Apple Remote Desktop Reviews

81 Ratings
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Score 7.5 out of 100

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Reviews (1-18 of 18)

Isidoro &quot;Roy&quot; Jovero | TrustRadius Reviewer
March 12, 2020

It's free, it's Apple-native, and it just works

Score 7 out of 10
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We used to use ARD when we had Mac-based Zoom Room setups, but after changing our ZR environment, we only use ARD on a couple of dashboard setups in the org. It proved to be very helpful when it came to working on machines that don't have regular human interaction (we would use Zoom to do remote support when a human was on the other end).
  • Remote support of headless systems.
  • IP addresses are easily seen.
  • Latency never seemed to be an issue.
  • UI seems dated.
  • Specific configurations are needed on endpoints.
  • It would be nice to get a notification when an endpoint comes back online after rebooting.
ARD is great when you're working with headless servers and machines that don't have an active user attached. Although there is a little bit of configuration needed on the endpoint side, when set up properly, things are seamless. When in the office and the end user can't come to the IT area, I always check if I can use ARD instead of Zoom for remote assistance
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Brian Sossamon | TrustRadius Reviewer
April 10, 2019

Apple Remote Desktop (ARD)

Score 10 out of 10
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We use ARD for remote desktop for our Macbooks/iMac computers. We also use it for managing profiles and sending files between machines.
  • Remote searching on devices
  • Screen capture/sharing
  • File copy/transfer
  • Application installation
  • I just use what ARD offers and it works fine for my organization.
I use the capabilities as they are built into the software and I have no need for any other functions.
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Ravinder Gupta | TrustRadius Reviewer
February 04, 2019

Powerful and Sophisticated Remote Administration for Mac Computers

Score 9 out of 10
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We are using Apple Remote Desktop for managing Mac computers on our network. The product is being used to perform administrative tasks such as on-demand remote assistance, remote software installations and perform AutoInstall using Task Server to minimize human intervention on scheduled tasks.

Automator Actions is another cool feature we use often. You can create a workflow of tasks you want to perform and then schedule them to execute automatically on client machines.

One of the coolest features which I haven't used elsewhere is "Curtain Mode" while performing an administrative task on a client machine. You can block the local user's view of his own screen while performing administrative tasks.
  • Automator Actions: This is a very cool feature and cost saving as it reduces human effort by automating the workflow of tasks.
  • Curtain Mode: This lets you block your local user's view of the desktop while performing administrative tasks.
  • Spotlight Search: It can perform lightning fast searches on machines using the spotlight search feature of OS X and thus saves a lot of time.
  • As apple usually does, this is only for Mac computers. This is not a cross-platform utility.
  • There is no mobile device interface to this software, it is only available on Mac App Store.
This product is great for performing administrative tasks on Mac computers on the network remotely. This is a great automation tool for software installs and upgrades on multiple computers over the network.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
November 09, 2018

OK for small players, but don't even think about it if you're not.

Score 7 out of 10
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We use it across the organization for various maintenance tasks. Whether it is accessing servers, installing packages, or simply assisting staff with technical problems, we have done it all it with ARD at some point.

Some users are more advanced than others and have even used it as a reporting tool. With the advent of Jamf in our organization though, I imagine ARD's days are numbered. Especially considering the security risks that are all but necessary in our implementation.
  • Providing a one-stop shop for doing a variety of troubleshooting tasks
  • Presenting its functions and tools in a clear and useful manner
  • Offering reporting capabilities
  • Supporting macOS in small deployments
  • Randomization of local administrator passwords
  • Lack of auditing capability
  • Lack of abilities to manage access to computers
  • Cannot install DMGs
For a small deployment of macOS, I can see where Apple Remote Desktop could suffice. I can see where a company that is strapped for cash could benefit from a knowledgeable employee using it to automate some tasks. I am not comfortable giving an estimate number-wise.

