How To Best Help Mom With MacBook

Kadelic

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Jan 4, 2010
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#1
I got my first Mac, a MacBook Pro, last December and I absolutely love it. My mom doesn't own a computer at all and is somewhat "tech challenged" let's just say. My sister has talked about giving her their old Dell/Vista laptop when she and her husband upgrade here pretty soon. The problem with that is, since I live in the same town as my mom, I'll be the one who has to help her set it up and troubleshoot any problems she might have. I decided to nip that in the bud, and to insure a better experience for both of us, just ordered her a refurbished MacBook. The specs are here. It ships with Snow Leopard but is eligible for a free upgrade to Lion.

I have two questions:

1. Will this notebook perform well enough with Lion or should i just leave it on Snow Leopard? Keep in mind my mom will primarily use it for surfing the web, photo sorting and sharing, and possibly a genealogy app. I'm thinking this model will run Lion just fine, I'm just hoping someone with the same model/specs can corroborate. I'd really like to put Lion on her Mac so we can use AirDrop to conveniently exchange family photos, etc.

2. Can someone recommend an app that I could use to remotely view her mac from mine in case she has some questions or trouble when I'm out of town or don't have time to stop by and help? I've used iTeleport to access my own Mac with my iPhone but I want something that will work from Mac to Mac. I only anticipate having to tweak some system preferences here and there but I'd like to have access to other utilities and files if need be. I have searched and came across apps like TeamViewer and others. I don't mind a paid app but I'd like to avoid spending the $80 for something like Apple's Remote Desktop (which I'm not sure is even what I need).

Any and all input is appreciated :)
 

Rboileau

New Member
Mar 20, 2011
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#2
Absolutely do the upgrade. That MacBook will work fine with it.

For my daughter who is away at college I use screen sharing via VNC. When she has a problem she just connects to my network over VPN and then I connect to her machine with the built in screen sharing.

To do, I use dyndns.org to link my router to an external ISP. I use easyVPN to host VPN connections on OS X Lion. On her machine in network settings I built the VPN connection. When she needs help she just connects to my network.

On your router you need to open the VPN Ports and link them to your machine.
 

Europa

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#3
Awesome gift for your mom! (y) It will run Lion just fine. You can do screen sharing for free with iChat. Just set up an AIM account for her and turn screen sharing on.
 

Kadelic

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#4
Thanks so much for the replies, I can't wait to see the look on her face when I give her the MacBook.

I think I'll give iChat a go first, the VNC/VPN method seems more complicated. I've never used iChat or AIM before, do I need an AIM account as well? Her and I both have gmail, will a Google Talk account work? This help page for iChat 4.0 on Leopard says it will, I'm guessing it still applies to 6.0 and Lion. I'm sure any other questions I have will be more relevant once I have her Mac set up on Lion. Thanks again y'all :)
 

iP5

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Sep 7, 2010
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#6
I put teamviewer and put my mom in an older iMac for the same reason.

Agree that VNC seemed more complicated. Teamviewer is a no brainer.

Sent from my Desire HD using Tapatalk
 

gibby71

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Jan 8, 2008
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#7
I use logmein.com for remote of my Moms Mac. I just use the free version on the site. I have it installed on my PC and Macs as well. I like it because I can use any PC/Mac, iPhone, or iPad (iOS app does have a charge for the app) to log in and help her or access any of my PCs or Mac.
 

Europa

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#9
VNC is great and I use it for my own computers, but screensharing with other Mac owners is a built-in feature of OS X, so there is no need to install programs on their computer and there is no setup required. Just request to share their screen in iChat. Personally, I'd feel much more comfortable with this option if I needed someone to remotely view my screen because I would authorize it each time and they would only have access when I wanted them to rather than full access at all times.
 

Kadelic

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#10
Using iChat is so easy it's almost funny :cool: AirDrop is the bomb too! We also used FaceTime on her Mac to video call my sister on her iPhone4. My mom is in awe of her MacBook and I'm officially covered on birthday and Xmas gifts for the rest of my life. I still need to deliver on Mother's Day though ;) Thanks again everyone!