If you’re a bit of a computer whiz, then you probably often get asked by friends and family to sort out their latest Mac disasters.
However, if you live far apart, have a busy lifestyle or can’t get to them easily, you might find Crossloop a godsend. There are many applications out there that allow you to share desktops but perhaps none that do it as easily and simply than Crossloop. I first tried Crossloop on Windows a few years ago and a Mac version has been long overdue. The great thing is that the Mac version supports access of Windows machines also so you can help out both Mac and Windows users. Nowadays, Crossloop also serves as an online marketplace where you can connect not only to friends, but to online experts who, for an hourly fee, will help you with any technical issues
The key to this program’s appeal is its simplicity. After installing CrossLoop, you are prompted whether you want to create an account although this is optional as a way of monitoring your connection activities. Whether you choose to sign-up or not, afterwards you will see a welcome screen with two tabs. Select the ‘Join’ tab if you would like to connect and control a friend’s Mac or PC. Select the ‘Host’ tab if you would like to temporarily share access to your Mac or PC. This host tab contains an important 12-digit access code that your friend will need to enter to connect to your machine. Obviously, the only requirement is that your friend has CrossLoop installed too to initiate a session. Once done, you’re ready to go. A separate window opens with your friend’s desktop and you can tinker with it to your heart's content.
Obviously, the main concern with such P2P connections is speed and security. As regards speed, you can choose whether to share in low or high quality, the former being faster and recommended for slow internet connetions. As far as security is concerned, the developers maintain that all sent information is highly encrypted with a 128-bit algorithm using the randomly generated 12-digit access code mentioned earlier. There’s no need to worry about anyone accessing your PC without permission either – a popup requesting permission from you alerts you before any information is exchanged. The only minor drawback of CrossLoop is that it doesn’t support multiple connections although if for most people seeking technical help, this is probably not really desirable or practical either. Most recently, CrossLoop has introduced file sending plus an online marketplace of experts which enables you to find professional Mac specialists who can help with your problems.
CrossLoop really is an excellent application for what it offers i.e. simple and effective remote connections. The fact that it is free only adds to its appeal considering similar programs such as Copilot charge anything up to $5 for just 24 hours of use.
- Mac-to-Windows Compatibility, Drag and Drop File Transfer