For a large deployment of macOS or iOS, this would be a very inappropriate tool. There are far too many obstacles for an app like Apple Remote Desktop to successfully manage a large fleet of macOS computers or really any number of iOS devices. You simply need an MDM solution in this day and age. This will become increasingly necessary, even in small numbers, but MDM providers have started to provide solutions for customers in these situations.
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John Readwin | TrustRadius Reviewer
January 19, 2018

Apple Remote Desktop, a must have for your Mac Network toolbox.

Score 9 out of 10
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I currently use Apple Remote Desktop to access clients' networks to provide support and run reports on devices within the network, I also use it to access my work network from remote places.
  • Very easy to use, and robust. Apple Remote Desktop provides a wide range of functionality at very low cost
  • It does network to network very well ( once setup)
  • Working on your LAN (Local area network) ARD is probably the best tool out there for managing Mac networks, with a full array of features, screen sharing, and reporting
  • The biggest flaw with ARD is its inability to map to multiple machines behind a router. Without the proper VPN router setup, you can only specify one machine on the other side of a router ( again without VPN'ing into the whole network)
It works easily to access a single computer on your work network from home and also provides an easy interface to access machines on your LAN.
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Aleese Gulick | TrustRadius Reviewer
November 21, 2017

Take a bite out of this Apple Remote Desktop

Score 6 out of 10
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I use Apple Remote Desktop to login into my work computer remotely. It is two different interfaces that I am dealing with and I have yet to have any issues, if anything it is very fast and easy to use. My whole department uses it if they have a need for it, and it is made available to the whole campus. It addresses the issue of having to conform to using one thing to access your work, makes it easier to get things done.
  • Fast, this is great because usually remote desktops are rather slow.
  • Group demos, helps me when I am needing to show multiple people things.
  • Ease of use, freedom. Since it is so easy to use it makes it easier to not have to be stuck in front of your office computer.
  • Initial login, I had to look up how to do it.
  • Since everything is driven with mouse/touchpad. I have lost the remote desktop before and this has caused it to log out.
  • More shortcuts.
It works great on business trips and when you have to unexpectedly be off from work. I have also used it when I have to present in meetings across campus. Not ideal if internet connection is poor or you flip between your personal computer and the remote screen a lot, this will cause a time out.
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Christopher Power | TrustRadius Reviewer
November 14, 2017


Score 10 out of 10
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Apple Remote Desktop is being used specifically for content and use management, at the school level, for managing students. The most used tools are computer screen sharing, file drops and locking labs of computers down during lesson plans. The entire organization of our school utilizes Apple Remote Desktop, as the entire school has MAC labs and MAC computers. All departments and educators have access to ARD in the entire building.

The problem that ARD addresses is the need to have a tool available for educators to improve the quality and control of the educational experience. Students often need files sent to them for lessons or project based learning. During other times teachers will need to use ARD in order to address the issue of student engagement and use Apple Remote Desktop to improve engagement by either screen sharing or sharing a student's screen to the rest of the class of students.
  • Apple Remote Desktop has a very simple and easy to navigate user interface. The top navigation bar allows for easy and quick access to all necessary tools and elements in ARD.
  • Apple Remote Desktop connects to all the computers on the network allowing for ease of use. This is a strength because it always works on the first attempt.
  • Apple Remote Desktop drops files directly onto the desktop for all students without needing to use google drive.
  • Apple Remote Desktop allows for sharing one screen to the rest of the class to allow to show student work to all students at once.
  • Apple Remote Desktop could improve by allowing you to drop files into specific folders rather than on to a messy desktop where some files may get lost or not seen quickly.
  • Apple Remote Desktop sometimes has a small lag. When I click my mouse I often need to wait another second or check the student machines to make sure that what they are seeing is what I am doing. It seems as if it does not live stream perfectly.
  • Apple Remote Desktop pictures do not show up as clean and clear as they do on the screen I am sharing with. My teacher iMac shows quality images, however, when screen shared the ARD screen share shows a lower quality imagine with less colors shown.
Apple Remote Desktop is perfectly suited for education. In education you need access to to all students at all times to be able to assess student learning and student performance. Students often are busy on their screens in large computer labs doing work that is not always relevant to the classroom. In this scenario it comes in handy as a teacher tool to improve the entire education process and get the focus of teaching back on students. It would be less appropriate working with students one on one.
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Eric Kelley | TrustRadius Reviewer
April 04, 2017

