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I've had a Mac for several decades now, and yet a customer - who has little idea about the Mac - was able to show me an extremely practical tip recently. It's about screen sharing for remote access over the Internet - without any TeamViewer or AnyDesk.
There is a small tool called "Screen Sharing" in a folder that is well hidden from the user. If you want to search for it, you can find it via this path:
Macintosh HD / System / Library / CoreServices / Applications / Screen Sharing.app
But it is much easier to call it up. The first way goes like this: You press the CMD + space bar to bring up Spotlight and then enter "Screen sharing" in the search field. A small text field now appears in which you can enter the Apple ID of the other user whose screen you want to see.
If the other user is not sure what the e-mail address of his Apple ID is, the best thing to do is to send him to “System Preferences” and there to the “Apple ID” area. At the top left there is the email address directly under his name.
The second way to start screen sharing is through the Messages app. If you have opened a chat with the other user there, click on the little info symbol in the top right corner (sometimes it says “Details”). Now a view appears with (usually five) blue circles and the option "Share". If you click on this, you can choose between the following options:
In the first case you give the other person access to your screen and in the second case you ask if you can see the other person's screen.
In any case, a window opens for the other person asking for the appropriate access rights. Once that's done, you can share your screen and help other Mac users or get help over the Internet.
As far as I could see, screen sharing only works between Macs and not between iPad or iPhone and Mac. That's a small caveat, but to be honest, I'm glad that I no longer have to resort to third-party software to access another Mac in an emergency.
If you are afraid that someone will secretly look over your shoulder when you are sitting at your Mac, you can relax. Apple has taken precautions here. As soon as someone wants to access their own Mac via screen sharing, you first have to agree in a window that this access is allowed.
When this has happened, you can tell from a pulsing icon in the menu bar (looks like the program icon from the screen sharing app) that a connection is open here. If this cannot be seen, there is no screen sharing.
You can also find the screen sharing via this icon by clicking on it and then choosing the option to stop sharing.
Did you already know this way of screen sharing between Macs? Or is he new to you too? I'm sure it has been around for a few macOS versions. It was new to me, but I will probably use it more often in the future.
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Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He appears as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with problems of a technical nature. In his free time he drives electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with his iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions for current bugs.