How to use Chrome Remote Desktop

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Did you know you can use your Windows or Mac computer remotely, using your Chromebook? Chrome Remote Desktop allows your Chrome OS device to do this. It’s a simple and helpful feature not many Chromebook users take advantage of, but it could help you make your Chromebook your go-to computer.

In this article we will show you how Chrome Remote Desktop is set up and how it works, so read through the instructions and give it a go!

Why would I want to use Windows or Mac OSX on a Chromebook?

Chrome OS is fast, simple and reliable. In many cases, it is the best computer to use – it packages all the power of cloud computing, with offline tasks constantly improving. There is one main complaint about Chromebooks, though – the platform simply doesn’t support many programs and apps that people need.

Such apps include hardware-intensive programs like Photoshop and video editors. These are readily available for more complex desktop operating systems, which is where Chrome Remote Desktop comes into play.

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How to set-up Chrome Remote desktop on your main computer

Chrome Remote Desktop works through the Chrome browser, which means you have to set it up on your main (Windows or Mac) computer too. Here is how you set it up on your main computer.

  • From your main computer (computer you want to access remotely), open your Chrome browser.
  • Go to the Chrome Web Store and download the Chrome Remote Desktop app.
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  • Click no the Chrome Remote Desktop app (either from the app launcher or from the Apps page in Chrome) and select “Continue”.
  • Select the account you want to use and accept its permissions.
  • Under My Computers, select the “Get Started” button and then click on “Enable remote connections”.
  • Depending on your computer’s operating system, software may be downloaded. Install it and then go back to the website.
  • Choose a PIN number, then follow instructions.
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  • You will be asked for the PIN number, enter it and click on “Enable”.
  • Your computer is now enabled and ready to be accessed remotely.

How to access your main computer from your Chromebook

After setting up your main computer, you are only a few steps away from remotely controlling it from your Chromebook. There is a one-time set-up you have to complete. Here is the procedure, as well as how to access your main computer.

  • Your Chromebook already comes with the Chrome Remote Desktop app, find it in your app drawer and click on it to open it.
  • You must authorize your Chromebook. You will be informed of this in a pop-up box – click on “Continue”.
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  • You will be asked to grant your Chromebook permissions, Accept it.
  • Under My Computers, click on “Get Started” and select which computer you want to access.
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  • After you click on the selected computer, you will be asked for the PIN number. Type it in and click “Connect”.
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  • Voila! You are now controlling your computer from your Chromebook.

Done!

After all of this is done, you can now easily access your Mac or Windows computers straight from your Chrome OS device. You can now remotely run programs like Photoshop, Premier and any app you have on your computer. All from your Chromebook!

By the way, this works from any location, as long as both computers have an internet connection. You could have your Chromebook anywhere in the world, while your other computer is at home.

Give it a try and let us know how it goes! If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, you can always reach out in the comments below.

Screenshot 2014-03-13 at 3.46.25 PM



  • Has anyone found if this service can be connected to via an android tablet?

  • jofredmond

    I think that at this time there is no remote access for Android tablets but I have seen stories about them working on this feature.

  • jofredmond

    I use this set up to fun an old computer that I have hooked up to my stereo. This way I am able to set any place in my house and listen to music I have stored in the cloud, on itunes or spotify. It works really well. I also use it to run programs like NASCAR Raceview on my Chromebook. I also will hook up my iphone or Nook and remotely add items. Love this feature.

    One question I have is how much bandwidth is used in these remote sessions.

  • Mike Manning

    I’ve known about this for a while, but hadn’t really looked into it. This might be a great way for my kids with Chromebooks to play minecraft and WoW.

  • Guest

    Unfortunately Chrome Remote Desktop has a problem with mouselook. It’s not very precise so attempting to look anywhere in those 3D worlds results in huge movements, no matter how subtle your motion is. Source: experience. This may be a bug, or it could be design.

  • John Smyth

    Has anyone found out how to get audio from the computer that you are remotely connected to to play through your chromebook?

  • Iyanda Taiwo

    hello this information is very good,i have one problem with the chrome book is that . i want to download a meta trader 4 soft ware on chrome book,but it response is i dont have a device to support meta trader4 and direct me to chrome web store to get apps that support the device which i did.but is till the response is it can not be support.pls if you have any ideal pls let me know,i will really appreciate it thanks.

  • Aliasgar Babat

    Google is impressive, and I actually use Chrome remote desktop for remotely accessing computers … But it’s just not secure enough for my work. I use RHUB’s servers for remote access b/c it works from behind my firewall.

  • jdizzl

    Is there anyway to make the resolution look better… it looks like crap, as my desktop is on a 20+” monitor and my laptop is 11″ …anyway to zoom?

  • hello tried it installed in windows 7 acer computer and using windows 8 asus laptop i remote access the ascer computer

    you might check how i did it.
    http://youtu.be/uvS6LdVFWYw