ARD in a constantly growing multiple location environment

Score 10 out of 10
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With a company of over 800 employees and growing everyday, our IT department needs a remote support solution. We have users all over the country, and with Apple Remote Desktop we are able to quickly and efficiently support those users. We use ARD daily for general maintenance and fixes for our users, we push out updates and new software as well. I'd say the most critical use for ARD for myself is being able to VPN into my network and maintain the servers when I am offsite.
  • Pushing software.
  • Easily restart or shutdown of systems.
  • Being able to work on a user's computer with the curtains closed for uninterrupted maintenance.
  • Unable to remote into Windows Machines.
  • Need to connect to VPN to support users out of the local network.
ARD is well suited in any work environment that has multiple offices or where users work from home.
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Angel Swalve | TrustRadius Reviewer
April 05, 2017

Got stress?? Apple Remote Desktop does the Tech good...

Score 9 out of 10
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Apple Remote Desktop is being used in our school district on each campus. I currently use Apple Remote Desktop to troubleshoot classroom and lab computers as needed. I also use Apple Remote Desktop to update computer software as new updates are released. I also use Apple Remote Desktop to make it easier for teachers, who bring in 20-25 Pre-Kindergarten students, by logging the lab computers in through Apple Remote Desktop. This creates less stress for the teachers and allows the students more time to work on their programs instead of sitting waiting for the teacher to log them in one by one. I also use Apple Remote Desktop to push log in information for different software programs. Apple Remote Desktop allows me to work on numerous computers quickly and more efficiently. I currently have over 250 computers that I manage on a daily basis and without Apple Remote Desktop it would be impossible to touch each and every computer.
  • Provides a way to log the lab and classroom computers on to allow teachers to teach instead of one by one logging on the younger students.
  • Provides a way to update the computers all at once, which is particularly handy for the numerous Adobe Flash updates that come out regularly.
  • Provides a way to push scripts to maintain the computers and set power settings.
  • Allows me to remote into a trouble computer across the building to help when a problem arises.
  • Sometimes Apple Remote Desktop is finicky when it comes to wireless connection. If a lab computer drops the ethernet, Apple Remote Desktop can't always find the computer.
  • Setting of power settings can be messed up when certain scripts are ran and I haven't found a way to "reset" back to default. It has that option but it does not work to reset to default. I have 25 computers that no longer turn them selves on in the morning, even though the setting in the power settings has it scheduled to do so.
  • Depending on the day, Apple Remote Desktop does not search or scan as well as other days.
Apple Remote Desktop is well suited for logging in Pre-Kindergarten students all at the same time to allow the students more time on the computer versus waiting for the teacher to log them in one by one. Apple Remote Desktop is not well suited for use on wireless consistently.
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Gabriel Duff | TrustRadius Reviewer
May 06, 2016

Apple Remote Desktop will save you time & money

Score 10 out of 10
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Apple remote desktop (ARD) is a key tool in any Macintosh system administrators tool box. Made by Apple itself and currently supporting remote connectivity to any of its operating systems, it's the tool you need. The ability to secure and collect any amount of systems across an organization for remote access or remote installs and commands makes my job easier every day. The price for ARD is also under $100 from Apple's app store, this makes it very easy to recommend for support and keeps you in budget with your company. Being able to use a remote task server also allows ARD to be able to do tasks for you when you aren't around, further lightening your work load. IT also offers encrypted connections to users systems and compressed data traffic.
  • Software deployments via PKG file installs remotely.
  • Multiple observation of more then one computer at a time on screen.
  • Remote terminal command line interface.
  • It is resource intensive, sometimes it becomes locked up or unstable.
  • The UI is dated and could be improved on.
  • Would be nice if it offered abilities to clone or remotely install OS X upgrades.
General day to day use for managing multiple clients in an organization is its strong point.
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Tim Twiss | TrustRadius Reviewer
May 04, 2016

Apple Remote Desktop will help you take control of your Mac users.

