Start by visiting the Logmein website and click the ‘Create an account’ link to the right of the page. Click the green ACCESS COMPUTERS REMOTELY icon, type your email address and choose a password before selecting the correct country from the dropdown menu and clicking Continue. A confirmation email will be sent: click the link this contains to activate the account. Meanwhile, when the Add Computer dialogue box appears, click the Download button to download the free Logmein software – this is required in order to make your PC remotely accessible. If the File Download Security Warning dialogue box appears, click Save and choose a location for the downloaded file. Firefox users should select Save File to save the download to Firefox’s default download folder. While the file is downloading, click the ‘Go to My Computers’ button displayed in the Add Computer dialogue box.
Now locate and double-click the file you just downloaded. If a security warning is displayed, click Run to continue and click Next. Click Next followed by I Agree, ensure that the Typical (Recommended) option is selected and click Next. Type in a descriptive name for the PC to help identify it later and click Next. Now type and confirm an access code that should be used to protect the computer. Click Next, choose where the program should be installed and click Next; once the installation is complete, click the Finish button. Logmein will now launch. We’ll explore its options later, but now it’s time to install the remote-access software on the tablet or smartphone.
Launch the relevant app store (App Store on Apple iOS devices and Android Market on Android gadgets). Remember, we’re using an iPad: the precise process will vary, depending on the device. Tap the Search button. Type Logmein into the search bar and tap Search. When the search results are displayed, tap the Logmein price label and install the app, typing in your Apple ID if prompted to do so. Once the installation is complete, launch the app and tap in the email address and password supplied in Step 1 and tap the Log Me In button. Once you are logged into your account, an entry should appear for the computer on which the Logmein software was installed in Step 2.
Click the name of the computer in the list and tap the first of the three icons that pop out from below – the one that features a monitor and a mouse cursor. There will be a slight delay as your device communicates with the remote computer. You will then be prompted to tap in the access code created in Step 2. Once you’ve done that, tap the green Log In button and the remote-access ‘session’ will begin. To start, a series of hints is displayed that explains how to control Logmein. Read these and tap the Continue to Computer button.
It makes sense to use Logmein in landscape mode (holding your device so you’re viewing it widescreen), as this better matches the screen ratio of most computer monitors. Notice that an image of a mouse appears on the screen beneath a cursor: drag this around to mimic moving the mouse on the remote computer. To make a left-click, just tap it. To switch mouse buttons (so that right-clicks can be made instead), tap the small mouse icon at the very bottom of the screen. To type, tap the small keyboard icon at the bottom of the screen – this can be hidden again by tapping the keyboard key to the bottom right of the screen. Remember, though the results of these actions appear on the iPad’s screen, they’re actually happening on the remote PC: if you were sat in front of it, watching, it would appear as though a ghost were at the controls.
There are a few settings that can be configured that change the way Logmein works. This can be done from the tablet, smartphone or the PC. On an iPad, for example, tap the cog icon at the bottom of the screen and use the options to choose image quality and network settings to help optimise performance. You can also change the way scrolling works in the app (this is useful, because the remote computer’s display is likely to be larger than that of the iPad). Additional settings can be configured from the PC. Launch Logmein and click the Options link followed by Preferences. Here you can opt to hide desktop wallpaper (making operation quicker at the tablet/smartphone end), change your password and configure security settings.