How to use Viewer Without Port Forward?! Repeater?!

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alissonsgarcia
Posts: 2
Joined: 2021-11-22 00:56

How to use Viewer Without Port Forward?! Repeater?!

Post by alissonsgarcia »

Hi.
I have always used ULTRAVNC by adding port forward information in the router, and that's why ULTRAVNC was never my favorite VNC software.
Today, after reading about the repeater in the site's documentation, it says repeater can be used to connect to a server without any need to configure the router with port forward.
I have been trying to do so for hours, but in my opinion the documentation is extremely bad.

Here are a few doubts I got stucked with:

1o) The documentation says to right click the repeater tray icon and choose SETTING in the pop-up menu. Well, herein my PC there is no SETTINGS in the pop-up menu, just ABOUT and EXIT!
In another page they say to use the browser: "http://localhost:80"
That worked for me and I was able to connect the repeater to the server with the option NEW CLIENT in the ULTRAVNC SERVER pop-up menu in the tray icon.

2o) The repeater documentation says to: "Go to C:\Program Files\uvnc bvba\UltraVNC and open up ultravnc.ini"
"Under the section [admin] add the following setting:
service_commandline = -autoreconnect ID:123456789 -connect repeater_ip_address:5500"

Where does the ID number comes from?! Is that what identifies the server destination?! I have added that line above exactly as posted, with ID 123456789

3o) When I go to the ULTRAVNC Viewer, choose REPEATER, type my ip address (internet ip, not the local netword ip), I am unable to connect, even with the repeater running in the server machine as service. Windows firewall is set to allow ultravnc connections, etc.
ULTRAVNC Viewer is set as a repeater with first line as:
"ID:123456789"
second line as:
"internet ip number:5901"


In resume, I followed as much information as I could find, but the information is too bad written and too hard to understand about something that was supposed to be simple!

How exactly does the repeater need to be configured in order to allow remote connections with port forward configuration in the router? Can anyone help? Thank you.
alissonsgarcia
Posts: 2
Joined: 2021-11-22 00:56

Re: How to use Viewer Without Port Forward?! Repeater?!

Post by alissonsgarcia »

Thank you for the reply.
The content of your link is exactly everything I posted in my first message. No news over there.
I have read everything again and I was able to make two corrections:

First Correction:
The documentation you linked does not mention the necessity of editing the file C:\Program Files\uvnc bvba\UltraVNC\ultravnc.ini
After reading everything again I noticed that the documentation that does mention the necessity of editing the ultravnc.ini file contains a mistake.
I just copied what I found there and it was:
service_commandline = -autoreconnect ID:123456789 -connect repeater_ip_address:5500
but, the correct line was suposed to be:
service_commandline = -autoreconnect ID:123456789 -connect localhost:5500
That's the first mistake I was able to identify and fix.

Second Correction:
Now, about how to use the ULTRAVNC Viewer, all darkness again. No clear orientation.
But I was able to figure it out by myself.
I kept the first line as: "ID:123456789"
The second line was the problem. First I tried ip_address:5900 and failed.
Then I imagined that maybe I was supposed to use the repeater's port, since it is the repeater the one responsible to link the two connections, so It was reasonable to test the port 5500, but it failed again.
Then, I tested port 5901 and it worked, finally, but partially! So much work!!! Not a novice job at all!!!! How many people can get this far?!

So, now I got a connection, but mouse and keyboard commands are not passing through! I can just watch the remove screen!
What is the problem now?!
EDITED:
It seems like I didn't actually connect to the repeater, but to the server directly, because I had configured the router to route ports 5900 to 5903 to the ip address 192.168.0.2. But, as soon as I removed that configuration from the router I was not able to connect to the ultravnc server anymore! So, the connection that was first established was fruit of my own work in the router (setting a port forward configuration) and not a work made by the repeater to allow the connection to pass through the router without the need of a port forward. So, the repeater is still not doing its job. I don't know what else to do here.


I'll add an extra doubt here that just occurred to me. How am I supposed to configure the second server? Should I just repeat everything in the next computer with a different ID number? Is that enough? Will the next server also work under port 5901? How can that be changed? Is it in the repeater settings or in the server's settings?

It's not mentioned in the documentation, but I noticed the REPEATER doesn't auto start with windows, so, as soon as the computer is rebooted, the remote computer will become unavailable! I'll need to manually add the repeater to the windows start-up setting, won't I?! I also noticed that even if I reboot and start the repeater manually, ultravnc server doesn't connect to the repeater. It has been necessary for me to start the ultravnc server application manually too in order to get server and repeater linked together! So much work for a Windows software! It just seems like a linux command line installation of some complicated software!