Score 10 out of 10
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Apple Remote Desktop (ARD) is utilized by members of the information technology department to provide support for the Mac OS computers in our network environment. It is utilized primarily to provide instant remote support for end users whether they were in the same office or located in another city. We also rely heavily on ARD to provide detailed software and hardware reports on the clients running the software. It also works well to centrally manage the distribution of new software. Essentially, it allows the IT department to provide a much higher level of support while increasing efficiency and productivity.
  • Remote System Control. Quickly resolve a problem while continuing to work on multiple tasks from your own PC. This allows for less downtime/frustration on the end user and more efficient productivity from the technician.
  • Hardware and Software Reports. This allows the technician to quickly spot a hardware deficiency (perhaps not enough RAM) or software incompatibility (not running the latest version) without having to bother the end user for this diagnostic information.
  • Software Distribution. Used in tandem with the Software Reports, if an issue is found in a report, the Software Distribution will allow the technician to push the necessary software to the users PC.
  • Speed. Apple Remote Desktop still appears to be slower when compared to Windows Remote Desktop
  • Cost. The $79.99 price tag seems rather high. Windows Remote Desktop, although not as feature rich, is included with the operating system.
  • Drag and Drop. While functioning, it can be clunky and difficult to use.
This is mainly a professional tool, I don't see a need for it in a household environment. I would highly recommend it for any information technology professionals that support any Apple OS devices. Although I feel the $79.99 price tag is a bit high for the software, when used heavily, it is definitely worth the investment.
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Kim Bathker | TrustRadius Reviewer
May 03, 2016

ARD reviewed by a teacher

Score 9 out of 10
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We are an educational organization and use Apple Remote Desktop to monitor students and provide tech support.
  • Great for monitoring users on your network.
  • Easy tech support.
  • Good for sharing screens to a projector.
  • Screen refresh rate can be a bit slow, but this depends largely on your network
Apple Remote Desktop is terrific for education.
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Kevin B. Richardson II | TrustRadius Reviewer
October 30, 2015

Apple Remote Desktop Used In K-12 World

Score 10 out of 10
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We use Apple Remote Desktop across the board in IT to manage, update and provide remote support for our end users on the Mac platform.
  • Push and manage updates.
  • Provide remote management and support.
  • One easy tool to gather information regarding machines in the field.
  • User friendly.
  • More support for iOS and mobile devices.
  • More support with pushing updates to mobile devices
  • Remote lock a device or wipe a device that has been stolen.
Many people ask why we don't use a all in one program to mange Macs and PCs in one place. I explain Apple Remote Desktop is one of a kind software.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
June 05, 2018

Apple Remote Desktop - The Time Saver

Score 10 out of 10
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We use Apple Remote Desktop (ARD) to remotely repair computers, push out updates, and troubleshoot issues for our IT department. It allows us to remotely view and command several machines at once saving us time.
  • Remote commands for doing things to a large number of devices
  • Allows us to see what the user is seeing
  • Allows us to repair things without leaving the office.
  • Can be slow at times
  • Network scanners don't always pull up all devices
  • Agent running on client machines has to be restarted occasionally
[It's well suited] When you need the ability to see what your end user sees, or you need to send commands to large groups of computers.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
April 02, 2018

ARD, Essential for Apple Environments

Score 9 out of 10
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ARD is being used by technology support staff in our organization to manage Apple desktops and laptops in our organization. It can collect stats from our endpoints and can run UNIX scripts in the background, this is especially helpful if we need to silently push an update or get information about the usage of a computer behind the scenes so to speak. We use this throughout our organization and not a day goes by when I do not use it.
  • Allows us to execute UNIX scripts without alerting a user or interrupting their workflow.
  • Allows us to observe, control, and share control of a user's machine flawlessly.
  • Enables us to collect usage statistics from endpoints to determine machine usage and this, in turn, helps drive business decisions.
  • The software has some bugs. When I have tried to create detailed lists and scanners I have had the program crash entirely, this is extremely frustrating.
  • Software does not scan as fast as I would like, though it does scan rather fast I wish it could scan faster.
If you are in an environment where you are supporting 10+ macOS desktops/laptops you need this product. It is great for Education and Education Management.

