The other day while I was busy writing a technical article for the Web, I got a call from one of my relatives who hasn’t contacted me for a while. After a long gap of hibernation, I was naturally happy hearing from him, and while I was trying to find out about his wellbeing, he jumped almost immediately to the main reason why he was calling. As all my near and dear ones know by now about my expertise in information technology arena, I often get called up to give them hand in repairing their computers – and of course without any pay.
This gentleman had a bit of a knack with PC repairing himself, but this matter that he was dealing with probably went over his head, so he called me up for assistance. He gave me a short intro on the problem and gave me a password to sneak into his PC remotely, through a feature called “remote assistance”.
After enabling my remote assistant’s “easy connect” feature and logged into his PC and checked out what the thing was wrong. And finally he was a happy camper; he got his time’s worth that he spent calling me!
I just wanted to bring it to your attention that this kind of things are quite useful these days, as we often know many people around us with different levels of technical knowledge, who could come in to play remotely, have a look and fix problems that are easy to fix. That’s why I thought I would discuss this solution here today, just to walk-you-through the process how you can invite an IT- knowledgeable friend of yours, you might know, in case you encounter a problem with your PC or Laptop.
The Windows operating system comes with a tool called “remote assistance” and under “remote assistance” there is a feature called “easy connect” – that has the built in capability to connect two PCs remotely via LAN, WAN or the Internet. However, keep in mind NOT to give access to a person you don’t trust, the rights to connect to your PC.
How to Use Remote Assistance in Windows Seven
Since I am predominantly a Windows 7 user these days, the procedures generally I show are based on the Windows 7 operating system of Microsoft, and today is going to be no exception. Therefore, if you also happen to be a Windows 7 user, let’s check out how to use Windows’ Remote Assistance to do what I am talking about right now.
1. First go to your windows’ start menu and in the search box there at the bottom, type “Action Center” and hit enter. A screen will appear as shown in image 1 below.
2. As shown by the arrow sign, hit on the “Troubleshooting” icon. This will launch another screen as shown in image 2 below.
3. There is this option “Get help from a friend” on the left hand side as shown by the arrow key, click on this option. You will be redirected to another screen as shown in image 3 below.
4. Here on this screen as shown by the large green arrow, you will need to hit this “invite someone to help you button”. This will bring another screen as shown in image 4.
However, if your remote assistance feature is disabled in your PC, due to any reason, the message you will get will be something different. The system might say “this computer is not set up to send invitation” and will ask you to repair your remote assistance feature first. The system will present you with a default option to repair and activate your remote assistance feature, and you just have to let it do that automatically by hitting the “repair” button. Keep your internet connection “ON” while activating your remote access, otherwise it will not find a connection mechanism to do that.
5. If your remote assistance is enabled already, you must have reached the screen above. Click on “Use Easy Connect” as shown by the arrow to initialize a connection. This will generate and provide you a “password” that you will need to give to your “IT expert friend”. If you have figured out whom you want to invite helping you fix the PC, call him up and let him know this password that has been generated. What this person will need to do is use the same remote assistance tool, and click on the “Offer remote assistance to help someone” feature as shown in image 3, just below the big green arrow key, and use this password to login to your PC using “Easy Connect”. If this person is an IT savvy person really, he can easily figure this out how to do that after giving him the password.
You got to remember that easy connect will require an access to your PC either by the internet, or any other network connection like your office’s LAN for example. Therefore, this connection has to be active while you try to do this “easy connect”, otherwise it will not work. If you want an Internet based connection to be established, you must be online while you configure this, your helper should be online with a Windows 7 based PC, and there should be no restrictions in your internet connection settings or the internet router, if you are using one.
Disable Remote Assistance Service
On the other hand, for your protection, you can stop this remote assistance (easy connect) session by pressing the “stop sharing button” displaying on your windows screen.
Often it is also better to disable the remote assistance service after your friend has done the error correction job on your PC.
To disable this service, you have to go to windows “control panel” again, and from there click on “network and internet” -> “system and security” -> “allow remote access” feature under the “System” tab. On the next screen, after entering “yes” on the “user authentication screen”, you will see there is an option at the top, which you can select or deselect to enable or disable remote access service in your computer based on your need. Just disable it for the time being until you need further assistance through remote assistance.