Thank you
Last edited by alissonsgarcia on 2021-11-23 06:14, edited 7 times in total.
Rudi De Vos
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Re: How to use Viewer Without Port Forward?! Repeater?!

Post by Rudi De Vos »

Both are correct, in the sample the server/repeater/viewer where started on the same pc.
If the repeater run on the localhost, you use localhost as ip for the repeater.
If he run on a.b.c.d you use a.b.c.d
service_commandline = -autoreconnect ID:123456789 -connect repeater_ip_address:5500
service_commandline = -autoreconnect ID:123456789 -connect localhost:5500

Viewer, repeater_ip is a placeholder for the the repeaters ip address.

The repeater settings indicate what you need to use as port.
Image
Viewer
ID:123456789
a.b.c.d:5874
server
-autoreconnect ID:123456789 -connect repeater_ip_address:5500

Unless you can run a repeater on some server with full internet access and a official ip adress you need to forwards the port.
server : a.b.c.d
repeater : a.c.d.e
viewer: d.h.g.f
The server and viewer connect to a.c.d.e
In this case no port forward is needed

If you want to use the repeater on an internal network then you also need to forward both ports (indicated in the repater settings)
In that case, server and viewer need to connect to the offical ip of the router
autoreconnect ID:123456789 -connect router_ip_address:5500
Viewer
ID:123456789
router_ip_address:5874
That's even complicater then just forwarding ports.
alissonsgarcia
Posts: 2
Joined: 2021-11-22 00:56

Re: How to use Viewer Without Port Forward?! Repeater?!

Post by alissonsgarcia »

@Rudi thank you for the reply. I think I understood most of what you explained, but your explanation brought many doubts about ultravnc itself to my mind.

From what you just explained here, the repeater needs to be installed on a computer with full internet access in order to allow remote server connections without port forward configurations in the router. If that's the case, what I understood about the reason of existence of the repeater is wrong. Based on what the documentations say about the repeater, the repeater's main objective is to allow remote connections without the need to configure port forward settings in the router, but the documentation never mentioned that the repeater would need to be installed on a computer with direct internet access and that all traffic between the LAN and the internet should be passing through that single computer with the repeater installed (because, in practice, that's what it means to have one computer in a LAN with direct Internet access).

In other words, for me, what you are saying, in practice, is that the repeater serves only to allow remote access to more than one vnc server using ID numbers instead of port numbers, but since it's much easier to just set one port number to each local computer than to go through all the trouble related to the use of the repeater, the practical use on the repeater is none! Then, the repeater is worthless.

Did I understand the situation correctly? If I did, I'll be forced to go back to the port forwarding configuration in the router if I wish to use ultravnc.

Thank you again.
Last edited by alissonsgarcia on 2021-11-25 01:47, edited 9 times in total.
Rudi De Vos
Admin & Developer
Admin & Developer
Posts: 6401
Joined: 2004-04-23 10:21
Contact:

Re: How to use Viewer Without Port Forward?! Repeater?!

Post by Rudi De Vos »

If you have 50 servers , located on multiple sites and you want to access them from all over world then the repeater is for you.
It's not made for a simple home user with minimal network knowledge, but for admin who need to access multiple servers.
You setup a repeater in the US and server connections between Londen and Brussels without the need to change a bit on the routers.
We host a windows version, there are also linux and buildin in a router software, but in all cases you need an extra server, usual some dedicated server hosted by a provider.
Image

But there is a mode I that works like this
Image

In this case
Viewer connect to
Host 10.10.10.12:5902
Proxy/repeater214.15.20.23:5901

Server is running on 10.10.10.12 port 5902 ( this can by any port)
NEVER RUN IT WITHOUT LIMITING ACCEES TO IP:PORT
This require to use mode I
Image
alissonsgarcia
Posts: 2
Joined: 2021-11-22 00:56

Re: How to use Viewer Without Port Forward?! Repeater?!

Post by alissonsgarcia »

Thank you. Pretty clear now that it was not designed to home or small office applications. The documentation lack a lot of relevant information. Just lost a few days trying to work with the repeater, led by the false information that it would allow remote connection without port forward. I'll keep using other solutions. Thank you for your patience.
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