If you are not a technical support person, this software is not for you, if you don't do IT work in your org, this is not for you. In my opinion, any org that has less than 10 macOS machines does not need this product.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
April 17, 2017

ARD: Apple on steroids

Score 8 out of 10
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Apple Remote Desktop (ARD) is our primary remote desktop sharing tool on our HQ LAN, which consists of mostly Macs. Secondarily, we use it to deploy software packages to our local Mac users.
  • Screen sharing with Macs
  • Remote Control of Macs
  • I would like to see more included Unix scrips that can be pushed to clients.
  • Inclusion of a way to remote control or screen share with Windows machines would be useful, as I manage a handful of Windows machines. While this would be possible using VNC on the Windows machines, including the ability to connect using Windows terminal connections would be awesome, for me.
ARD for me is based on a LAN, but can be used over WAN via VPN, but the latency makes ARD a less ideal tool. There are other cross platform tools that can do what ARD does which to me add value when managing a mixed environment.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
December 15, 2016

Great tool!

Score 8 out of 10
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It is used to monitor students when they work on MacBooks. I use it to maintain, update, install and distribute certain applications remotely. It's good enough to take a peek at a number of devices at the same time. I can control how I want to have a look at the devices by just "observing" (without knowledge of the client) or having a total control on the device. It also helps in organizing the devices according to their grade levels. At certain times UNIX commands can be used to control the macs. There are many many more features of Apple remote desktop, and it all depends on the users how to make use of all of its features.
  • District softwares remotely/silently.
  • Can be used to observe (specifically for the students).
  • Used to organize (name and tag) devices in the organization.
  • To set up some of the control features on the macs, like the system preferences settings, which can allow me to give controlled access to my students.
It's very well suited for any industry where one has to update and maintain the devices. Especially in education field [it is well suited] to observe the students in the class when they're using the MacBooks to make sure they're working on the stuff that have been asked to.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
October 27, 2015

ARD is a solid application.

Score 8 out of 10
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We use Apple Remote Desktop in the IT department to monitor and update our 150+ computers in our agency. ARD allows us to help employees with small tasks like updating software (Microsoft Ofiice, Flash ect.) to bigger task like troubleshooting issues over the phone. Overall ARD gets a lot of use from our 3 IT guys
  • Apple has done a really good job at limiting the resources ARD uses in recent updates.
  • Unix commands are a very easy to use and very efficient when trying to run group updates.
  • The reports is a great option that makes quick work if you need to get serial numbers or computer specs on 1 or 100 computers
  • When using the control feature. the screen will become black and you will have to move the mouse around to erase the black screen away or disconnect and reconnect to the end user device.
  • When searching for specific IP address more times then not it wont find it.
  • Copy/Paste does not work too well when going back and forth between your local machine and remote user
  • Cant install printers.
When you are running a mostly mac environment (as we are) its perfect. Since it is an apple product it works very well and doesn't use many resources.
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Feature Scorecard Summary

Screen sharing (18)
File transfer (18)
Instant message (16)
Secure remote access with Smart Card authentication (1)
Access to sleeping/powered-off computers (13)
Over-the-Internet remote session (14)
Initiate remote control from mobile (4)
Remote management of servers & workstations (16)
Remote Active Directory® management (5)
Centralized management dashboard (10)
Session record (6)
Annotations (3)
Monitoring and Alerts (8)
Multi-platform remote control (4)

About Apple Remote Desktop

Apple Remote Desktop (ARD), from Apple, is a remote administration tool for managing Apple computers running OS X across a network.
Categories:  Remote Desktop

Apple Remote Desktop Technical Details

Operating Systems: Unspecified
Mobile Application:No