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Thread: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

  1. #1
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    Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    Hey, my monitor broke and I can't get a new one for about a week, and there are files I need on my PC. I was wondering if I could move those files to a memory stick by using only the tty1 CLI, or better yet, get access to the PC via my laptop. How would I do this?

    Could I use remote desktop? (My previous experience with remote desktop didn't go well, but maybe since the PC and the laptop are on the same network it would be easier?)
    Signatures are a myth.

  2. #2
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    You can use SSH for that, but if you don't have the SSH sever installed on the target machine, you will have a hard time installing it without a monitor...
    「明後日の夕方には帰ってるからね。」


  3. #3
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bachstelze View Post
    You can use SSH for that, but if you don't have the SSH sever installed on the target machine, you will have a hard time installing it without a monitor...
    Could I not just boot it up, press ctrl+alt+F1, type my user name and password, then sudo apt-get install openssh-server? Will it even boot without a monitor?
    Last edited by Mr_VeRiTy; June 26th, 2011 at 02:15 PM. Reason: spelling
    Signatures are a myth.

  4. #4
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    It will boot without a monitor, and I think that will work, you might have to hit Y once its downloaded.

    You'll have to have someone with more experience answer you for sure though.

  5. #5
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    I think openssh is installed now (I used "eject" to test if the commands were going through.) But what do I do next?
    Signatures are a myth.

  6. #6
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    But what do I do next?
    See if you can connect to your desktop. I hope laptop is running linux.
    On laptop
    Code:
    ssh verity@LAN.IP.OF.DESKTOP
    Answer the prompts.
    Can you login and connect?
    exit to close the connection

    If that worked then put this into nautilus:
    Code:
    sftp://verity@LAN.IP.OF.DESKTOP/home/verity/
    Press return. Give your password.
    Now you can drag and drop files between PCs

  7. #7
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    Quote Originally Posted by tredegar View Post
    See if you can connect to your desktop. I hope laptop is running linux.
    On laptop
    Code:
    ssh verity@LAN.IP.OF.DESKTOP
    Answer the prompts.
    Can you login and connect?
    exit to close the connection

    If that worked then put this into nautilus:
    Code:
    sftp://verity@LAN.IP.OF.DESKTOP/home/verity/
    Press return. Give your password.
    Now you can drag and drop files between PCs
    The laptop is running linux. I don't think the PC is connected to my wireless router.. How do I connect from the terminal? Gnome usually connects me automatically when I log in so I thought logging in by gdm would connect me, but gdm doesn't seem to be starting without the monitor. (I tried "sudo service gdm restart", but it didn't work). This also means openssh wasn't installed.
    Signatures are a myth.

  8. #8
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    Very clever if you can get this to work.

    Before we get too carried away with the clever tricks
    have you checked if you can use your TV as a monitor?

    Assuming not, here is another clever trick. You might be able to get your machine to talk to you and tell you what it is doing. If you have espeak installed then
    Code:
    pwd | espeak
    will tell you what directory you are in
    Code:
    ls | espeak
    will tell you what files are in that directory. And so on.
    Life's a pitch. And then you sing!

  9. #9
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    Quote Originally Posted by hawthornso23 View Post
    Very clever if you can get this to work.

    Before we get too carried away with the clever tricks
    have you checked if you can use your TV as a monitor?

    Assuming not, here is another clever trick. You might be able to get your machine to talk to you and tell you what it is doing. If you have espeak installed then
    Code:
    pwd | espeak
    will tell you what directory you are in
    Code:
    ls | espeak
    will tell you what files are in that directory. And so on.
    I don't have it installed, but I am definitely gonna remember that. And no, my tv is ooold.
    Signatures are a myth.

  10. #10
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    Re: Can I access a computer with no monitor?

    The laptop is running linux.
    Good
    I don't think the PC is connected to my wireless router.
    Easiest way to connect it is to connect it to your router with an ethernet cable (you might have to move it close to the router).
    Boot, and you should be connected to your LAN / the internet.

    Your router can tell you what LAN IP it has assigned to the desktop. You will need to know this. Check by logging into your router from the laptop, and getting it to list the connected devices.

    If the desktop is not listed as connected:

    Login to your desktop as yourself. Type
    Code:
    sudo dhclient eth0
    Give your password
    Press return
    Wait a minute, then try
    Code:
    sudo apt-get install openssh-server espeak
    Give your password
    Press return
    Watch your router's lights they should indicate something is happening.
    Wait a few minutes
    See if espeak was installed (I like that idea!)
    Code:
    echo hello | espeak
    If it was, then the openssh-server should be there as well. Remember, your volume may be turned down too low for you to hear anything, so silence does not necessarily mean "fail".

    Now try connecting from your laptop with ssh. You must do this once before you can use sftp and nautilus to connect.

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