RAv3 and VNC

One of the joys of LGfL 2.0 is that a lovely firewall is installed in your school, which by default blocks nearly anything getting in or out. One of the things that is blocked is Log Me In, a remote access tools used by schools to log into servers etc when offsite. This has not been enormously popular, but thankfully there is an alternative which is in many ways better. It’s called RAv3.

RAv3 is a service offered by Atomwide, which uses some clever Cisco back-end to allow secure remote access. I don’t really understand it all completely, but there’s quite a lot of information on their support site. Once it’s turned on, you can set up which servers or computers you want remote access to and then which users get which access. There is a web-based portal at rav3.lgfl.org.uk with various different options.

One of the technologies is called ‘any connect’, which basically opens up a secure VPN tunnel into the LGfL 2.0 network, using your USO to authenticate. For the Mac, it involves downloading a bit of software, but that means you can also go in direct from the app rather than using the web-based portal.

Once you’re in, you can then use Screen Sharing to view any servers using VNC (such as a Mac server in our case). At first I was at a bit of a loss to know how to do this, as obviously all the servers don’t appear in the network browser in the Mac. But then I discovered I just needed to use Finder’s ‘Connect to Server…’ and then type vnc:// followed by the IP address of the server. Amazing! Now I can check my server wherever I am…

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