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Symantec pcAnywhere 12.0 PC Review - -

Installation 8.7
Ease of use 8.5
Usefulness 8.8
Value 8.8
Distributor: Symantec
Review Date:
July 2007
Edwin Milheim


Symantec pcAnywhere 12.0

With the advent of the internet, IT support has become centralised and what better way to solve computer issues than by using remote access and Symantec's pcAnywhere 12.0 is just one of the programs available which basically does that, accessing other computers remotely.

Although certain versions of the Windows operating system offers innate remote access, pcAnywhere 12.0 is aimed at the business market which allows the user to access multiple computers through just one easy to use program.

The most noticeable differences with this current incarnation of this software package is the inclusion of support for Mac OS X and new connection wizards which now makes it easy to configure access to your network. Linux users will also be pleased to know that this current version of pcAnywhere also supports this popular "free-ware" platform.

New Features

  • Host Invitation feature allows end users to establish a reverse (outbound) connection to the helpdesk without knowing IP addresses.
  • Mac OS X host support enables management of Mac OS X computers from any pcAnywhere remote system.
  • Gateway functionality makes it easier for remote users to access the pcAnywhere hosts they need.
  • Single Session Manager combines pcAnywhere Manager and all active sessions into one tabbed window view.

The installation of pcAnywhere 12.0 was a breeze and it simple auto-installed once the software was detected and after the installation, we were ready to test this powerful remote access application. However with that said, a small program must also be installed on the remote computer which was just as easy as the main installation.

Version 12.0 also supports a new updated interface that allows users of a variety of IT experience to easily access the functionality of pcAnywhere 12.0. Whether it's the basic view of the in-depth management view, the program does not settle for second best and ensures basic to in-depth remote access.

Configuring the program has never been easy, especially with the inclusion of new and improved wizards that can easily find the hosts on your network with almost just with a few clicks. Accessing another computer remotely is done by clicking on the "Remote Control" which prompts the user to enter the IP address or even the dynamic address of the remote computer and you are automatically connected. The program also offers you access a variety of remote computers in the one program package which is great for large networks.

Key Features

  • Allows Microsoft® Windows, Linux®, Mac® OS X, and Microsoft Pocket PC remote systems to connect to Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X hosts.
  • Connection wizard guides new users through their initial client-host connection.
  • Powerful file-transfer capabilities allow users to upload and download files across different platforms.
  • Mandatory password protection and login encryption help ensure that only authorized users can access a pcAnywhere host.
  • Uses FIPS 140-2–validated encryption up to AES 256-bit.
  • Bandwidth Auto-Detect automatically maximizes pcAnywhere performance for each type of connection.
  • Remote Management tools provide direct access to vital operating system utilities (such as Command Prompt, Task Manager, and Services) on the host system.

Whether your connected via a network connection (extremely fast), broad connection (equally as fast), transferring files or accessing the remote computer was almost spontaneous and to make things even more accessible to the IT user, the software also allows you to connect via traditional modems, serial cables and even the antiquated parallel cable.

The software also supports a modified version of pcAnywhere where the user can connect to remote computers with limited throughput, allowing you to access the basics such as MS-DOS etc. Symantec have also added the ability to run this program on a variety of operating systems that include Microsoft Windows 98, 2000, XP, Vista and even less common platforms such as Linux and Mac OS X. We tested the connection on our Mac PowerBook which we could flawlessly connect from our PC server.

In conclusion, Symantec pcAnywhere 12.0 is a definitely a powerful software application that we could happily recommend to any business or users who wish to either centralize their IT support or need to access remote computers without a myriad of software packages. Hassle free remote access done right!

Minimum System Requirements:

Windows XP Home/XP Pro/2000 Pro/2000 Server (Host, Remote & Gateway); Windows NT 4/Me/98 (Host & Remote only); Windows XP Pro x64 or EM64T (Host & Gateway only)

  • 233MHz or higher processor

  • 64 MB of RAM (128 MB recommended)

Windows Server 2003 (Host, Remote, & Gateway); Windows Server 2003 x64 AMD64 or EM64T (Host & Gateway only)

  • 233MHz or faster processor

  • 128 MB of RAM (512 MB recommended)

pcAnywhere CrossPlatform Remote

  • Java Runtime Environment 1.4.2 or later

  • Red Hat 9, Red Hat Enterprise Linux ES or WS 3.0/4.0, Novell Linux Desktop 9, SuSE Linux 9.3/10.0, or SuSE Enterprise Server 8/9

  • Mac OS X 10.3 or later

  • Windows 98 or later

pcAnywhere Linux Host

  • Red Hat 9, Red Hat Enterprise Linux ES or WS 3.0/4.0, Novell Linux Desktop 9, SuSE Linux 9.3/10.0, or SuSE Enterprise Server 8/9

  • KDE or GNOME

pcAnywhere Mac OS X Host

  • Macintosh PowerPC G4/G5 processor only

  • Mac OS X 10.3 or later

pcAnywhere Web Remote

  • Java Runtime Environment 1.4.2 or later

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, or Safari

pcAnywhere Mobile

  • Windows Mobile 2003 for Pocket PC/Pocket PC Phone Edition or later

  • 1 MB of available RAM for installation


  • 35 MB of available hard disk space

  • CD or DVD drive

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 SP1 or later


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