RStudio Server part 2: pros of using RStudio server for a remote connection

After playing around with R studio server for a while, I decided to write a followup to my previous blog post. I want to go over a few of the strong points of using RStudio server to access a remote machine using R.

Advantages of RStudio server
Before discovering RStudio Server, I would use either plain ssh with X enabled, or NoMachine NX to access a remote machine. In contrast to plain ssh, RStudio server ahs the advantage that it does not require a running X server at the host. This is mainly a problem under Windows, where you need to install Cygwin to get the X server running (assuming using putty for the ssh connection). Although it works, I don’t really like installing a lot of additional software just to get a remote connection with graphic support. Under Mac things work a little bit more out-of-the-box, but natively Mac OS X does not run X, and it fires up a seperate program where all X stuff happens. This also does not feel ideal, although it is much better than using windows. RStudio server does not require an X session, just a good web browser. Plots and pdfs can also be shown inside the browser.

Using a tool like NoMachine only requires a small client application, in addition to a server-side installation of NoMachine. This works quit well, although performance across firewalls can become slow. Although I have not used RStudio server across heavy firewalls, I suspect it performs a little better.

When being trapped behind a corporate firewall, the only traffic allowed to leave the firewall is over a proxy that only allows traffic over port 80. NoMachine and ssh can be used through tunnels, but RStudio Server is purely based on web traffic, and I think this might work well.

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3 Comments » for RStudio Server part 2: pros of using RStudio server for a remote connection
  1. StatET, the Eclipse plug-ins for R development,
    come with out of the box functionality to work on remote systems since many years and you can just stay within your familiar Eclipse desktop application to do so.

  2. Giorgos says:

    enable tomere desktop for this computer . That’s it. If they are on the same network than you can go to run and type in mstsc hit enter and a tomere connection window will pop up. Here you can type in the host name or IP and credentials and your in.

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