I first started using TeamViewer version 12, last year and it has been a fantastic tool. I reviewed it very positively as it was a great tool for me to access my systems remotely. An often spoken criticism of TeamViewer was that it was a Wine application not a true native Linux application. Unless if you pointed it out or checked your system processes, you would really never know it. TeamViewer 12 was a fantastic application that ran extremely well on Linux.
What is TeamViewer?
TeamViewer allows you to remotely access and administer another machine and interact with it as almost as though you had physical access to it. This remote desktop application works very well even when the connection speed is poor. This is a commercial, closed-source application that runs on Windows, Mac, Linux, ChromeOS, Android and several others. It has a free for non-commercial version that I greatly encourage you to try out.
I started with getting the SUSE version from the TeamViewer downloads page. Since I most enjoy using the terminal to do the installation, I navigated to my Downloads folder and performed the install.
sudo zypper in ./teamviewer-suse_13.2.13582.x86_64.rpm
Your version number may vary.
A point of note, after the install, I recommend doing a repository refresh:
sudo zypper refresh
The installation of TeamViewer adds a repository and it will require you to either reject, trust temporarily, or trust always the GPG key for the repository. If you don’t do this the little update applet in the system tray will display annoying notifications periodically.
Changes Since Version 12
A much unwarranted criticism of TeamViewer 12 was the usage of a Wine wrapper for the Linux version. TeamViewer 12 worked smashingly well, incredibly stable and performed well.
With TeamViwer 13, gone is the Wine Wrapper (and hopefully the sneering) as it is now a native Qt application. It admittedly has a more crisp and smoother appearance to it as compared to the previous version. The User Interface truly has a new level of polish. With this change, no features have been lost. It’s all still there.
Some of the Features
The tools are broken down into four sections: Actions, View, Communicate and Files & Extras.
The Actions Menu has options, just as you would expect. Some options are grayed out, presumably that they are premium features, but there is an option under End Session that will End the session and lock. It is nice to see that the Lock function works as you would expect on KDE Plasma.
The View section has options that seem very self-explanatory. Something to take note is the option to force an Optimize speed or Optimize quality of the remote session. If you have multiple monitors on the remote machine, switching between the monitors is easy and intuitive.
Under the Communicate section, there is the ability to chat with the remote user. Should you be doing tech help for a friend or family member, this can be very handy. I haven’t had a need to Switch sides with partner before but I can see where that would come in handy.
Files & Extras has the option to do screen recording. A feature I can see very handy if you have to show someone how to do something and want them to have a record of it to refer back if needed. The Open file transfer tool is very valuable and super convenient when you have to send off a file as part of the tech help but I have used mostly to send a file to my home computer or the other way around when I am remote.
My use cases haven’t changed much in the last year, outside of I don’t use it very often with mobile devices. I have found other ways to directly communicate with them using KDE Connect. Where I do use it most is to remote into my home system when I am remote. This is handy when I am working on a project and didn’t want to shut it down and take it with me or to check on a process. It is great to have the flexibility to remote into my home machine finish a project or continue plugging away at something when there is a some white-space in my day. The benefits of remote access to help out friends and family that, on the occasion, have tech questions is a fantastic time saver.
What I Like
The menu items are the same but everything has a better look about it. The fonts and widgets are smoother and the Toolbar has a pleasant fade to translucent when the mouse moves away from the menu. TeamViewer continues to be very reliable and the same consistent performance. If I were to ever make a business in the Information Systems space, this as a fine solution to do remote desktop support. There are complaints about the expense of it but considering all the features, stability and general polish, the business case is there to use it. The $49 / month offering for a business that has regular need for it seems justifiable. I don’t have that much need for it and thankfully, you can use it for free for non-commercial use.
What I Like Less
The only one, small, regression I have noticed with version 13 is the process of adding new computers to my list. There wasn’t a right-click option to “add this computer” to my computer list. Adding a remote computer is easy enough doing it the manual way entering the ID and password of the machine. This is the only a minor annoyance I have noticed.
TeamViewer 13 has a whole new level of polish, has moved away from Wine and is a native Qt application. I am very impressed by the lack of regressions in making this rather significant transition. The application does feel a more responsive but that could just be me getting distracted by all the nice new polish. I didn’t perform any before and after benchmarks to verify.
I continue to be very thankful and grateful that this company builds a version compatible with openSUSE and would allow me to use TeamViewer for non-commercial purposes. I have become very accustomed to this tool and hope for many more years of usage out of it.
TeamViewer 12 on openSUSE Leap
3 thoughts on “TeamViewer 13 on openSUSE”
Thanks for another nice and helpful post. This is my 2nd time to comment on your blog and as before was happy when I saw cubiclenate.com pop up in my Google search.
This time I’m setting up a PC for an 80 year old Japanese man who’s had no experience with computers except what I’ve taught him (I live in Japan). He’s too confused about typing on the keyboard so hardly touches it, but is quite good at clicking on the microphone icon in Google Chrome to do voice searches so he can watch golfing videos on YouTube (the only thing he uses the computer for). At any rate, I decided to install openSUSE Leap this time on the PC I’m setting up for him (the previous one I gave him running Windows is dying) and have been perusing your blog recently since, thanks to you mostly, I’ve also started using openSUSE on one of my laptops. So I’ve chosen openSUSE for his new (but actually 8 years old bought used for 3,800 yen with i3-3220/4GB RAM) machine.
This time I’m going to use TeamViewer so despite the coronavirus pandemic I can remote into his computer and run system updates occasionally, or teach him something beyond Googling.
With CubbcleNate’s help (from this and other blog posts) a loudmouth Texan (that’s me) can help an elderly Japanese man have his first computer experiences and get online to watch golf. Sorry for my long blathering, but I wanted to say “howdy” and “thanks”.
I really enjoy the visual of a loudmouth Texan in Japan. I am sure there is a fantastic series of stories there! Also, thank you for the kind words. Feel free to hit me up if there is additional information I should provide to make your (and others) life a bit better using Linux and openSUSE.