ThinLinc Web Access - HTML5 Client
When a native client cannot be used, a browser based client can be used instead. This allows you to connect to a ThinLinc system from computers where you are not allowed to install any software, as well as mobile devices. In the past, we have provided a Java Applet for this purpose, but that technology is fading away. Few mobile devices supports Applets nowadays. Some other vendors are instead using special binary browser plugins, often limited to certain combinations of hardware, operating systems and web browsers.
Fortunately, the development of the Web has reached a point where you no longer need to extend the browser in order to use it as a Remote Desktop client. Most modern web browsers supports the fifth revision of the HTML standard, which is very well suited for this task. This new version, dubbed HTML5, contains exciting new features for speed, security and reliability.
A HTML5 Client is ideal for todays environment where a large number of different devices needs to be supported. It supports Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies. Touch screen tablets can be used. This includes the Apple iPad.
ThinLinc Web Access is based on the Open Source project noVNC. It uses HTML5 features such as WebSockets and Canvas. Since this technology is new, only a limited set of browsers are expected to work. We have tested the latest versions of following browsers:
- Internet Explorer
- Google Chrome
Note: At the time of writing, the "Android Browser" does not work since it does not support WebSockets. For more information, see http://code.google.com/p/android/issues/detail?id=25221. Note that other browsers such as Google Chrome and Firefox works well on Android.
You can test drive ThinLinc Web Access on our demo systems. First, register for an account. Then, connect to the US or EU demo server:
On touch devices, you will have a couple of extra icons in the top left corner:
- The "mouse" icon will allow you to toggle between which of the three mouse buttons you want to simulate when tapping the touch screen.
- The "keyboard" icon will bring up the on screen keyboard.
- The "Ctrl", "Alt", "Tab", "Esc" and "Ctrl-Alt-Del" icons represent those keys on a physical keyboard since they are missing from most on-screen keyboards.
Also note that on iOS and Android devices, you can add an icon to the home screen. For iOS, this is described at http://www.apple.com/ios/add-to-home-screen/. When ThinLinc Web Access is launched from the home screen, it will run in full screen mode.
All previous ThinLinc Clients have relied on the Secure Shell (SSH) protocol for encryption. ThinLinc Web Access is the first client which does not - it uses the Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol instead. Both solutions allows strong encryption algorithms such as AES-256. However, the TLS protocol relies on PKI certificates to validate server identity.
Found a bug? Want to suggest a feature? Check out the "Web Access" component of our Bugzilla database, which handles all feature requests and bug reports.