A free alternative to TeamViewer and AnyDesk

Universal Connector

Article from Issue 266/2023

For a long time, TeamViewer and AnyDesk dominated the remote maintenance software market. Recently, a new player entered the scene in the form of the free and GPL-licensed RustDesk.

SSH has been considered the gold standard for managing remote machines at the command line on Linux for years. If you prefer a graphical approach, you can use, say, VNC. As long as this all happens on your organization's network, there are rarely any problems.

Access to other computers via a public network is different. Because the remote stations on private networks cannot normally be easily reached via the Internet, an go-between is required, such as TeamViewer or AnyDesk. This is a public server that knows the clients' IDs and how to reach the clients. But these two candidates have two issues in common: The sources are not open, and the commercial versions are quite expensive. For example, TeamViewer charges just under $40 per month for a single-user license, while AnyDesk charges about $15.

Free Alternative

RustDesk [1], on the other hand, shares its sources and is free of charge – even for commercial use. The project, which was launched only about one and a half years ago, is released under the GPLv3 and is freely available to everyone. The sources and binaries can be found on RustDesk's GitHub page [2]. The software, which – as the name suggests – is written in Rust, is available for many different platforms, including Linux, macOS, Windows, Android, and iOS.


Use Express-Checkout link below to read the full article (PDF).

Buy this article as PDF

Express-Checkout as PDF
Price $2.95
(incl. VAT)

Buy Linux Magazine

Get it on Google Play

US / Canada

Get it on Google Play

UK / Australia

Related content

comments powered by Disqus
Subscribe to our Linux Newsletters
Find Linux and Open Source Jobs
Subscribe to our ADMIN Newsletters

Support Our Work

Linux Magazine content is made possible with support from readers like you. Please consider contributing when you've found an article to be beneficial.