Teamviewer is a proprietary software and service for support purposes. While the company has several plans for enterprise users, Teamviewer is free of charge for private use. The program does not run natively under Linux, but comes ready-to-run with its own version of the Windows emulator Wine.
Teamviewer enables hassle-free access to remote desktops via desktop sharing over the Internet, regardless of whether Windows, Linux or Mac is installed. For example, you could remotely connect from Ubuntu to a Windows desktop, as long as Teamviewer is installed on both sides. This makes it possible to provide remote assistance to family and friends or to control a computer remotely.
Without knowing the unique ID number generated by the program and a password, a supporter will not be able to access a remote computer – you don’t want to have “big brother” watch and control your computer, do you? In addition, a blacklist or whitelist can be set up to restrict access for the support person.
Security-conscious users should adjust the rather lax settings in the program’s settings menu and also set up a Teamviewer account. There, a longer password can be assigned and two-factor authentication may be activated.
Nevertheless, all communication runs via Teamviewer servers. So you have to trust the company, which is based in the southern German town of Göppingen.
How to install Teamviewer on Ubuntu
DEB-packages are available for download only on the vendor’s website in 64 und 32 bit variants. Once downloaded, install the package with dpkg and – if necessary – take care of missing dependencies such as the QT toolkit.sudo dpkg -i teamviewer_*.deb
sudo apt -f install
Be patient: Teamviewer takes its time for the first start.
During installation, Teamviewer adds the company’s repository to the system and downloads the corresponding signatur key, so that future updates can be performed automatically. However, this does not work anymore in Ubuntu 22.04, because Teamviewer the depreciated key management with apt-key. Moreover, their key must be converted to the new binary format. Therefore, the key must be installed manually as follows:
wget -O- https://download.teamviewer.com/download/linux/signature/TeamViewer2017.asc | gpg --dearmor | sudo tee /etc/apt/keyrings/teamviewer.gpg
Finally, the location of the key must be referenced in /etc/apt/sources.list.d/teamviewer.list. The respective deb one-liner looks like that:
deb [signed-by=/etc/apt/keyrings/teamviewer.gpg] https://linux.teamviewer.com/deb stable main
Like Teamviewer, Anydesk is proprietary software which is free for private use. Googles Chrome Browser offers a remote desktop für free. Remmina is open source client software for direct connections without a server in between using VNC or RDP.