Most people work frequently with more than one computer. The most common situation is the one where you have a computer at work and of course, another one at home. Surely, it must have happened to you to need a file from your home computer when you are at work, or the other way around. A possibility would to be to keep your important files on a memory stick and have that permanently updated, but to me it seems inconvenient since you have to be always careful to have the latest files on it. A much simpler solution would be to use a software application that enables you to access your computer remotely.
The developers at Yazsoft, who have also released the very successful download manager Speed Download, bring to your attention a new application that will definitely make your life easier. You won't have to transfer your files from the office to your home computer by using memory sticks or external hard drives – with ShareTool, remote access has just become a lot easier and intuitive.The Looks
The main window of ShareTool is very simple and easy to use. Basically, you only need to choose whether you want to use the current computer as a server, to share files, or as a client, to connect to the remote network. ShareTool also features a Preferences window, from which you can configure the sharing settings and select the Bonjour services to be added automatically.The Works
ShareTool enables you to securely access your remote network from anywhere. It's easy to configure on both computers and there's no need for any technical skills because almost the entire configuration process is done automatically. You just have to install and start the application both on the computer you want to share and on the one that will connect to it. Make sure that you have enabled the 'Remote Login' option in the Sharing system preference pane on the shared computer.
Another requirement of the application is for your router to have UPnP (Universal Plug and Play) or NAT-PMP (Network Address Translation – Port Mapping Protocol) enabled. After enabling the necessary protocols and services, press the Share button and ShareTool will automatically configure the router and provide a secure way for you to share your network.
All you need to do now is connect from the remote computer using the given address and port and in just a few moments ShareTool notifies you that a secure connection has been established. After providing a valid user name and password, the program opens a new window that shows a list of available Bonjour services that you can access, including Apple file sharing, iTunes music sharing and even screen sharing.
At this moment you can access all the remote services from the applications you work with everyday: Finder, iTunes, iPhoto and any others that use TCP/IP and Bonjour services. The best feature of ShareTool is the fact that all the communication to the remote network is strongly encrypted ensuring the security level you would expect from a remote connection utility. The app also gives you the possibility to securely surf the web using your favorite browser.
ShareTool provides various customization options that you can modify from the Preferences window. There are several actions that the app can perform when sharing your network: automatically send emails to a specified address, update a dynamic domain name, launch applications or put the display to sleep.
In the Remote Access tab you can choose the types of services to be added by default when connecting to a remote network. The available services are: iTunes Music Sharing, iPhoto Picture Sharing, Apple File Sharing and Screen Sharing.
ShareTool checks for updates automatically, making sure that you always have the latest features and services available in the application, and it can also be set to launch at login and start sharing as soon as it opens.
In the demo version you can access all the functions and benefits that ShareTool has to offer, but it only lets you connect to the remote services for 15 minutes at a time. If you don't want to reconnect every 15 minutes, you need to purchase a license for $20. Since ShareTool was designed to be used with two computers, a license of the application is valid for both of them.The Good
ShareTool does exactly what its name says: helps you share files and services on your computer and access them remotely. File sharing is extremely easy and with this program you get full control of your network and all the services it provides.The Bad
ShareTool's main purpose is to provide easy access to your network from a remote computer with as little configuration as possible, but even though the application is intuitive and easy to use, if you don't have any technical skills and the UPnP and NAT-PMP protocols aren't enabled by default on your router, you will need to do some research to make it work.The Truth
ShareTool helps you create a secure connection to your network remotely and access Bonjour services with just a few clicks. You will no longer have to store different copies of your documents on multiple computers. ShareTool will definitely improve your user experience and give you full control of your computer from any place in the world.Here are some snapshots of the application in action: