just in case you have to find your ID number while away from your computer.

The full version of TeamViewer is absolutely free and is the program you need to install if you wish to set up a computer for constant remote access so you can always make a connection when you're away from it, otherwise known as unattended access.

You can log into your account so that you can easily keep track of the remote computers you have access to.

For instant, spontaneous support, you can use QuickSupport. This version of the software is portable, so you can run it quickly and immediately capture the ID number and share it with someone.

If you're helping out a friend or family member, the easiest solution would be for them to install the QuickSupport program. When they launch it, they'll be shown an ID number and password that they must share with you.

You can connect to the QuickSupport computer with either the full program or the QuickSupport version—they both allow remote connections to be established. So you can actually both install the portable version and still make a solid connection with each other, which would result in the quickest method of remote access for both parties.

If you're looking to set up unattended access to connect to your own computer when away, you just need to set up an admin password that never changes. Once that's completed, you just have to sign on to your account from a browser, mobile device, or computer with TeamViewer installed to make the connection.

Thoughts on TeamViewer

TeamViewer has been one of our favorite remote desktop programs for a while. The QuickSupport version is so simple and easy to use, it's always a top suggestion for me when providing remote support to anyone, and it's one of the few remote access programs that lets you remotely view the screen of an iPhone or iPad.

The fact that TeamViewer doesn't require you to set up port forwards is a solid plus because most people won't want to go to the hassle to configure router changes to accept remote connections. On top of that, all that has to be shared is the ID and password that's clearly seen when you first open the program, so it's rather simple for everyone to use.

If you're looking to always have access to your own computer from afar, TeamViewer doesn't fall short with this demand either. You can set up TeamViewer so you can always make a connection to it, which is wonderful if you need to exchange files or view a program on your computer when away from it.

One thing we don't like all that much is that the browser version is difficult to use. While it is possible to connect to another computer through a browser with TeamViewer, it's just not as effortless as it is with the desktop version. However, we can hardly complain because there is a desktop version available and it is easy to use.

Something else about TeamViewer that seems to stop most people from using it (and why we don't recommend it above other remote access tools) is that it might suspect that you're using the program for commercial reasons even when you're not, and will thus stop working until you pay for it. The only other solution you have if that happens is to contact their customer support.

As mentioned above, another odd glitch in this program is that it might one day change your ID number, making it impossible to access your computer remotely unless you know the updated number. This is probably a rare occurrence, but one you should be aware of.

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