Here's a free way to access your desktop from a tablet

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Here's a free way to access your desktop from a tablet

Like Parallels Access, Citrix ShareConnect is another - and in some ways better - method for running desktop applications from your tablet.

If you find yourself using your tablet more and more, and wish there was a way to access your work files on it, there are various ways of doing this.
 
Various remote desktop applications have been around for some time, providing a way of remotely controlling a computer from a tablet or smartphone. But the experience hasn't been great, typically because of the relatively small screen size.
 
More recently, a new category has emerged to deliver individual applications rather than the entire desktop. Rather than having to mess with the Start menu or dig through windows to run applications, these services provide a broadly native view of the available programs and files.
 
They also map mobile-style interactions such as swipe and pinch to the desktop equivalents. In our experience, this makes them distinctly more convenient than traditional remote desktop products.
 
These products consist of three parts: a mobile app, a desktop application, and a service that allows the app to 'find' the desired host computer.
 
The latest entrant is Citrix ShareConnect
 
It appears to be very similar to the more established Parallels Access, but free of charge, at least initially. iOS and Android apps are available for both services, although where Parallels Access works on smartphones and tablets, ShareConnect is for tablets only.
 
A potentially very useful feature of ShareConnect is that it provides a way of viewing and editing Word, Excel and PowerPoint files even if the corresponding application is not installed on the host computer.
 
ShareConnect is integrated with the Citrix ShareFile file-sharing service, and signing up for ShareConnect gives you a 1GB ShareFile account. This is important because ShareConnect does not support the storage of files on mobile devices, so the only way to be sure you'll be able to access a particular file even if your desktop is switched off is to store it in ShareConnect.
 
ShareConnect requires a minimum of Windows 7, OS X 10.8, iOS 7.0, and Android 3.0.
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