How to set up remote access to servers

Man working with a laptop and monitor with remote access to server


#GoToGetsIT: This article is part of an ongoing series from GoTo’s thought leaders on the frontlines: Our Solutions Consultants deeply understand our customers’ unique challenges and connect the right solutions to meet their goals using GoTo technology. Here, they share their industry knowledge on what it takes to help businesses everywhere thrive in a remote or hybrid world.

In the current trend towards remote and flexible work, companies must centralize their IT infrastructure and asset management for enhanced efficiency, visibility, and data security. Remote server management is a crucial part of this strategy. In this article we'll explain the benefits of setting up remote access to servers, outline the required capabilities, and detail the setup process to assist your IT operations.

Benefits of having remote access to servers

Remote server access offers a secure, accessible method of staying agile in today's digital business landscape. Here are some benefits of being able to remotely control a server:

  • Enhanced flexibility: Remote server access supports the evolving demands of remote working, appealing to employees who value productivity and flexibility.
  • Centralized management: It enables centralized control over all server-related tasks, boosting IT productivity.
  • Real-time insights: Remote server access grants you a bird's-eye view of system performance, allowing you to leverage real-time insights to optimize business processes.
  • Proactive issue resolution: With remote server access software, you can monitor network activities and receive timely alerts, enabling proactive responses to potential issues before they lead to costly downtime or negatively impact the customer experience.
  • Improved security: The visibility into systems and endpoints enhances security, particularly essential in the current work-from-anywhere trend.
  • Anywhere access: Employees can securely access company data and files from any location at any time, simplifying device management and technical support.

Key remote control server capabilities to consider

When selecting a remote monitoring and management (RMM) solution to support remote access to servers, you need to look for a variety of essential features:

  • Robust Security Controls: Look for end-to-end 256-bit AES encryption, multi-factor authentication (MFA), and zero trust architecture.
  • Operating System Compatibility: The solution should be compatible with various operating systems, such as Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS.
  • Administrative Tools: Opt for server management, IT automation, and collaboration tools to streamline administrative tasks and boost IT productivity when troubleshooting.
  • Integration Capabilities: The solution should seamlessly integrate with existing tools (like ticketing software) and offer custom configurations to align with your workflows.
  • Affordability and Scalability: Choose an RMM solution with flexible licensing options that can scale with your business growth.

How to set up remote access to servers

First we will illustrate how to enable remote access to servers using an RMM platform. Here's a step-by-step guide to enabling Remote Desktop on Windows Server:

  1. Open the Server Manager from the Start menu.
  2. Click on "Local Server." The default setting should be Remote Desktop.
  3. Select "Disabled" to open the System Properties window in the Remote tab.
  4. Click "Allow remote desktop connections to this computer" in the System Properties window.
  5. Click "OK" on the message regarding firewall rules.
  6. Click "Select Users" to specify employees who can access the system via Remote Desktop.

Next, you can set up remote management with GoTo Resolve and leverage its advanced features to enhance security and IT efficiency:

  1. Enable MFA and implement our zero trust architecture to safeguard remote access sessions from potential threats.
  2. Set up remote PowerShell access, task scheduling, and system diagnostics to automate workflows and elevate IT efficiency.
  3. Utilize collaboration tools to enable IT staff from different locations to work together via chat, calls, and file transfers.
  4. Configure real-time system alerts to spot trends and proactively address potential problems.
  5. Customize the software, shortcuts, remote session settings, and user interface to suit your preferences and workflows.

Alternative remote access tool for simplified experience

While following the steps above to set up remote access using built-in offerings like Microsoft can provide comprehensive control, some businesses may seek a more streamlined approach. If you're looking for an alternative that offers a simplified user experience, consider using a remote access tool like GoTo Resolve. This tool is designed to provide unattended access to servers, making the process far more straightforward than traditional methods.

GoTo Resolve operates without the need for a VPN, simplifying the setup process and making it more user-friendly. With VPNs, users may experience difficulty with configuration settings or struggle with network speed and stability. GoTo Resolve, however, eliminates these potential issues, offering a seamless and reliable connection to remote servers. Its user-friendly interface makes it easy for your IT team to manage and control servers from anywhere, anytime. Moreover, like the traditional methods, GoTo Resolve also includes robust security features such as end-to-end encryption and multi-factor authentication, ensuring your remote connections are secure.

In a nutshell, if your organization values simplicity and ease of use without compromising on features and security, GoTo Resolve could be a perfect fit for your remote server access needs. It is designed with user convenience in mind, making remote server management an efficient and hassle-free task.

GoTo Resolve: Revolutionizing remote control and server management

Remote server access is an essential component for modern businesses. With a robust RMM solution like GoTo Resolve, you can facilitate remote access and enhance IT productivity without compromising security. Used by businesses and IT professionals worldwide, GoTo Resolve offers an extensive feature set, robust security measures, and a user-friendly experience that delivers cost-effective remote access capabilities to keep your business competitive. Discover what GoTo Resolve can do for you and get started for free.

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