What do you need from Chrome OS?Source: Android Central

We love just how flexible the Chrome browser and Chrome OS feature set is. From the myriad extensions to web apps, to how useful it makes devices like Android phones and Chromebooks, Chrome OS is feature-packed. One of the most valuable tools that Chrome has to offer is the Chrome Remote Desktop, which allows you to access your computer (Mac, PC, Linux) from anywhere in the world using your Android or iOS phone, or another computer or tablet running Chrome and the Remote Desktop app. We'll show you how to set this feature up so that you can access your own files from far away, provide remote tech support, or receive remote tech support.

How to set up Chrome Remote Desktop on a Mac, PC, or Linux computer

Chrome Remote Desktop Setup MacSource: Android Central

If you're planning to access another computer from your Chromebook, you'll need to set up Chrome Remote Desktop on that computer.

  1. Open the Chrome browser on the computer you wish to access remotely.
  2. Type in remotedesktop.google.com/access.
  3. From the Remote Desktop site, click on the tab that says Remote Access.
  4. Click on the blue arrow in the box that says Set up remote access to download the remote access package.

    Chrome Remote Desktop Mac SetupSource: Android Central

  5. When the install package downloads, be sure to also click on the blue Add to Chrome extension box for quick access.

    Chrome Remote Desktop App MacSource: Android Central

  6. Follow the instructions and grant the necessary permissions to set up and install Chrome Remote Desktop.

    Chrome Remote Access Mac PermissionsSource: Android Central

  7. Set up a PIN for this computer so that you can access it remotely from another device.

    Chrome Remote Desktop PinSource: Android Central

  8. When you're ready to share the screen with another computer, click on the Chrome Remote Desktop extension from your Chrome toolbar.

    Chrome Remote Desktop ExtensionSource: Android Central

Note that you may have to grant this app permission to operate on your computer, or to modify your computer's security permissions.

How to use Chrome Remote Desktop from a Chromebook

Chrome Remote Desktop MacSource: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central

  1. Open the Chrome browser on the computer you wish to access remotely.
  2. Type in remotedesktop.google.com/access.

    Chrome Remote Desktop Chromebook 1Source: Android Central

  3. Click Remote Access to select which computer you want to access.

    Chrome Remote Desktop Chromebook 2Source: Android Central

  4. Double-click on the computer you need to control.
  5. Enter the PIN you created when setting up Chrome Remote Desktop on your other computer.
  6. Click the arrow to connect.
  7. When you're ready to disconnect, click Stop Sharing.

    Chrome Remote Desktop Chromebook 3Source: Android Central

Not only is Chrome Remote Desktop a handy tool for you to be able to access your office computer or the big desktop back home, but it can be a great way for you to provide tech support for friends or family who may need a bit of help with a computer problem. When you share your computer with someone else, or someone shares theirs with you, a one-time access code is created, so the person being helped need not worry that their helper will continue to have access over their device. The person sharing will simply click Stop Sharing at any point, and the helper will no longer have access to their device.

Our top equipment picks

While you can use Chrome Remote Desktop from any device running the Chrome browser, we are partial to the many styles of affordable and flexible Chromebooks. Here's one of our favorites right now.

The sweet spot

Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5

Great performance for a great price

This new Chromebook from Lenovo has all the features you'd want from a more expensive device at a more palatable price point. Plus, it looks fantastic too!

Additional Equipment

While it's great to be able to access your computer from another Chrome browser, sometimes you may be more mobile. For those times, make sure you have the Chrome Remote Desktop app installed on your Android phone.

Chrome Remote Desktop App (Free at Google Play)

Securely access your Mac, PC, or Linux computer from anywhere via your Android phone. Just remember to set up Chrome Remote Desktop app on your computer first.

We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.